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BlogWGC-Mexico Preview and Picks

WGC-Mexico Championship

March 2nd – 5th, 2017

Club de Golf Chapultepec

Mexico City, Mexico

Par: 71 / Yardage: 7,330

Purse: $9.75 million

with $1,660,000 to the winner

Defending Champion:
Adam Scott

by Sal Johnson

Founder, Chief Data Officer, GOLFstats

E-mail me at:
sal@golfstats.com

This week’s field includes:

The field includes all 49 of the top 50 in the latest Official World Rankings.  Not playing is #2 Jason Day who had the flu and ear infection and withdrew on Sunday.

The field one includes 14 of the top 25 on the FedEx point standings for 2017.  Those top-25  players in the field are: #1 Hideki Matsuyama, #2 Justin Thomas, #3 Jordan Spieth, #4 Pat Perez, #5 Brendan Steele, #6 Dustin Johnson, #7 Gary Woodland, #8 Jon Rahm, #9 Mackenzie Hughes, #10 Rickie Fowler, #15 Justin Rose, #17 Russell Knox, #20 Daniel Berger and #24 Bill Haas.  The list of those not playing are Charles Howell III, Hudson Swafford, Rod Pampling, Adam Hadwin, Cody Gribble, Webb Simpson, Keegan Bradley, Martin List, Kelly Kraft and Brian Harman.

The field includes 15 players in the top 25 on this year’s PGA Tour money list.  Those top-25 players are the same as above adding #24 Scott Piercy.

The field includes 5 past champions: Adam Scott (2016), 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-Mexico 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-Mexico Championship in the last five years or check out our sortable 8-year glance at the WGC-Mexico Championship.

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

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 Genesis Open Super 6 Perth Pebble Beach Maybank Open Phoenix Open Dubai Desert Farmers Qatar Masters CareerBuilder Abu Dhabi Sony Open SBS T. of Champions
Dustin Johnson
(302 pts)
DNP Win
(132)
DNP 3
(90)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP T2
(66.67)
DNP T6
(20)
Jordan Spieth
(250 pts)
DNP T22
(28)
DNP Win
(132)
DNP T9
(30)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP 3
(30)
T3
(30)
Gary Woodland
(203.33 pts)
T2
(100)
DNP DNP T5
(70)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP T20
(20)
DNP DNP DNP T6
(20)
DNP
Jon Rahm
(191.33 pts)
DNP DNP DNP T5
(70)
DNP T16
(22.67)
DNP Win
(88)
DNP T34
(10.67)
DNP DNP DNP
Rickie Fowler
(188 pts)
Win
(132)
DNP DNP DNP DNP T4
(53.33)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP T36
(9.33)
DNP DNP
Justin Rose
(177.67 pts)
DNP T4
(80)
DNP T39
(11)
DNP DNP DNP T4
(53.33)
DNP DNP DNP 2
(33.33)
DNP
Louis Oosthuizen
(165 pts)
T21
(29)
DNP 5
(70)
DNP DNP 3
(60)
DNP T41
(6)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Tyrrell Hatton
(164.67 pts)
T4
(80)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T3
(60)
DNP DNP DNP T13
(24.67)
DNP DNP
Bernd Wiesberger
(164 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP 3
(90)
DNP T32
(12)
DNP T37
(8.67)
DNP T4
(53.33)
DNP DNP
Martin Kaymer
(152.67 pts)
T4
(80)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T23
(18)
DNP T48
(1.33)
DNP T4
