Expert Picks: PGA Championship

Josh Culp
Rotoworld
Fantasy selections for the 101st PGA Championship hosted at Bethpage State Park's Black Course. (Getty Images)

Expert Picks: PGA Championship

Fantasy selections for the 101st PGA Championship hosted at Bethpage State Park's Black Course. (Getty Images)

"Welcome to Playing the Tips! 

Each week this will be the one-stop resource to soak in all the picks from our fantasy staffers at Rotoworld.com. 

Page 1 is going to look at Daily Fantasy Sports picks (FanDuel, Yahoo, and DraftKings).

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Page 2 will have a look at One-and-Done options as well as PGATOUR.com's fantasy game. 
 

Daily Fantasy Sports [DFS]

I will be giving out selections for one team for each DFS site, per week. 

These lineups will be entered into a large-entry Guaranteed Prize Pool. That means we need to take a risk or two, in order to separate ourselves from the field. 

The idea is to provide you a list of names to consider. I would not recommend copying these teams, golfer for golfer. Duplicate teams are no fun and don't help anyone. 

FanDuel Picks:

Gary Woodland (9,900): Finished top 10 in his last appearance at Bethpage and loves the course layout in terms of it setting up well for his shot shape. 

Sergio Garcia (9,700): Has top 10s in all three trips to Bethpage but hasn't played it since 2012. Does his game still fit the lengthy layout? I'm willing to find out for this price. 

Bubba Watson (9,700): Finished top 20 in all three visits to Bethpage. 

Byeong Hun An (8,600): One of the best ball-strikers on TOUR but he arrives off an injury WD in his latest start. That should keep him low owned which I need since the rest of my lineups is full of chalk. 

Paul Casey (10,000): The Englishman has been boom or bust over his last five starts. His irons have been the catalyst as he's gained 4.6+ strokes on approach in three of his last five starts and all of those weeks ended in a top-5 finish. 

Justin Rose (11,500): Has had some time to refresh his chemistry with Fooch ahead of the season's second major. The Englishman doesn't mind the cold so he should be ready for the tes this week where the forecast calls for high-50s to mid-60s for most of the week. 

 

DraftKings Picks -- @futureoffantasy

Paul Casey (8300): If you're starting with a balanced approach, Casey is an easy man to pop in. He loves playing on Northern grasses and he's a ball-striking machine. 

Adam Scott (8,100): Remains one of the steadiest putters since the rule changes to allow the flagstick to stay in. Always one of the best from tee-to-green. 

Gary Woodland (7,700): On the record for saying this course is perfect for the shot shapes he hits off the tee. Has the length to feast on the soft conditions. 

Hideki Matsuyama (8,500): With elevated greens, good iron play should be rewarded. There are loads of bunkers guarding all the greens here but I'd expect Matsuyama to avoid most of them with his elite approach play. 

Patrick Cantlay (8,200): Keeping it balanced, and keeping it chalky. The UCLA product has gained 6+ strokes tee-to-green in 5 of his last 7 measured events. 

Bryson DeChambeau (8,900): Could have gone Jason Day here but I don't trust his back in cold morning temps. Instead, I'll take a lower-owned Bryson. Two of his wins last year came at courses that graded out as a correlation to Bethpage for me (TPC Boston and Muirfield Village). He also won at Ridgewood, another A.W. Tillinghast design. 

 

DraftKings Picks -- @DaveTindallGolf

Brooks Koepka ($10,400) – You don’t even engage the brain for longer than half-a-second when this guy is this price in a major. Course looks perfect for him.

Rickie Fowler ($9,300) – Fowler has current form, course form, majors form. Heck, even the move to May plays into his hands given that he loves this month. I expect him to be challenging on Sunday.

Tony Finau ($8,800) – Top tens in four of his last five majors. Well, they will keep playing them on long courses with grass types he likes.

Sergio Garcia ($7,900) – Ball-strikers thrive at Bethpage and Sergio has turned the theory to reality every time he’s turned up here.

