TPC Scottsdale Fantasy Golf Picks

Waste Management Phoenix Open

January 30th – February 2nd, 2020

TPC Scottsdale

Scottsdale, AZ

Par: 71 / Yardage: 7,261

Purse: $7.3 million

with $1,314,000 to the winner

Defending Champion:
Rickie Fowler

by Sal Johnson

Founder, Chief Data Officer, GOLFstats

E-mail me at:

This is based on the most important stats for TPC Scottsdale, based on data from last year’s Waste Management Phoenix Open, and using data from all the players in the field for with stats from 2020.

The scoring average of the field on TPC Scottsdale last year was 70.51, so with par being 71, that means the average score was a bit more than a half of a stroke under par, making TPC Scottsdale T-25th hardest course to score on in 2019.

In looking at the stats for TPC Scottsdale last year, driving and greens hit are essential. With fast fairways, the course ranked 40th in driving distance and 10th in driving accuracy. Going a step further of the ten TPC courses that were used on the PGA Tour in 2019, the only TPC course harder to get it into the fairway was TPC San Antonio. In our ranking we consider hitting greens our most important stat, last year the course ranked 22nd in greens in regulation, but over the course of the last eleven years, all of the winners have been in the top-13 in greens hit, taking it a step further of those same champions nine of them finished in the top-four so you can see the importance of hitting greens in winning this championship. Last year’s winner Rickie Fowler was the exception to the rule, he ranked T-3rd in driving distance, 11th in Driving accuracy and T-13th in Greens in Regulation. Now we can give Fowler a pass when you consider the poor weather in the final round with heavy rain during most of his round which drove the final-round scoring average to 71.58 and led Fowler to shot 74, the highest final round by a winner on the PGA Tour since Steven Bowditch’s 74 in winning the 2014 Valero Texas Open. In the final round in Phoenix, Fowler hit 11 greens which were the reason for his high ranking. With the bad weather and all, Fowler ranked 19th in Strokes Gained Tee-to-Green, the highest of the last couple of winners. Going back a year to Gary Woodland in 2018 he was 2nd in Strokes Gained Tee-to-Green. In 2017 winner Hideki was 18th in driving distance, T-6th in driving accuracy and T-2nd in greens in regulation, finishing 1st in Strokes Gained Tee-to-Green. The year before 2016, Matsuyama also won and was 35th in driving distance, T-44th in driving accuracy and 1st in greens hit. This added up to 1st in Strokes Gained Tee-to-Green so you can see the importance in this stat since the last three of the four winners have been either 1st or 2nd.
So our first category is Strokes Gained tee-to-green which is crucial for not only keeping the ball in the fairways but hitting greens and getting it close to the hole. Again we have to forget about last year’s stats because of the poor playing conditions during the final round, but all the rest of the years makes the case.
Our second category is proximity to the hole, which is the distance it the hole from shots hit from the fairway. Again forget the fact that Rickie Fowler won and was 46th in this stat last year. In 2018 the champion Gary Woodland was 13th. In 2017 the winner Matsuyama was 2nd his average shot finishing 31 feet, 1 inch away. When he won in 2016 he was 8th his average shot finishing 35 feet, 10 inches away.
After that our third important category is Par Breakers because making eagles and birdies are important. Last year Rickie Fowler was the best in the field making an eagle and 23 birdies, in 2018 Gary Woodland was the best in the field as he made 1 eagle and his 26 birdies were the best of the week. The previous year Matsuyama was 12th in this stat as he had 19 birdies and an eagle.
Our last category is scrambling, and you can see why. Since the course is a shot-makers delight, you can see that if you miss a lot of greens, you better get it up and down to play well. Last year TPC Scottsdale ranked 25th, while last year’s winner Rickie Fowler was T-8th, 2018 winner Gary Woodland was 25th. The previous year Matsuyama was 17th in scrambling.
So you can see that this isn’t a bombers course since accuracy is such a key. Another important thing, most of the time the weather is good, and the only problems stem from freezing mornings in which frost creates delays. But last year Sunday was terrible which is a rarity for the Scottsdale area. But this year things will be different, the forecast is as close to perfect as you can get. Temperatures in the mid to high 70s with very little winds each day which will create very good scoring for the week.

So here are our four choices for the most critical stats from players to do well at TPC Scottsdale:

*Strokes gained tee-to-Greens: Important because it shows how TPC Scottsdale ranked T-21st in this stat, meaning that a combination of driving distance, driving accuracy and greens hit is important

*Proximity to hole: Hitting greens is important, last year TPC Scottsdale ranked 22nd, but in proximity to hole, which tells how close players get to the hole, TPC Scottsdale ranked 5th as the players averaged getting it 39 feet and 6 inches.

*Par Breakers: Desert courses always seem to give up a lot of birdies and eagles, last year TPC Scottsdale ranked 18th in that stat. Of all of the courses the hold a PGA Tour event, TPC Scottsdale is the hardest one to make eagles and birdies on.

*Scrambling: Of the 49 courses on tour in 2019, TPC Scottsdale got it up and down 59.35 of the time, meaning that it ranked 25th. So it’s important for players to make sure to get it up and down on those holes that they miss the greens.

118 of the 132 players from this year’s field with stats from this year:

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

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