(53.33)
DNP DNP
Brendan Steele
(149.67 pts)
T14
(36)
T39
(11)
DNP DNP DNP T16
(22.67)
DNP T20
(20)
DNP T6
(40)
DNP DNP T6
(20)
Jhonattan Vegas
(147 pts)
T4
(80)
T15
(35)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T28
(14.67)
DNP T34
(10.67)
DNP DNP T30
(6.67)
Pat Perez
(138 pts)
DNP T28
(22)
DNP T14
(36)
DNP WD
(-3.33)
DNP T4
(53.33)
DNP DNP DNP T69
(0)
T3
(30)
Hideki Matsuyama
(130.33 pts)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP Win
(88)
DNP T33
(11.33)
DNP DNP DNP T27
(7.67)
2
(33.33)
Sergio Garcia
(125 pts)
T14
(36)
T49
(1)
DNP DNP DNP DNP Win
(88)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
David Lipsky
(118.67 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP 2
(100)
DNP T42
(5.33)
DNP T41
(6)
DNP T39
(7.33)
DNP DNP
Rafael Cabrera-Bello
(115.67 pts)
T37
(13)
DNP DNP DNP T34
(16)
DNP T11
(26)
DNP T6
(40)
DNP T19
(20.67)
DNP DNP
Tommy Fleetwood
(112.67 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP T12
(38)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP Win
(88)
DNP DNP
Fabrizio Zanotti
(112 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP Win
(132)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP
Brandt Snedeker
(108.67 pts)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP 4
(80)
DNP DNP DNP T9
(30)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
T14
(12)
Kevin Na
(107.33 pts)
DNP T4
(80)
DNP DNP DNP T16
(22.67)
DNP DNP DNP T70
(0)
DNP T36
(4.67)
DNP
Thomas Pieters
(101.33 pts)
CUT
(-10)
T2
(100)
DNP DNP DNP DNP T23
(18)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP
Henrik Stenson
(100 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP 2
(66.67)
DNP DNP DNP T8
(33.33)
DNP DNP
Jeunghun Wang
(97.33 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP Win
(88)
DNP 11
(26)
DNP DNP
Kevin Kisner
(85.33 pts)
T48
(2)
DNP DNP T10
(40)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T25
(16.67)
DNP T4
(26.67)
DNP
Sean O’Hair
(84 pts)
T11
(39)
DNP DNP T66
(0)
DNP T47
(2)
DNP DNP DNP T9
(30)
DNP T11
(13)
DNP
Justin Thomas
(82.33 pts)
CUT
(-10)
T39
(11)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP Win
(44)
Win
(44)
Pablo Larrazabal
(82.33 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP T29
(21)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP T48
(1.33)
DNP T2
(66.67)
DNP DNP
Phil Mickelson
(82 pts)
DNP T34
(16)
DNP 65
(0)
DNP T16
(22.67)
DNP T14
(24)
DNP T21
(19.33)
DNP DNP DNP
Lee Westwood
(75.33 pts)
DNP DNP DNP DNP T26
(24)
DNP T23
(18)
DNP DNP DNP T8
(33.33)
DNP DNP
Francesco Molinari
(75.33 pts)
T14
(36)
CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T14
(24)
DNP T12
(25.33)
DNP DNP DNP
Adam Scott
(75 pts)
T14
(36)
T11
(39)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Bill Haas
(73.33 pts)
DNP T11
(39)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T17
(22)
DNP T13
(12.33)
DNP
Jimmy Walker
(73 pts)
T21
(29)
T11
(39)
DNP T55
(0)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
T9
(15)
Patrick Reed
(72.33 pts)
DNP T59
(0)
DNP T23
(27)
DNP T68
(0)
DNP DNP DNP T12
(25.33)
DNP DNP T6
(20)

