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BlogWGC-Cadillac Preview and Picks

WGC-Cadillac Championship

March 3rd – 6th, 2016

Trump National Doral

Miami, Fla.

Par: 72 / Yardage: 7,528

Purse: $9.5 million

with $1,612,432 to the winner

Defending Champion:
Dustin Johnson

by Sal Johnson

Founder, Chief Data Officer, GOLFstats

E-mail me at:
sal@golfstats.com

Join our WGC-Cadillac blog…

We want you all to be completely up to date on everything going on from Doral.  I will be doing it with David Barrett, who was the chief of research at Golf World before it folded.  David has a keen sense in stats and loves playing Draft Kings on a weekly basis.  We are also going to give you our picks for Draft Kings and other items.  In the days ahead we will also have a Facebook page that will be devoted to this subject and hopefully it can create a stir in which we can all help each other.

Hope you enjoy this, each week will have it’s own blog devoted to the tournament from that week.

Also, we will be updating this blog during the tournament on Thursday through Sunday, so join us during those days.

You can find it thought this link:

This week’s field includes:

The field includes all 47 of the top 50 in the latest Official World Rankings.  Those not playing are #14 Jim Furyk (wrist surgery), #34 Thongchai Jaidee (ill) and #49 Jaco Van Zyl (qualified Sunday and didn’t want to change his plans to make the trip from South Africa to Miami).

This will be the first time since the PGA Championship that all top-ten players will be together.

The field includes 18 of the top 25 on the FedEx point standings for 2016.  Those top-25  players in the field are: #1 Brandt Snedeker, #2 Kevin Kisner, #3 Adam Scott, #4 Russell Knox, #5 Justin Thomas, #6 Kevin Na, #7 Graeme McDowell, #8 Smylie Kaufman, #9 Fabian Gomez, #10 Jason Dufner, #11 Hideki Matsuyama, #12 Bubba Watson, #13 Emiliano Grillo, #14 Jordan Spieth, #16 Rickie Fowler, #17 Patrick Reed, #18 Phil Mickelson and #21 David Lingmerth

The field includes 18 players in the top 25 on this year’s PGA Tour money list.  Those top-25 players not in the field are: #1 Adam Scott, #2 Kevin Kisner, #3 Brandt Snedeker, #4 Russell Knox, #5 Justin Thomas, #6 Kevin Na, #7 Graeme McDowell, #8 Hideki Matsuyama, #9 Smylie Kaufman, #10 Bubba Watson, #11 Fabian Gomez, #12 Jordan Spieth, #13 Jason Dufner, #14 Rickie Fowler, #16 Emiliano Grillo, #17 Patrick Reed, #19 Phil Mickelson and #22 David Lingmerth

The field includes 4 past champions: Dustin Johnson (2015), Patrick Reed (2014), Justin Rose (2012) and Phil Mickelson (2009).

A perfect way for fantasy golfers to check on the past performance of all the players in the WGC-Cadillac Championship field is our performance chart listed by average finish.  Another way to check who is the best is through a special formula worked out in Golfstats that gives us the best average performances at the WGC-Cadillac Championship in the last five years or check out our sortable 8-year glance at the WGC-Cadillac Championship.

A good cheat sheet is this list of odds from the top bookmakers in England.

Another cheat sheet is this list of odds from the top bookmaker in Las Vegas.

**NOTE**

One thing to look for is our new GOLFstats IQ.  For those that play in fantasy golf it’s a perfect way to help you pick those players in Draft Kings and Victiv games.  You can customize the list of those in the tournaments, to look back a couple or many years of tournament stats and you can go back a couple or ten weeks prior to the tournament.  On top of that, all the stats are fully sortable to help you pick your six players, we even give you their value for the week to help you chose.

That’s GOLFstats IQ, give it a try and tell us what you think of it

24/7 GOLF

How would you like to have Total Golf Knowledge At Your Fingertips??

We have the perfect solution for you.  If you own a Iphone or a Ipad we have developed a perfect app called 24/7 GOLF.

