Torrey South key fantasy stats

Farmers Insurance Open

January 23rd – 26th, 2020

Torrey Pines South Course

San Diego, CA

Par: 72 / Yardage: 7,765

Purse: $7.5 million

with $1,350,000 to the winner

Defending Champion:
Justin Rose

by Sal Johnson

Founder, Chief Data Officer, GOLFstats

E-mail me at:

This is based on the most important stats for Torrey Pines South Course, based on data from last year’s Farmers Insurance Open, and using data from all the players in the field for with stats from 2020.
Event is played on two courses, so the data are only for the rounds played on the South Course, not the one round data from the North Course
The scoring average of the field on Torrey South Course in 2019 was 71.73 making it the 18th hardest course on the PGA Tour. That is the first time that the South Course played under par since 2001 when it played to an average of 71.82. Days after that event, bulldozers came in and the course was completely renovated for the 2008 U.S. Open by Rees Jones. So why did the course play so easily last year? Weather, it couldn’t be better, warm all four days with wind under 10 mph each day. With that Justin Rose was able to shot 21 under par, the lowest winning score since Tiger Woods shot 22 under in 1999. Of course wind is always a factor, in 2018 with low temperatures the first three days and winds gusting up to 25 mph the scoring average was 72.81 the 8th hardest course for the year. In 2017 it was windy each day and the average was 72.77 making it the 14th hardest course on the PGA Tour. It was almost 2 shots easier than in 2016 when it was the 2nd hardest course on tour with a 74.50. In that year they had high winds so severe that they had to finish the round on Monday, so that is the reason for the change. 73.066 has been the average of the south course since 2015 but the overall tournament average has been 72.27. That’s because one round is played on the North Course which in past years has been a layup but the course had some changes done to it. Last year the north course played to a 69.84 average which was down, again because of the great weather conditions. Yes, the course was changed in 2016 which has made it a shot tougher, but the course has historically been about two shots easier.
Our course key is based on the South Course which underwent another renovation since it was last played. There have been numerous subtle changes on the south course but the most striking alterations were made to the 4th, 9th, 10th, 15th, and 17th holes. Tees were moved to make it harder to drive in the fairway and new bunkers were added to make players think more about a shot.  On top of that 67 yards have been added to the total yardage of the course bringing it up to 7,765 yards long one of the longest courses on the PGA Tour.
Still, with the course lying on a bluff over the Pacific Ocean mother nature always plays, it’s part with possible fog this time of year, rain and wind. For this year temperatures will be mild in the mid-60s each day and for the first three days, winds will be under 6 mph.
On Sunday the winds will creep up to 10 mph, but this won’t be a problem for the pros so expect good scoring.

In looking at the stats for Torrey South last year, driving is essential. Last year it ranked 32nd on the PGA Tour in driving distance but 1st in driving accuracy. This stat has always been important, it also ranked 1st in 2018 and since 2014 it hasn’t ranked over 9th in accuracy. So you think that you have to drive it straight to play well on the South Course? Not really, in looking at all the champions of the Farmers going back to 1997, only three were in the top-ten in driving accuracy. Phil Mickelson was T-7th in 2000, Ben Crane was T-8th in 2010 and Justin Rose was T-8th in 2019. But in looking at the driving distance it’s a different story. Of the 21 winners since 1999, 13 of them were in the top-11 as last year’s winner Justin Rose was 11th. So driving is important, the combination of hitting it far and straight.
Another vital stat is proximity to the hole, both for those that hit the fairway. Last year the field hit it an average of 36 feet, 1 inch to the hole making it the 19th hardest on tour. As for rough proximity, the course was 7th hardest with the field hitting it an average of 47′ 5 inches. So with hitting into the fairway and hitting it far, our second important stat is Strokes Gained Approach-the-Green. Last year’s winner Justin Rose was 5th in this stat as he was T-2nd in greens hit. Rose is only the second winner in the last eight years in the top-ten in greens hit joining Jason Day in 2015 who was T-8th in greens hit.
Our third category is putting inside 10 feet. Several factors have made Torrey Pines the hardest greens to make putts inside 10 feet for the third year in a row. The main reason that this stat is so extreme is the fact that the greens are Poa Annua and since it’s close to the ocean, the greens are hard to judge and tend to get bumpy, especially late in the afternoon. Last year Torrey Pines South was the the4th hardest in making putts inside 10 feet. If you look historically this is the norm, in 2018 it was 5th hardest and it was the hardest in 2016 and ’17 Last year Rose was T-39th in that stat making 46 of 53 putts. But in 2018 Jason Day shined in this stat ranking 1st in the field making 49 of 51 tries for the week.
Our last category is scrambling manly because of its history in which lots of greens are missed, and Torrey is very tough to get it up and down. Last year it was the 15th hardest but in previous years in 2018 it was 19th but in 2017 it was the 5th hardest, the year before it was 2nd and over the course of the previous six years, the course had been in the top-ten in this stat every year. As for winner Justin Rose, he was 58th in this stat on the 16 greens he missed he got up and down 9 times.

So here are our four choices for the most critical stats from players to do well at Torrey Pines South:

*Strokes gained Tee-to-Green: It’s a combination of hitting it straight and hitting it far. Since Torrey is so long, you have to hit the driver off of most tees. But the fairways are narrow, and the rough is hard if you get into it.

*Strokes Gained Approach-the-Green: It’s a combination of hitting the green from either the fairway or the rough.

*Putting inside 10 feet: This gauges how many putts a player makes inside ten feet. With Torrey having Poa Annua greens making all of these putts is essential and a challenge for players.

*Scrambling: The South Course is hard in this stat before 2018 it was historically very high in this stat as it was in the top-ten on tour between 2011 and 2017. But in 2018 it ranked 19th and last year it was 15th.

138 of the 152 players from this year’s field with stats from this year (note Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Jon Rahm don’t have official stats for 2020:

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

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