Aaron Wise ($7,100) – Has the right profile – big-hitting American – to thrive here and now has the extra belief too after top 20 at Augusta National.

Julian Suri ($6,400) – Some great form on the European Tour since returning from injury and bargain salary creates lots of options elsewhere.

Total salary: $49,900

On the cusp: Jon Rahm ($9,500), Xander Schauffele ($9,100), Hideki Matsuyama ($8,500), Henrik Stenson ($7,900), Ian Poulter ($7,600), Corey Conners ($7,200)

 

DraftKings Picks -- @MattCooperGolf

Brooks Koepka ($10,400)  Nine top tens in his last 18 starts in the major championships, seven of them top fives and three wins. His game is good, his major brain superb and his length an asset this week.

Jon Rahm ($9,500)  Failed to make a top 20 in his first six starts in major championships, but has turned that around in style with three top tens in his last five appearances.

Xander Schauffele ($9,100) – Four top sixes in his eight major championship starts and two of them are seconds. They’ve both come in his last three starts too.

Lucas Bjerregaard ($7,000) – The Dane hits the ball a mile (although he reported to the European Tour twitter account that even he hit 5-wood in four par-4s in practice) and now has the boost of having contended a WGC event (beating Tiger along the way).

Keith Mitchell ($7,300) – A winner this season (the Honda Classic), in form (a top ten at Quail Hollow) and he hits the ball a long way. Great value.

Julian Suri ($6,600) – The American finished top 20 in this event last August and after a winter rehabilitating he has finished second, fourth and 20th in three starts.

Total salary: $49,700

On the cusp: Dustin Johnson ($11,100), Jason Day ($9,000), Adam Scott ($8,100), Sergio Garcia ($7,900), Gary Woodland ($7,700), Billy Horschel ($7,400)

 

Yahoo Picks: 

Dustin Johnson (47): The best golfer in the world over the last year and he deserves more than one major to his name. 

Rory McIlroy (49): Going with the top-heavy approach of DJ-Rory as the anchors. There are plenty of viable value plays from here. 

Aaron Wise (23): The youngster has all the tools to contend on the big stage and he's rounded into form with two top 20s in his last three starts. Both on big-hitter courses. 

Jason Kokrak (25): Everyone is waiting for his torrid run to end but it just keeps going. The Ohio man enters with eight top 20s over his last 11 starts and now heads to a course where he finished top 10 in his lone appearance (2016 Barclays). 

Adam Scott (33): Going with just one putter this week (a broomstick). Despite all the putter experiments he enters with positive strokes gained putting in all six measured starts since the rules changed to allow the flagstick to remain in. 

Lucas Glover (23): Won at Bethpage in 2009 under soaked conditions. Will see another soft course this week and he arrives with red-hot season form. 

 

Fantasy Race to Dubai -- @DaveTindallGolf: 

Last week: Into that top thousand thanks to some fine play by my virtually all-English team at Hillside.

Position: 826th

Xander Schauffele (captain): Runner-up in two of the last three majors and yet low ownership as he’s not a household-name American. I’ll take the gamble and make him skipper.

Jon RahmHits it long and straight (2nd SG: Off-The-Tee) so Bethpage looks a great fit and now working out what’s needed to thrive in majors.

Tony FinauA big-hitting American with a great record in the majors and under the radar in this format. Yes please.

Rory McIlroyAvailable in this game at last. A long, soft golf course usually lights up Rory’s eyes and already has a top ten in a major here.

Sergio GarciaHas cracked the top ten in all three of his starts at Bethpage Black and comes in off a fourth at Quail Hollow last time.

Justin RoseHasn’t played great here before it has to be said. But Rose was third at Quail Hollow on his last start and he's the World No. 2 so there’s that.