It gives you everything that you need to know about golf, you have all the players results and every tournament result, again at your fingertips.  It’s very easy to use and you can take a good amout of GOLFstats with you everyplace.  No need to get home and check things out on your computer at home, you can answer any question with your Ipad.

So check it out, just hit this link to get 24/7 GOLF:

Screen Shot 2015-04-23 at 12.01.34 AM

Time to look at our who’s hot and who isn’t:

Who’s Hot in the field for the WGC-Cadillac Championship

Player Honda Classic Handa Perth Northern Trust Malaysian AT&T Pebble Tshwane Open Phoenix Open Dubai Classic Farmers Qatar Masters CareerBuilder Challenge Abu Dhabi Sony Open
Adam Scott
(232 pts)
Win
(132)
DNP T2
(100)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T56
(0)
Rickie Fowler
(208 pts)
T6
(60)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP 2
(66.67)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP Win
(88)
DNP
Louis Oosthuizen
(200 pts)
DNP Win
(132)
DNP T12
(38)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP T7
(36.67)
DNP DNP DNP
Phil Mickelson
(192.33 pts)
T37
(13)
DNP DNP DNP 2
(100)
DNP T11
(26)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP T3
(60)
DNP DNP
Rafael Cabrera-Bello
(171.33 pts)
DNP DNP DNP T36
(14)
DNP DNP DNP T2
(66.67)
DNP T2
(66.67)
DNP T14
(24)
DNP
J.B. Holmes
(158 pts)
DNP DNP T11
(39)
DNP T11
(39)
DNP T6
(40)
DNP T6
(40)
DNP DNP DNP DNP
Bubba Watson
(156 pts)
DNP DNP Win
(132)
DNP T70
(0)
DNP T14
(24)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Marcus Fraser
(153.67 pts)
DNP T15
(35)
DNP Win
(132)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP T59
(0)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP
Brandt Snedeker
(147.67 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP T35
(15)
DNP T33
(11.33)
DNP Win
(88)
DNP DNP DNP 2
(33.33)
Charl Schwartzel
(137 pts)
DNP DNP T45
(5)
DNP DNP Win
(132)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Sergio Garcia
(126.67 pts)
2
(100)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T7
(36.67)
DNP DNP DNP
Branden Grace
(124.67 pts)
CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP Win
(88)
DNP T5
(46.67)
DNP
Rory McIlroy
(120 pts)
CUT
(-10)
DNP T20
(30)
DNP DNP DNP DNP T6
(40)
DNP DNP DNP T3
(60)
DNP
Hideki Matsuyama
(115.33 pts)
WD
(-5)
DNP T11
(39)
DNP DNP DNP Win
(88)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP DNP
Dustin Johnson
(110.33 pts)
DNP DNP 4
(80)
DNP T41
(9)
DNP DNP DNP T18
(21.33)
DNP DNP DNP DNP
Andy Sullivan
(109.33 pts)
T26
(24)
DNP T68
(0)
DNP DNP DNP DNP T2
(66.67)
DNP DNP DNP T22
(18.67)
DNP
Jimmy Walker
(101.67 pts)
T43
(7)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP T11
(39)
DNP DNP DNP T4
(53.33)
DNP DNP DNP T13
(12.33)
Henrik Stenson
(100 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T6
(40)
DNP DNP DNP T3
(60)
DNP
Byeong-Hun An
(100 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T4
(53.33)
DNP DNP DNP T5
(46.67)
DNP
George Coetzee
(98.67 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T14
(36)
DNP T26
(16)
DNP T7
(36.67)
DNP T35
(10)
DNP
Jason Dufner
(96.33 pts)
T61
(0)
DNP T68
(0)
DNP T51
(0)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP Win
(88)
DNP T9
(15)
Billy Horschel
(94 pts)
T8
(50)
DNP T54
(0)
DNP DNP DNP T24
(17.33)
DNP T8
(33.33)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP
Danny Willett
(93 pts)
DNP DNP DNP T45
(5)
DNP DNP DNP Win
(88)
DNP DNP DNP T54
(0)
DNP
Justin Rose
(87.33 pts)
DNP DNP T16
(34)
DNP T6
(60)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP DNP
Harris English
(83.67 pts)
DNP DNP T39
(11)
DNP DNP DNP 3
(60)
DNP T31
(12.67)
DNP DNP DNP T56
(0)