How Player Rankings are Computed

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

Player Honda Genesis Open Super 6 Perth Pebble Beach Maybank Open Phoenix Open Dubai Desert Farmers Qatar Masters CareerBuilder Abu Dhabi Sony Open SBS T. of Champions
Si Woo Kim
(-33.33 pts)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP WD
(-3.33)
DNP DNP DNP T91
(0)
T30
(6.67)
Brooks Koepka
(-21.33 pts)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP T42
(5.33)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Marcus Fraser
(-20 pts)
DNP DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Charl Schwartzel
(-20 pts)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Kevin Chappell
(-14.67 pts)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP T48
(2)
DNP 75
(0)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Soren Kjeldsen
(-13.67 pts)
T37
(13)
CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP
Scott Piercy
(-4 pts)
DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP T55
(0)
DNP 73
(0)
DNP DNP DNP T41
(6)
DNP T57
(0)
DNP
Bubba Watson
(-3.33 pts)
DNP WD
(-5)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T25
(8.33)
Roberto Castro
(-1.33 pts)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-10)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP T28
(14.67)
DNP T50
(0.67)
DNP DNP DNP
Mike Hendry
(0 pts)
DNP DNP T55
(0)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP

How Player Rankings are Computed

The Buzz:

  • So for the first time since 1962, a PGA Tour event won’t be held at Doral and the Miami area.  Shame, but the tour had no choice last year with Donald Trump running for president.  You see the PGA Tour has a very clean record with tournament sponsors and they will do everything possible to make sure there is no friction.  With Donald Trump as president you will have friction, not from the fact that he is president but from the fact that there are always going to be people that disagree with the president.  It’s impossible for him to have a 100% positive feedback so for a sponsor to have it’s tournament at a Trump course would cause problems.  Frankly I will say that as long as Trump is president, the PGA Tour will avoid a Trump property.  The same thing with the R&A, they really love the changes made to Turnberry and feel it can hold a British Open, but won’t go through until Trump is no longer President.
  • So it’s off to Mexico and a brand new venue Club de Golf Chapultepec.  The course is 10 miles from downtown Mexico City and is one of the countries most popular courses.  Will it become a hit with the players is up for debate but I would say that going to Mexico City is a bit uncomfortable for many.  Players will stick to the hotel and golf course, making sure not to get into any trouble wondering someplace they shouldn’t be.  Now I attended the 2002 World Cup when it was played in Puerto Vallarta and I found it great.  But that was a small resort town, we were by the sea only a couple of miles from the course and there was no problems.  Mexico City is a much different place in size and scope, still the PGA Tour wouldn’t go anyplace that would put players, officials or media in harms way, so we will probably not hear of any problems.
  • One thing we will hear is that the date of this tournament has to change and played inbetween the west coast and Florida swings.  The field at Honda was weak, mostly because there was no back to back south Florida events.  So even with a change, your not going to get the same amount of people playing at the Honda.  It’s like if the Tournament of Champions moved away from Hawaii, it would effect the Sony Open.  So we had better get use to this venue or at least this event in Mexico.  There is a seven year contact so we will have a few years to work things out.

Last week’s Rickie Fowler win

A good win for Fowler who hasn’t won since the 2015 Deutsche Bank Championship.  For him he was awesome his first 54 holes, playing them in 13 under.  He entered the final round with a four shot lead, but looked very shaky with bogeys at 4 and 9, but his double bogey at 6 almost killed him.  What saved Fowler was his putter, he made three putts over 23 feet and for the day made 134 feet of putts which was the best for the day.  By the time he got to the back nine the lead was just about gone, but he made birdies at 12 and 13 to gain back his lead and hung on playing the bear trap in even par.  Fowler bogey 17 and 18 for a 71, but it was good enough for a four shot win.

Stat wise he wasn’t that impressive, finishing T-17th in driving accuracy and T-18th in greens hit.  Fowler shined with the putter, he was 2nd in strokes gained putting as he made 57 of 57 from seven feet and in.  He was also good in the 10 to 15 foot range making 5 of 7 putts in that range.

One big key to Fowler’s game was changing to a new, shorter driver which help him hit more fairways.  One impressive item is his three month run which in six events since the WGC-HSBC Champions in November, he has a win and four top-ten finishes.  He did miss the cut at Torrey Pines, but since got a T-4th at Phoenix and now the win.

The big question for the future, Fowler is only 28 and with good play could join the ranks of Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Hideki Matsuyama.  He showed a lot in 2014 and ’15, specially in the majors in 2014 in which he finished T-5th in the Masters, T-2nd at the U.S. Open, T-2nd at the British Open and T-3rd at the PGA Championship.  So we will see if this is a banner year for Rickie.

He’s back

After being sidelined for two months due to fractured ribs, Rory McIlroy is returning to action.  He hasn’t played since the South African Open where he finished 2nd, and has been very careful to let the ribs heal.  He just started playing two weeks ago and found himself on February 19th playing with President Trump.  McIlroy told James Corrigan of the Telegraph that he has worked hard on his short game and it’s really good right now.  He played on Monday in the Seminole Pro-Am in South Florida and flew down on Tuesday for his first look at Club de Golf Chapultepec.  He has altered his schedule and will play in the Arnold Palmer, followed by the WGC Match Play before making a decision if he needs to play at the Shell Houston Open the week before the Masters.  It will be interesting to see how McIlroy’s game will be this week, he was playing really well at the South African Open and was on pace to get ready for the Masters.

Things you need to know about the WCG-Mexico championship

  • After ten years at Trump National Doral, it’s off to Mexico for the first year of a new sponsorship and new course.  For those on the PGA Tour this will be the second World Golf Championship of the 2016, the WCG-Mexico championship will be a 72-hole, stroke-play event with a limited field of 77 players.  It will include the top-50 players in the World Golf Ranking plus the top-30 from the FedEx Cup point list from 2016, the top-10 of the 2016-17 FedEx Cup standings, the top-20 from the final 2016 Race To Dubai and the top-10 from the 2017 Race to Dubai standings.  Also the top-2 from the 2016 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 event got it’s start in 1999 when it was played for two years at Valderamma in Spain.  From there it popped around, first to Mount Juliet in Ireland, then Capital City Club in Georgia before returning to Mount Juliet in 2003.  The next year it moved to Harding Park in San Francisco and then back to Europe and the Grove outside of London.  After that it settled to Doral, after the course lost the Ford Championship at Doral which was on the PGA Tour between 1962 – 2006.  Now the tournament has a new home in Mexico with Grup Salinas, a collection of companies based in Mexico City primarily involved in retail, television, telecommunications and other businesses.  The agreement is for seven years through 2023.

