WATCH: COURSE PREVIEW – GREENBRIER CLASSIC
The Greenbrier Classic is making its return to the PGA Tour schedule after a year off due to devastating floods in West Virginia. It’s played at The Old White TPC which is a par 70 course that has seen some renovations to make the course playable again in 2017. The course plays over 7,280 yards which is above average for par 70s that are typically featured on tour. In 2015, The Old White TPC was the 35th hardest out of a possible 52 courses. The greens and fairways are relatively easy to hit, but that doesn’t mean that isn’t something to target.
As we look through this relatively weak field, we’ll be looking to go with the grain by choosing golfers that are accurate off the tee and score well on the par 3s. This course can be overpowered to a certain extent, as well. As we go against the grain, we’ll be targeting some golfers with distance that can make up some ground on the couple of par 5s that this course has to offer.
Going With the Grain
- Driving Accuracy
- Strokes Gained: Approach
- Par 3 Birdie or Better
- Par 4 Birdie or Better
Kevin Kisner ($10,700) has put together an impressive season any way you want to measure it. After starting the year outside the top-50 in Official World Golf Rankings (OWGR), he’s climbed up to 24th thanks to his excellent cut making. Kisner has only missed one cut in 14 starts this year and is showing no signs of slowing down. He currently sits at 10th in Driving Accuracy and 6th in Strokes Gained: Approach on tour. Kisner is expensive relative to the field but makes for an excellent cash play this week.
The Greenbrier Classic will feature Phil Mickelson ($10,400) who is making his first start since the FedEx St. Jude Classic. But, more importantly, it will be the first time his brother is caddying for him instead of Bones. Phil is 14-of-14 so far this year on made cuts, and the change in caddy shouldn’t change that in this field. Mickelson is 8th in Strokes Gained: Approach and 20th in Par 4 Birdie or Better.
Tony Finau ($9,100) is another excellent cut maker and has been putting together a solid season in his own right. Finau’s all-around game allows him to perform well on any course, regardless of distance or par. Finau is 6th in Greens in Regulation and 25th in Par 4 Birdie or Better so far this season. He’s also made 13-of-16 cuts. His price allows for some more flexibility than the most expensive guys at the top, and he has as good of a chance as anyone above him to win come Sunday.
Tom Hoge ($6,000) is an interesting DraftKings tournament play at his price. Yes, he’s struggled a bit and only made 2-of-5 cuts recently. He has more cut equity than you’d think though, as he’s made 7-of-11 cuts. Hoge also happens to be 2nd on tour in Par 3 Birdie or Better and 28th in Strokes Gained: Approach. He isn’t someone you’re throwing into a cash lineup, but as a GPP consideration, he could pay dividends.
Honorable Mention: Webb Simpson ($10,100) & Keegan Bradley ($9,400)
Going Against the Grain
- Driving Distance
- Strokes Gained: Off the Tee
- Par 5 Birdie or Better
Danny Lee ($9,500) has a victory and a 16th place finish in his last two starts at this event. It isn’t just course history for Lee this week, though. He comes in with six straight made cuts including a third place finish a couple weeks back. He’ll look to keep the streak alive this week with his ability to score on the par 5s that The Old White TPC has to offer.
Sung Kang ($8,600) was an umbrella away from possibly winning last week at TPC Potomac. He’ll set his sights on West Virginia to continue his momentum from the Quicken Loans National. Kang is top-50 on tour in Strokes Gained: Off The Tee and 10th in Par 5 Birdie or Better. Kang is one of the more active golfers, making 19 starts so far this year and only missing five cuts. His price is higher than we’re used to seeing him, but it shouldn’t scare you off given the relative strength of this field compared to most weeks.
Xander Schauffele ($7,900) continues his streak of solid golf. He has the driving distance (17th on Tour) and the accuracy on approach (19th in Greens in Regulation) to compete at a course like this. Schauffele has been climbing up the OWGR with his play this year, and I don’t see that coming to a stop this week. I’d consider Schauffele in both GPPs and cash.
Honorable Mention: Brandon Hagy ($6,200) & Jason Kokrak ($8,700)
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