How Player Rankings are Computed

Who’s Not Hot in the field for the WGC-Cadillac Championship

Player Honda Classic Handa Perth Northern Trust Malaysian AT&T Pebble Tshwane Open Phoenix Open Dubai Classic Farmers Qatar Masters CareerBuilder Challenge Abu Dhabi Sony Open
Daniel Berger
(-24 pts)
CUT
(-10)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP T58
(0)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP T42
(2.67)
Victor Dubuisson
(-16.67 pts)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP
Jordan Zunic
(-10 pts)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Kiradech Aphibarnrat
(-10 pts)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP T61
(0)
DNP T52
(0)
DNP T72
(0)
DNP
Steven Bowditch
(-7.67 pts)
DNP DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP T41
(9)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP 87
(0)
Matthew Fitzpatrick
(-7.33 pts)
CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP T45
(3.33)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP T26
(16)
DNP
Charley Hoffman
(-2 pts)
DNP DNP T63
(0)
DNP DNP DNP T51
(0)
DNP T43
(4.67)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP
Yusaku Miyazato
(0 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T70
(0)
Emiliano Grillo
(2.33 pts)
T74
(0)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T45
(3.33)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP T33
(5.67)
Scott Piercy
(5.67 pts)
CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T45
(3.33)
DNP T67
(0)
DNP DNP DNP T13
(12.33)

How Player Rankings are Computed

The Buzz:

Have to think that this week will be a bit uncomfortable for Tim Finchem and all the boys from Ponte Vedra.  As we have seen for the last couple of months, anything is possible with Donald Trump.  No matter what happens he is going to speak his mind and say what fits his fancy for the day.  That doesn’t happen on the PGA Tour who could be the most controlled organization in sports.  Finchem needs it that way because he has hundreds of sponsors that are paying millions of dollars to sponsor the PGA Tour.  Poet John Lydgate wrote these words that was later adapted by President Abraham Lincoln, “…you can’t please all of the people all of the time”.  You see for Tim Finchem those words don’t exist, he pleases all of the people all of the time that do business with the PGA Tour.

In the world of politics, most of those that run and then make it into office have a 50-50 love, hate relationship with their constituents.  You can basically say the same for Mr. Trump and that is the problem for Tim Finchem this week.  Trump is such a lightning rod who knows what could be said or done this week that will anger one of the many sponsors the PGA Tour is doing business with.  Could Trump’s politics be different than Cadillac’s president Johan de Nysschen?  Or could Trump upset those that run next weeks event sponsor Valspar or last week’s sponsor Honda.  Finchem may be in control of everything the PGA Tour is involved with, but he can’t control Trump which could spell problems.

Many feel the PGA tour will move this event next year.  Be a shame after playing 53 straight events at Doral, be a shame for Trump who has spent a small fortune redoing every part of Doral and bringing the course and the resort back from the dead.  But another problem for Finchem, let’s say that he decides for the best of the PGA Tour, it’s players and fans to not be involved with Trump, what happens if Trump does become President.  We know that the Donald has a memory of an elephant and you would have to think that if Finchem did embarrass Trump by moving away this event from Trump’s crown jewels, who knows what the Donald may do to repay Finchem and the gang.

You get it, Mr. Finchem and company will be earning their money and only hopping the week passes with no problems.