Course information:

  • Club de Golf Chapultepec
  • Mexico City, Mexico.
  • 7,330 yards     Par 35-36–71
  • A private course 10 miles from downtown Mexico City.  The club was design by U.S. Open winner Willie Smith, who work on the course during the Mexican Revolution.  It was completed and opened in 1921.  In 1944 it held the first Mexican Open and was the host 14 times before Percy Clifford came in a completely renovated the course.
  • Club de Golf Chapultepec is a private course and one of the big characteristics of the venue is that it’s heavily tree-lined and sits at an elevation of between 7,603 and 7,835 feet above sea level.  So this course will be the highest course ever played on the PGA Tour.  This year there is only one other course at a high elevation and that is the Barracuda Championship  in Reno-Tahoe, Nevada.  The Montreux G&CC plays between 5,476 and 5,953.  So with the high elevation at Chapultepec, the yardage of 7,330 will be considerably shorter.  With low humidty, the course will play between 10 and 13% shorter, so we are talking about the course playing about 6,660 yards.
  • One of the things that will protect the course is the trees and the fact that of the 14 par 4s and 5s, only one hole will play straight away, the par 5 sixth hole.  The rest will bend around and with these guys about to drive it way over 300 yards, the course may force many to play off the tee with irons so that they don’t run it through the fairways and into the trees.  In a way this course is like Colonial in Fort Worth, you just can’t drive it too far, the doglegs get you in trouble.  So Chapultepec will be a thinking man’s course that could favor a short hitter.
  • The fairways are kikuyu and the greens are a mix of Poa annua and bent. They are a bit under the average size of greens and just like at Riviera, the venue of the Genesis played two weeks ago it will take a bit of patient to putt on the greens.  Remember the golden rule with Poa annua greens, if it’s sunny and hot, the greens will grow inconsistent and become very bumpy.  One of the reasons the greens two weeks ago at Riviera were easier to putt, there was lot’s of rain and no sun, so the poa never really green, making things easier.  The greens have lot’s of slope and will be firm, so it will take precision shots to not only hold the greens but get it close.  Off the tee there are 12 fairway bunkers but again in fast and dry conditions, look for players to find themselves in the trees which will create problems.  There are a total of 62 bunkers on the course and water will come into play on only three holes, six, seven and seventeen.
  • The last big event held on the course was the 2014 Mexico Open, which is now the PGA Tour LatinoAmerica.  It was won by Oscar Alvarez, with a score of 17 under par, 271.  At the time it played to a par 72 as the 8th hole has been reduced from a par 5 to 4.  For that event the course played to a 72.546 avearge and was played in the summer time.
  • Still the big question will be if the high elevation helps players overpower the course, but with the doglegs and the maturity of the trees I don’t see that happening.  One bit of the puzzle, when the course held the Mexican Open, Ben Crenshaw won it in 1981 and Jay Haas in 1991.  Both of these players hit it on the short side, so that could be a bit of a puzzle on what to expect this week.

For those wondering were our course keys are, since this is the first year of this course, there is no course keys from past tournaments.

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

Key stat for the winner:

Lot’s of patient in first learning the course and second figuring out the best way to play it under a person’s game.  Since the greens have poa in them, look for putting to be tough, specially if the sun is out all day and the greens started growing inconsistently which will make them bumpy.  But it will take some time for local knowledge to set in and the players learn the course

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

  • Solid shotmakers, this course has some of the same traits as Riviera, it was built around the same period and will look a lot like it.  Since most of the players in the field don’t play in the Barracuda Championship, the altitude adjustment will be tricky.  At close to 8,000 feet the ball will not only carry further, but the ball won’t spin as much making it not only harder to curve, but harder to hold the greens.  The course will be dry from a lack of rain, but kikuyu fairways will be soft and not have much run in them.
  • In looking at the long range weather for the week the first three days will be perfect, in the middle 70s with no rain and very low hunidity.  Sunday could see some showers in the afternoon, for all days of the tournament the winds will be below 10 mph.
  • As with Riviera any kind of Poa annua will make the greens very hard to judge and putt.  So look for the good putters to do well.
  • All three Par 5s aren’t a push over, it will be interesting to see if they are reachable.  the 6th and 11th are over 620 yards, while the 15th is 575 but the fairways have a lot of twist that will make them hard to position the ball.
  • The par 3s will also play hard, look for the winner to be right around par for the four holes.
  • In looking at the par 4s, four of them play under 400 yards, but I don’t see any of them being driven since they are all protected with lot’s of big trees.  Still look for the winner to be between 7 and 10 under on the par 4s for the week.
  • Last but not least past results of this event is meaningless.  Not only is the course different but the region and conditions are totally different meaning that past history means nothing.  So you have to place more on a players history in the last 8 weeks.