 

Fantasy Race to Dubai -- @MattCooperGolf: 

Last week: Eddie Pepperell wore the armband with style, but having no Matt Wallace on the roster hurt me and I’ve slipped further back then I think I’ve been in about three years!

Position: 3,004th

Xander Schauffele (captain): In addition to the major championship log book mentioned above, I like his fondness for elite field events: victories in the 2017 Tour Championship, 2018 WGC HSBC Champions and 2019 Tournament of Champions.

Rory McIlroyAdmittedly my rules in this game have largely led me nowhere this season, but I’m going to stick with one that has only just become possible again – when Rory is available, play him.

Paul CaseyI was initially keen on Tommy Fleetwood, but he’s had all the fuss of last week’s hosting duties, plus he played it with a virus. Easy to see him being tired. Instead will take the long carrying drives of his fellow Englishman.

Jon RahmNot only has the Spaniard transformed his major performances, he is also in excellent form. In fact, he has finished T12 or better in ten of his last 12 starts.

Sergio GarciaHis Bethpage record is strong: T4 and T10 in the U.S. Open, T3 in The Barclays. Looked good in finishing second with Tommy Fleetwood in the Zurich Classic and T4 on his own in the Wells Fargo Championship.

Francesco MolinariHis recent success was prompted by an error of approach in last year’s Players Championship and I’m taking him to respond to the Masters in a similar vein. Seeking a seventh top 25 on the bounce in majors.

One-and-Done

Each week I will think out loud about my process in determining my One-and-Done selection. If you are new to the One-and-Done format, it is like an NFL survivor league. You pick one golfer per week, but you can't use them again all year. 

To start things off we will have a look at weighted tournament history over since the 2002 US Open: 

Phil Mickelson (Two RUNNER-UP, 38th and 13th)
Ryan Moore (MC, 10th, 24th, 7th)
Jason Day (24th, 4th)
Bubba Watson (18th, 10th, 13th)
Patrick Reed (WIN)
Rickie Fowler (MC, 24th, 7th)
Emiliano Grillo (RUNNER-UP)
Dustin Johnson (40th, 3rd, 18th)
Adam Scott (MC, 36th, 62nd, 4th)
Gary Woodland (47th, 4th)
Rory McIlroy (10th, 24th, 31st)
Jason Kokrak (7th)
Louis Oosthuizen (5th, 18th)
Ryan Palmer (24th, 13th)
Jordan Spieth (10th)
 

After history, we can look at baseline performance over the last year. This will give us a good feel for who should pop regardless of past course results: 

Dustin Johnson
Justin Rose
Tiger Woods
Rory McIlroy
Brooks Koepka
Rickie Fowler
Bryson DeChambeau
Jason Day
Patrick Cantlay
Tony Finau
Jon Rahm
Webb Simpson
Tommy Fleetwood
Xander Schauffele
Francesco Molinari

Looking for an overlap list we see a few names pop up: Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, and Jason Day.

You may be wondering where Sergio or Tiger are on the history list. What gives? I use time-weighting on the history results and neither of them of them played in 2016 which is when the results start getting a much bigger boost. If we look at raw history then the top 3 are Phil, Tiger, and Sergio. I wouldn't talk anyone out of Tiger or Sergio if that is who draws their eye. 

Back to my decision. I will stick with the time-weighted process and choose from the overlap list. I've already used DJ, Rory, and Day so Rickie Fowler is my man this week. 

 

PGA TOUR Fantasy Golf presented by SERVPRO

Josh Culp 

“@FutureOfFantasy”

Last Week Rank: 12374
Season Rank: 282

Starters: 

Tiger Woods
Xander Schauffele
Brooks Koepka
Jason Day

Bench: 

Patrick Cantlay
Tony Finau

Mo Yoshimoto 

“@BearsGolf3423” 

Last Week: 829
Season Rank: 4604

Starters:

Brooks Koepka
Rory McIlroy
Jon Rahm
Rickie Fowler

 

Bench:

Dustin Johnson
Tiger Woods

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