Things you need to know about the WCG-Cadillac championship:

  • We are back to Trump National Doral in the third year of the renovation and it will be interesting to see if the course plays as hard as it did the two previous years.  Of course wind is the key, on days that it blows this course is the hardest in the world. But on dry, perfect days the pros can go low.
  • The second World Golf Championship of the 2016, the WCG-Cadillac championship will be a 72-hole, stroke-play event with a limited field of 74 players.  It will include the top-50 players in the World Golf Ranking plus the top-30 from the FedEx Cup point list from 2015, the top-10 of the 2015-16 FedEx Cup standings, the top-20 from the final 2015 Race To Dubai and the top-10 from the 2016 Race to Dubai standings.  Also the top-2 from the 2013 Japan Golf Tour, Australasian Tour, Sunshine Tour and Asian Tour order of merit not otherwise exempt.
  • There will be no cut in the 72-hole event, which has an $9.5 million purse with the winner receiving $1.62 million.
  • This is only the second time that this event has been played at the same course back-to-back since the first two years at Valderamma.   Doral was the site of the Ford Championship of Doral between 1962 – 2006 and is now the home of the WGC-CA Championship.  In 2011 Cadillac took over sponsorship of this tournament.

Course information:

The Blue Monster at Trump National Doral

Doral, Fla.

  • 7,543 yards     Par 36-36–72
  • Doral is a public golf course, part of the Trump Doral resort.  In 2015 Doral was the 7th hardest course on the PGA Tour playing to an average of 73.24.  In 2014 the Blue Monster was the 3rd hardest course on the PGA Tour playing to a 73.852 average. In 2013, just before the major changes were made to the course, the Blue Monster was the 31 hardest course on the PGA Tour playing to a 71.354 average.
  • Doral was designed by Dick Wilson, with some help from Robert Von Hagge, and opened in 1962.  It has held a PGA Tour event on it every year since 1962.  In it’s first decade on the PGA Tour it was called one of the toughest courses in the world, thus it’s nickname “The Blue Monster”. Figures showed that it was one of the toughest courses on the PGA Tour in it’s first three decades, but a combination of better equipment, agronomy, players getting physically in shape and years with a lack of wind brought the scoring average down at Doral.
  • After the 1996 event, Doral officials closed the course and Raymond Floyd went about toughing and bringing the bite back to Doral.  He added 186 yards, put in an additional 18 bunkers, changed the grass from Rye to Bernuda and changed the design of the greens, basically in the interest of bring the teeth back to the event.  The renovation did just that.  In the years after the redesign, winds were tougher and scores went up to the levels that players didn’t like the combination of tough course with high winds complaining that the course was tricked up.  With marquee players not coming back, officials went through another renovation after the 2000 tournament, this time eliminating ten bunkers and softening up the greens.  In 2003 another 166 yards was added and in 2008 the greens were renovated with TifEagle.
  • With the passing of time, Doral again had another facelift after the 2013 event was played, this one probably the biggest of the bunch.  Gil Hanse was brought in and $18 million spent as 17 of the 18 holes were completely redone.  To honor the legendary 18th hole, it was the only hole not touched in the renovation.  Water comes into play more, with new hazards being placed at 1, 11, 14,15 and 16 and existing hazards coming more into play at 5 and 7.  Another 147 yards has been added and the course will play at 7,481, 542 yards more than in 1996 the year before it’s first renovation.

Here are some of the major changes to the course:

  • The lengthening of the 1st hole – 2013 scorecard yardage – 529 vs. 2014 yardage – 572. There is also water in play to the right of the first green.
  • The par 3, 9th hole has a number of new tee boxes including a back tee that can have it play as long as 200 yards. The green itself has moved closer to the 18th green which has created a new amphitheater of grandstands surrounding both the 18th and 9th greens.
  • The 10th tee has moved significantly to players’ left as part of the expansion of the new driving range. This makes for a much different tee shot to carry over water on the 10th tee. Additionally, the 10th green was moved back to lengthen the hole to 614 yards.
  • Some of the most exciting changes have happened on the finishing stretch. The par 3, 15th green for instance was a mostly non-descript 175-yard par 3. It is now a shorter hole at 153 yards, but much more water is in play with a peninsula green as part of the design.
  • The 16th hole was also shortened from 372 yards to 341. Players have a better view of the green with a number of trees removed, but water now comes closer to the green making this a true risk-reward hole.
  • The big question will be, how much harder will the course play this year?  Last year we saw a hard course that had some wind, the year before we saw a really hard course because the wind was up.  A big lesson was learned in the Floyd renovation in 1997.  That the true toughness of the course lies in Mother Nature, when the wind blows the course is very difficult.  So when there is no wind, the course is very easy.  What Floyd did was make a tougher course by adding bunkers and making the greens very hard.  In no wind, the course was tough and fair but in high winds the course was very unfair and impossible.  So that is the secret in any redesign, you have to make creative changes to not toughen the holes but make them play differently that takes a lot of thought to play.  On the whole the players liked the Hanse changes, they didn’t feel the course was tricked up to bring the scores up.  So maybe the folks at Doral have gotten it right.

Here is a new feature we have, a look at key stats that are important for those playing at Trump Doral:

This is based on the most important stats for Trump National Doral, based on data from last years WGC-Cadillac Championship, and using data from all the players in the field with stats from 2016. What we do is take there rank for each stat and then add up the four catagories.
The scoring average of the field at Doral in 2015 was 73.24, so with par being 72 that means the average score was a shot and a quarter over par, making Doral the 6th hardest course to score on in 2015 (only five courses played harder). It’s also important to see how the weather played a factor, last year weather was pretty good and winds were high three of the four days, but nothing to cause havoc. So that is the reason the scores went down compared to 2014 when the scoring average was 73.85 as high winds took it’s toll. This year the weather will be good on Thursday and Friday, with showers on Saturday and then partly cloudy on Sunday. Winds are predicted to be around 10 mph, with it growing to 13 mph on Sunday so it will be pretty good and I can see scores inch down a bit

In looking at the stats for Doral last year Greens hit, Driving Accuracy and scambling are important. Last we pick birdie or better percentage because last year it was near impossible to make a lot of birdies and eagles. Last year 13 courses were harder than Doral in making lot’s of birdies and eagles.

So how did the winner Dustin Johnson become victorious last year? In our key stats he ranked T-1st in greens in regulation, T-41st in strokes Fairway Accuracy and T-42nd in scrambling. He was T-5th in birdie or better percentage as ranked T-7th in making the most birdies.
*Greens in Regulation: Since the greens average 6,600 square feet normally they would be easy to hit. But since there is a lot of undulation, hitting it to the perfect place is important. Last year on the PGA Tour, the greens of Doral were the 8th hardest to hit. This has been the norm for Doral, in 2014 it ranked 5th, but in 2013 13th, in 2012 13th and 10th in 2011. So a player that hits lots of greens will have an advantage.

*Driving Accuracy: Percentage of fairways hit, last year Doral finished 5th in this stat and was 1st in 2014.

*Scrambling: No matter how good your game is, missing greens always happens so it’s important to salvage par. Last year Doral ranked 4th hardest in scrambling so it’s a hard stat for players on this course.

*Birdie or Better Percentage: The course is so demanding that making a lot of birdies and eagles aren’t possible. So players that are able to make a lot will do well on this course which ranked 15th in this stat on tour in 2015.

Field off of this year’s PGA Tour stats

Click any column title in the table header to sort columns.

For the rest of the players, hit this link:

Here are some of the secrets of what it takes to play well at the WGC-Cadillac Championship

Key stat for the winner:

In 2014 players saw a new course as 17 of the 18 holes has been altered and the fairways widen a bit.  All of the greens were redone and the course played totally different from previous years.  The change played a key part in making the course harder as it was 2 and a half shots harder between 2013 and 2014.  In past years the Blue Monster is only a monster in windy conditions, in 2014 and last year was like that as there were winds up to 36 mph.  So the winds played a key role in the courses scoring average.