 

Who to watch for at the WGC-Mexico Championship

Best Bets:

Dustin Johnson

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T14 Win T4 T12 T35 2 T56 T35

This is easy, Chapultepec will resemble Riviera, the course Johnson won at two weeks ago. The key for Johnson will be the driver, if he can trend through the tight fairways of Chapultepec, also putting well there is no chance for anyone else.

Jordan Spieth

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T17 T17 T34

Still like the fact that he is the best putter period and that solves a lot of the problems of getting used to a new course.

Tyrrell Hatton

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
First time playing in this event

This guy is for real and playing very well right now. He is a world traveler and knows how to adjust to new courses fast, so don’t underestimate him.

Best of the rest:

Justin Rose

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T17 55 T34 T8 Win T42 T20 T15

Game has improved this year, he was T-4th at Riviera and I think will have a very good week this year.

Martin Kaymer

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T42 T31 T58 T49 T20 T24 T3 T35 T57

A great shotmaker that will love playing at Chapultepec.

Henrik Stenson

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T28 T4 T16 T37 T77 T57 T19 T13 T3

This is a guy that can adapt easily on any kind of course, he has proven it with his good play in the U.S. and British Open’s. Stenson’s last start was a runner-up finish in Dubai.

Phil Mickelson

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
5 T31 T16 T3 T43 T55 T14 Win T20 T23 T29

Yes Phil Mickelson, he is a shotmaker and if he can get his putter going will contend this week.

Adam Scott

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
Win T4 T25 T3 T13 T6 T50 T66 T9 T61 T2 T29

Can’t rule him out, course is perfect for him and he has played good in past at Riviera.

Solid contenders

Paul Casey

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
7 T38 T51 T18 T6 T31 T51 T9 T56

His game has really come along and he could do very well on this shot makers paradise.

Thomas Pieters

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
First time playing in this event

Watch out, he showed us a lot at Riviera and even though he missed the cut at the Honda, his game will be perfect for Chapultepec.

Sergio Garcia

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T11 T31 T16 T3 T60 T37 T31 T15 T3 T32 T3

Disappointing results at Riviera and Honda, still this is a shotmaker course and Sergio is one of the best in the world at this, so I give him a chance.

Matt Kuchar

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T28 T23 T13 T35 T8 5 T3

Has a good track record at Riviera along with being a great shotmaker, he is a person that could slip right under the radar screens.

Long shots that could come through:

Francesco Molinari

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T25 T28 T13 T3 T14

He bounced back from missing the cut at Riviera to a T-14th at Honda. He did play at the height of the really bad weather in L.A. so I have to think that he will play great this week.

Hideto Tanihara

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
70

A player that won’t be on many radar screens this week, this guy has five top-15 finishes in his last seven starts. He also won at the end of the year in Japan and has won three times in Japan in the last six months.

Jhonattan Vegas

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T31

His game has been sharp of late.

Not this week:

Rickie Fowler

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T8 T12 T44 T35 T45 8

Know that he is hot finishing with a win and a T-4th in his Phoenix start, but with that victory just can’t see him adjusting to totally different conditions from PGA National last week to Chapultepec this week.  Think that if this was Doral he would have a great chance, but having to learn a new course could be a problem for him this week.

Rory McIlroy

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T3 T9 T25 T8 3 T10 T65 T20

Have to think he will be a bit rusty and it could take a round or two to bounce back. He says that his putting is good right now, I am also worried that he didn’t arrive till Tuesday and that two days of preparation isn’t enough to learn about this course.

Hideki Matsuyama

2017 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08 ’07 ’06 ’05
T35 T23 T34

Think he may be in a lull right now, this course may not suit his game.

Comments

  1. Andrzej S says:

    Mollinari top 15: seven of his past eight starts.

  2. Andrzelj,
    You are right on Molinari, he has been very consistent for almost a year now and could win on the PGA Tour in the months ahead. Of course the one time that I liked him at Genesis two weeks ago, he missed the cut. But he also had terrible tee times and had to endure the worst of the weather, so we will see what happens but I expect him to have a good week.

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