DraftKings Picks for Texas, China

by Sal Johnson

Founder, Chief Data Officer, GOLFstats

E-mail me at:

DrafKings picks for the week

Please join our fantasy game of the week on Draftkings
Want to thank the 199 of you that participated in our seventh GOLFstats.com fantasy game on DraftKings last week at the Heritage. Amazing how competitive the game has gotten, we seem to get the best fantasy players to participate in our game. For this week’s Valero Texas Open we are looking at a 200 players field. The cost is the same, $5 and will pay off the top-20 players. The winner will get $135, 2nd $108, 3rd $81. Those between 16th and 20th will get $18. Here is the invite and a link to get into the game, hope you join us.

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Hit this link to join our DrafKings Fantasy Game

As for last week for the Heritage game, congratulations to brownbearlu for winning with the picks of Wesley Bryan (Win), Luke Donald (2nd), Patrick Cantlay (T-3rd), Adam Hadwin (T-22nd), Tyrrell Hatton (T-29th) and Marc Leishman (T-44th). I didn’t watch the final round, but when I saw the results have to say was a bit surprise to see Bryan win, but for our game 18% of you picked Bryan and even more surprisingly 12% of you picked Cantlay. In second place was chuck2263 who also had Bryan along with Heybillp who also had Bryan. The main theme of all the players in the top-ten was making the cut, the highest rank player was brink7 who finished 11th in our game and he picked Bryan and runner-up Luke Donald. So a lot of folks really know had to pick players and aren’t afraid of choosing guys like Bryan or Patrick Cantlay.

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So how did I do last week?
I was stung with Jim Furyk playing his final nine on Friday in 40 to miss the cut by a shot. ┬áNothing worst that a guy shooting 68 the first day to be in the top-20, then play his first nine on Friday in 1 under and then making four bogeys on his final six holes to miss the cut by a shot . If you had anyone miss the cut this week you suffered big time, event picking guys like Luke Donald (2nd), Russell Knox and Matt Kuchar (T-11th) I was way down the list and struggled. I risked $70 and won a game worth $6, so I was a $63 loser. On the European Tour I wasn’t as confident with my picks and was only in 3 games, losing $37 as two of my players missed the cut and by best player was James Morrison who finished T-13th.

Picks for the Valero Texas Open
I labored with these picks, first the leading players are Matt Kuchar at $11,500, Brooks Koepka at $10,900, Charley Hoffman at $10,700, Jimmy Walker at $10,500, Ryan Moore at $10,200, Branden Grace at $10,000, Brendan Steele at $9,900 and Patrick Reed at $9,700. Of that group I only liked Kuchar and Moore. I wanted to pick both, but it was really hard to find under $7,000. Now there are around 70 players under $6,900 but of all those I had it narrowed down to J.T. Poston at $6,900 and Mackenzie Hughes at $6,400, but none of them had played in the event. Of those that won since the tournament was played at TPC San Antonio in 2010, only Adam Scott in 2010, Brendan Steele in 2011 and Ben Curtis in 2012 won the event with no prior knowledge of the course. Of the four winners since 2013, only Steven Bowditch didn’t have a top-ten on TPC San Antonio before their win. So to do well in this event, you have to had prior knowledge of the course. Of the two that I liked under $7,000 both Poston and Mackenzie had never played before so I was left with the feeling that I had to pick a lot of players in the $7,000 to $7,500 range. So with that it became impossible to absorb the salaries of both Kuchar and Moore, so Ryan at $10,400 was my first pick. After that I picked Kevin Chappell at $9,400 based on his T-7th at the Masters, along with making the cut in 7 of his last 8 events and he was T-4th last year and runner-up in 2011. One key in my picks is the everlasting hope of having all six of my guys make the cut this week. After that my next choice was Harold Varner III at $7,800, he has made the cut in his last four events and was T-9th last year in San Antonio. Next was Luke List at $7,600 he may of missed the cut at Hilton Head, but did shot 67 in the 2nd round and was T-3rd at the Shell Houston Open. Also liked the fact that he has played and made the cut twice in San Antonio. By next two picks were my first picks after taking Moore, I really like Sung Kang at $7,400, he was T-11th at Hilton Head last week and runner-up in Houston three weeks ago. Also liked that he was T-12th in Phoenix, another TPC course and even though he missed the cut twice in San Antonio was T-42nd last year with rounds of 71-67-76-72 so maybe he has a better understanding of the course. Last but probably by best pick is Daniel Summerhays at $7,000. He has played in six Opens at TPC San Antonio and in his last four finished T-13th last year, T-4th in ’15, T-2nd in ’14 and T-7th in ’13 so he shows that he can play well in this event. Other than Charley Hoffman, who has the best record of anyone playing in this event I didn’t take Hoffman because he has been up and down all year, missing seven cut in 14 starts but manly because it bothers me that after shooting a first round 65 at the Masters he then shot 75-72-78 to finish T-22nd and at Hilton Head had rounds of 73-73 to miss the cut. So here are my picks:
Ryan Moore at $10,400
Kevin Chappell at $9,400
Harold Varner III at $7,800
Sung Kang at $7,400
Luke List at $7,600
Daniel Summerhays at $7,000

My picks for the Shenzhen International
Hard event to pick, the event has only been played twice and the field doesn’t have many marquee names. On top of the list is Bubba Watson at $11,600 and frankly he needed to be under $7,000 for me to take a chance on him. He has played terrible this year and I see him at best just making the cut. Next was Tommy Fleetwood at $11,500, Ross Fisher at $11,300 and Peter Uihlein at $10,500. I like Uihlein, he was T-4th in this event in 2015 and has been steady all year. Next was Alexander Levy at $9,500, he was T-4th last year in China and has been steady all year including a 4th place finish in Malaysia. Next is Pablo Larrazabal at $8,200 and to be frank he was my last pick. I was left with $8,700 and he was the only player in that group other than Paul Dunne that has had a good 2017. Was afraid of Dunne mostly because of him losing in the playoff last week so Larrazabal fit the bill for a player that could make the cut. Next up is James Morrison at $7,400, in his last four European Tour events has finished in the top-13 and if you count his 13th place finish in his first start of the year at the BMW South African Open he has finished in the top-13 in five of seven starts. Next is Scott Hend at $7,300 who is more of a Asian Tour guy than a European Tour player. Hend, who is Australian has nine wins in Asia and plays well in that part of the world so he was an easy pick along with the fact that he was T-4th last year and T-15th in 2015 playing this event. Last is the most off the wall pick of the season, Carlos Pigem at $6,900. Frankly I never heard of Pigem, a 26 year-old Spaniard playing for the fourth straight year on the European Tour. He is playing in China for the first time but what caught my interest is that he finished T-8th in Morocco last week and was T-5th in India. He also finished T-14th in Hong Kong back in November and was T-4th at the Alfred Dunhill so he has played well and worth a gamble on. Now a fair warning there isn’t any games this week with good payouts other than the $27 game that will only have 256 players, so interest is low and it’s best to play in the double up and the top-9 games.

One warning, since it’s played in China and they are 12 hours ahead of east coast time, the deadline is 6:30 eastern and 3:30 west coast today, so pickem fast.
Peter Uihlein at $10,500
Alexander Levy at $9,500
Pablo Larrazabal at $8,200
James Morrison at $7,400
Scott Hend at $7,300
Carlos Pigem at $6,900

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