Here is a chart that shows the history of wind at Doral and how it’s changed the scoring average of the course:

 

Year  Round          Wind Conditions        Day Scoring Average   Rank on Tour

2015    1                     15 to 25 MPH                       73.356                 T-9th hardest

2015    2                      6 to 12 MPH                       73.466                    7th hardest

2015    3                    10 to 20 MPH                       72.548                      11th

2015    4                     15 to 25 MPH                      73.589                  2nd hardest

2015  total                                                               73.238                7th hardest

 

2014    1      15 to 20 MPH, gusts to 30           73.809          4th hardest

2014    2      15 to 20 MPH, gusts to 36           76.000          1st hardest

2014    3              5 to 10 MPH                         72.574             12th

2014    4              5 to 10 MPH                         73.015              8th

2014  total                                                         73.852          3rd hardest

 

2013    1              8 to 15 MPH                         70.754          37th hardest

2013    2              6 to 12 MPH                         70.708             35th

2013    3             10 to 20 MPH                         71.400             27th

2013    4             15 to 25 MPH                         72.554             17th

2013  total                                                         71.354             31st

 

2012    1       15 to 25 MPH, gusts to 31         72.662             18th

2012    2             10 to 15 MPH                       69.919             42nd

2012    3             10 to 15 MPH                       70.110             45th

2012    4             15 to 25 MPH                       71.861             24th

2012  total                                                        71.137             38th

 

2011    1             10 to 20 MPH                        70.727             42nd

2011    2             10 to 20 MPH                       72.379             17th

2011    3             10 to 15 MPH                       70.682             33rd

2011    4             10 to 15 MPH                       72.121             19th

2011  total                                                       71.477             34th

 

2010    1             25 to 30 MPH                    72.574             19th

2010    2             15 to 25 MPH                    70.897             36th

2010    3             10 to 15 MPH                    71.603             21st

2010    4             12 to 22 MPH                    69.868             39th

2010  total                                                    71.235             34th

 

2009    1              5 to 18 MPH                 70.600             44th

2009    2             10 to 18 MPH                 70.519             42nd

2009    3             10 to 20 MPH                 70.810             33rd

2009    4             12 to 20 MPH                 71.734             21st

2009  total                                                 70.915             39th

 

2008    1             10 to 20 MPH                 70.899             43rd

2008    2              6 to 16 MPH                  72.329             25th

2008    3             10 to 20 MPH                 70.179             45th

2008    4              8 to 24 MPH                  70.727             38th

2008  total                                                 71.038             40th

 

2007    1      20 to 25 MPH , gusts to 30  73.397             13th

2007    2             15 to 25 MPH                 72.110             28th

2007    3             15 to 25 MPH                 72.562             15th

2007    4             15 to 25 MPH                 73.944              8th

2007  total                                                 73.000             16th

In looking at the long range weather for the week there will be winds of between 10 to 13 mph on everyday.  On Thursday and Friday temperatures will be 83 to 86 with no rain.  Saturday is the bad day, 50% chance of rain with most of it going away for Sunday’s final round.  Temperature’s will be in the low 80s over the weekend.

Here are some more key stats to look to for this week:

