After a watery week at Trump National Doral, the PGA tour continues on its Florida swing at the Valspar Championship in Palm Harbor, Florida. With Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club playing historically as one of the PGA Tour’s toughest courses, choosing the best players for your lineups will be critical. Below is a list of golfers I love, like, and hate this week to help you in your lineup building process.
Golfers I Love
Henrik Stenson ($11,500) – There is one player in the field this week who has made every single one of his cuts for an entire year’s span, and that golfer is Henrik Stenson. If that’s not enough for you to put him in your lineup, he finished 4th last year and averaged 7.2 putts made per event over 10 feet in all of 2015, which should translate to a high ceiling in fantasy scoring.
Harris English ($9,600) – Harris English is one of my favorite golfers this week having finished in the top 10 twice in his last 3 showings at this event. English also happens to be near the top of the list in Par 3 birdie or better percentage, which will be critical on a course with 5 par 3’s. Harris will most likely be a popular play this week, but I will still have plenty of him in my lineups.
More PGA Content for the Valspar Championship
|PGA Cheat Sheet||Expert Rankings|
|PGA Love/Hate||PGA Targets|
Danny Lee ($8,000) – Danny Lee projects really well on this course in my model, and he finished 7th place last year after missing the cut in his first showing. On a course as difficult as this, I’m not going to be holding that first missed cut against him. Lee has remained consistent this year having made 6 out of his last 7 cuts and should provide good value as a golfer with one of the lowest par 3 scoring averages in the field.
Charley Hoffman ($7,600) – Hoffman is a quite volatile golfer and definitely won’t make it into my cash game lineup this week, but at $7,600 he should remain fairly low owned and is quietly on an upward trend in his recent events. He’s coming off of a T17 at the WGC-Cadillac Championship last week, so I’m looking for him to build off of that recent form.
Shawn Stefani ($6,500) – Shawn Stefani is nothing to write home about based on his recent form having missed four straight cuts, but this should keep him extremely low owned, and the courses over the past month or so have not suited his game well. Stefani is easily the highest projected golfer I have in the $6k range, and in two starts in this event has not finished outside of the top 20. While I won’t be going crazy with Stefani, this is a great opportunity to capture a golfer at a low ownership and a high projection.
Golfers I Like
Jordan Spieth ($12,800) – Spieth has not necessarily lived up to many people’s expectations recently as the top ranked golfer in the world, and he is the highest priced player this week. My hope is that his ownership is deflated as a result because Spieth is quietly one of the best par 3 players on tour and, as such, is ranked fourth in my model this week.
Matt Kuchar ($9,800) – Similar to Stenson, Kuchar has made over 95% of cuts in the last twelve months on tour, and, as such, he should be a great option in cash games this week. This, coupled with the fact that Kuchar has made 6 of 7 cuts dating back to 2004, will make him a prevalent part of my roster construction. I’d be weary of using him in GPPs, though, as I suspect Kuchar will be a very popular option this week.
Charles Howell III ($7,900) – CH3 is coming off a missed cut, which is not something that can be said about Howell often. Unfortunately, due to his solid course history, his ownership probably won’t be as low as I’d like it to be. At any rate, he should make a really good play at Valspar this week, having played the event 10 times since 2004 with 3 top 10s in that stretch.
Jason Kokrak ($7,800) – Jason Kokrak leaves me a bit concerned despite his high projection in my model because of having only made 2 cuts in his 5 appearances here. That being said, he has made 2 cuts in a row and has 7th and 14th place finishes in the cuts he has made, so it seems he may have figured out this difficult course.
Francesco Molinari ($6,900) – Molinari is another player I like for cash this week, having made over 90% of cuts in the past 12 months. He comes highly projected in my model, based on his ability to navigate a course that will require some accuracy and finesse. My only fear is that he doesn’t have significant history at this event and golfers without history tend to have trouble with very difficult courses.
Golfers I Hate
Charl Schwartzel ($10,200) – While Charl Schwartzel does have some upside, he is one of the worst par 3 players on tour. He also has difficulty avoiding bogeys and making putts consistently from over 10 feet, all of which should give him trouble on this course.
“While he does have some upside, he is one of the worst par 3 players on tour…”
Bill Haas ($8,500) – Bill Haas has the lowest projection in my model for the $8k range despite his up and down performance so far in 2016. I will definitely have some exposure to Haas moving forward this season given his upside, but this week is not the week for me on a difficult course that doesn’t suit his strengths.
Ryan Palmer ($8,600) – Ryan Palmer is on a solid streak over the course of his last 6 events having made every single cut, but I think this is the week he ends his made cuts streak. He is average (at best) in par 3 scoring, which plays a part in him coming in lower in my projections this week.
John Senden ($7,200) – Those who don’t read my article will see that Senden has a win at this event in 2014 and a 10th place finish last week. However, his win in 2014 was sandwiched by two missed cuts, and prior to his 10th place finish last week, Senden missed back-to-back cut lines. So, at this price and inflated ownership I will be fading Senden this week, predicting another missed cut.
Padraig Harrington ($6,700) – Harrington is a golfer that I am going to continue to fade until something changes in his game. He has shown some ability to win a golf tournament, but missed 12 cuts in his 21 events in 2015. Despite his popularity and name recognition, he feels like a golfer who is on the downswing of his career and doesn’t have the upside we are looking for, pending some major changes in his game.
Do you have questions about golfers who didn’t make my list? Get your questions answered by reaching out to me on twitter @BradMessersmith