  • Solid shotmakers, since Doral demands ball control, especially if there is any wind.  In the last 17 years, televe of the winners at Doral (including the Ford Championship in Doral) have been in the top four in greens hit.  2009 was the first major change as Phil Mickelson ranked T33rd in this stat which is the highest any winner at Doral has done in greens hit.  In 2010 Ernie Els continue the trend as he was T2nd in greens hit, but in 2011 Nick Watney was T12th while in 2012 Justin Rose was T17th and Tiger Woods was T6th in 2013. In 2015 Patrick Reed ranked T28th and last year Dustin Johnson was T-1st.
  • Unimportant stat: Those that play well not only in Florida, but on Bermuda grasses will do well this week.  Interesting to note that since 1990 all the winners except for 1997 & 1999 champion Steve Elkington, 2008 champion Geoff Ogilvy, 2009 winner Phil Mickelson, 2011 winner Nick Watney, 2013 winner Justin Rose and 2014 winner Patrick Reed either grew up in Florida or live there.  Elkington and Ogilvy both grew up in Australia with Bermuda grass while Mickelson grew up in the San Diego area while Watney grew up in Northern California and Rose grew up in England and South Africa while Reed grew up in Texas.
  • Interesting to point out that since 1983 every winner except for Patrick Reed, Rocco Mediate and Bill Glasson were over 29 years old with four winners in their 40s.  The average age of the 17 winners at Doral is 34 and a half years old as last year’s winner Dustin Johnson was 30 years old
  • One more item on this, the PGA Tour has held a tournament at Doral since 1962.  In the 53 years there have been 38 different champion with only seven of them born in the Northeast or Northcentral United States.  Since 1990 there have only been three, all of them live in Florida today, the last was Jim Furyk in 2000.  So it only makes sense that the champion will be from a region of the Southeast, the South and Southwest of the United States, along with Australia, Great Britain and South Africa.  Since 1990, 18 of the 25 champions have had ties to the state of Florida. (Northeastearn or Northcentral winners)
  • Par 5s aren’t a push over, but have been conquered by the champions at Doral.  Since 1997 they have averaged playing them in 9-under par.  Woods played the par 5s in 2007 at 10-under while in 2008 Ogilvy played them in 6 under and Mickelson played them in 7 under in 2009.  In 2010 Ernie Els played them in 12 under par while Watney was 11 under on then in 2011, Justin Rose was 11 under on then in 2012, Tiger was 9 under in 2013 the same number that Patrick Reed was in 2014.  Last year Dustin Johnson was 6 under par.
  • Don’t be surprised to see a non-American winner this week.  Between 1962 and 1989 no international player won at Doral, but since then 11 of the 26 have been international winners.

 

 

Who to watch for at the WGC-Cadillac Championship

Best Bets:

Bubba Watson

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
3 T2 T18 2 72

He may not like the changes made to the course, but no matter what it suits him fine and he has the game to play well and win. He is 6th in greens hit this year, been in top-three at Doral, 3 of the last 4 years.

Dustin Johnson

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
Win T4 T12 T35 2 T56 T35

If Dustin could play ten events on this course, he could easily win five of them, this course sets up so well for him. Good in wind, can overpower the course and is 3rd in birdie and better percentage.

J.B. Holmes

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
2 T18 T40

6th on tour this year in strokes gained too-to-green. THis is a course that he can hit it long and chase it down to an easy shot to the green.

Best of the rest:

Adam Scott

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T4 T25 T3 T13 T6 T50 T66 T9 T61 T2 T29 T36

Don’t worry about his winning last week, his game will be just as fresh this week. 2nd on tour in strokes gained tee-to-green, he has the game to do well on this course like he did last week.

Charl Schwartzel

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T44 T9 T16 T4 T24 2 T35 T41 T18

The guy can play well on this course, he has won twice in the last three months.

Phil Mickelson

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T31 T16 T3 T43 T55 T14 Win T20 T23 T29

Still think he has another Florida win left in him and you never know it could be this week.

Brooks Koepka

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T17

Has played well this year, think he will surprise us on before Augusta.

Bill Haas

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T7 T6 T43 T29 T31 T6

Has some good results on this course, surprised that he missed the cut at Northern Trust but that should be a problem.

Danny Willett

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T12

One of those Europeans that could surprise and win this event

Solid contenders normally, but not this week:

Rory McIlroy

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T9 T25 T8 3 T10 T65 T20

Normally he would be one of the favorites, but not in my book. He is struggling and he will do so for a couple more events before working things out.

Jordan Spieth

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T17 T34

I don’t punish him because he missed the cut in L.A., but I don’t think he is a good fit for this course. Yes you can never count out a great putter, specially if he gets hot, but he just hasn’t given us anything to be comfortable with.

Jason Day

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T31 T33 T20 T45

Has had a very slow start, his game just doesn’t carry over on this course.

Sergio Garcia

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T31 T16 T3 T60 T37 T31 T15 T3 T32 T3 T4

What more can we say, this course is great but he may have too many bad memories from the Honda.

Long shots that could come through:

Jamie Donaldson

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
T44 T2 T63

Came close in 2014, he has the game to win, you never know.

Soren Kjeldsen

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
60 T7 11

Has had a consistent year, in 2009 finished T-7th at Doral.

Emillano Grillo

2016 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05 ’04
First time playing in this event

Can overpower this course, playing it for the first time.

Comments

  1. Alfred Musketa says:

    “Those top-25 players not in the field are: #1 Adam Scott, #2 Kevin Kisner, #3 Brandt Snedeker, #4 Russell Knox, #5 Justin Thomas, #6 Kevin Na, #7 Graeme McDowell, #8 Hideki Matsuyama, #9 Smylie Kaufman, #10 Bubba Watson, #11 Fabian Gomez, #12 Jordan Spieth, #13 Jason Dufner, #14 Rickie Fowler, #16 Emiliano Grillo, #17 Patrick Reed, #19 Phil Mickelson and #22 David Lingmerth”…,,not?….whose not in?

  2. Alfred Musketa says:

    what is the yardage this week??

  3. Alfred, guess your saying I should of put them in.
    The players in the top-25 of the money list not at Doral are #15 Vaughn Taylor, #18 Jason Bohn, #20 Peter Malnati, #21 K.J. Choi, #23 Freddie Jacobson, #24 William McGirt and #25 Jason Kokrak.

  4. 7,528

  5. Chris C says:

    How no Fowler in Best Bets or solid contenders?

  6. I have to get this preview done on Monday’s because I feel that people what to see this early, not late. One of the problems I find with other sites, especially Golfweek is they are too late for most people. Most viewers want their research material as soon as possible, so that is why all our stuff is the first site out with things, like having the performance chart out Sat/Sunday, then our course key chart and preview last Monday.
    The problem with getting this stuff done early is sometimes you miss things, when I completed this preview I had a bad taste in my month on Fowler after what happened over the weekend in Honda and I thought he wouldn’t do well this week.

    I was wrong at the time and agree with you, he should of been on the list.

    So that is why we are now doing a daily, 7 day a week fantasy golf blog, have you looked at it?
    https://www.golfstats.com/2016/03/01/wgc-cadillac-daily-fantasy-blog/
    By doing this blog it gives us more time to explore how a player is doing and his thoughts and what he has working on. You will see that the one we did for both Honda and Cadillac is pretty up to date and loaded with a lot of information. We have a different strategy over other publications in which we try to write about what could happen in the future based on what has happened in the past. That is why we feel this blog is important to read, not only on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, but also during the tournament when we look at what is happening and how it relates to the future for the players.
    We are also about to launch a Facebook page in which we can share information easier with more people and they can respond and give us their thoughts on Fantasy Golf, a place for everyone to discuss Fantasy Golf.

    So for everyone reading this go up and read the blog, you will see that I had a change of heart on Rickie.
    Also think all of you will enjoy the recent addition to GOLFstats material.

  7. Thanks Sal. I do look at your blog. I initially wondered why he wasn’t there and then my thoughts were reinforced when I read your blog so I just figured I would ask.

    Your info is great. I look forward to it every week.

    Why not update your picks on Wednesday?

    Once again, thanks!

  8. Chris, the blog is doing that more, we have Draft Kings picks and our thinking is more up to date than this perview. Also if we update this preview people would be upset with us that we changed our minds and screwed up there picks, so the only thing we do is if a player withdraws put up that they have withdrawn from the event.
    Also it’s amazing a lot of small fantasy golf games have to get their picks in on Wednesday afternoons. So people write me that they are playing a game in which they can swap out players, but it has to be done in the afternoon on Wednesday. One last thing, we have a lot of members in Australia and Asia, they are almost a full day ahead of me in Washington D.C. So if I post something on Monday evening in Washington, those in Australia aren’t getting it until Tuesday afternoon their time. So a lot of folks I have to cater to.

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