Boy, this Fantasy Golf is as fun, strange, difficult, and addicting as every other form of Fantasy game.
My first real foray was last week with the Waste Management Phoenix Open, where I based my picks largely upon the ability to make the tournament cut.
Things were indeed moving forward to at least finish in the money as I had James Hahn, Phil Mickelson, Billy Horschel, and Charles Howe III. They all did indeed play the final weekend, and Hahn was atop the leaderboard overnight, but come Sunday, they all faded and my team dropped from around 12,000 to 38,000 and that was that.
The learning so far is that for sure, this is a game about counting stats first, thus the hunch to get players who make the cut is certainly correct. Players cannot earn points without playing, and the truth is those players who do wind up with weekend tee times did so by keeping their score sub-par, and again, that means point generation.
However, to really make a mark and finish among the top, finding the winner/top finishers is the key, and that might prove a bit more daunting to identify as I stumble through this trial and error.
The ATT Pro-Am is up this week, the Tourney that used to be the Crosby, and was originally played at the lovely Old Brockway Course in Kings Beach (where I have played a couple of times).
Before I reveal my choices, remember we have a great deal with our pals at DraftKings. If you do not play DFS, do hit the link below for details.
So, once again, I am looking at cut makers as I become more familiar with the players on the tour, and their skill set. Obviously, there are other factors to review--skill on the course, recent play, history on the tour--but I am trying to start simple, milking the cut theory and easing in gently to see what I can see as a result.
As for picks, and logic:
Bubba Watson ($10,900): What can I say, I just like Bubba. He can crush the ball, and I am not so sure that is an advantage in Monterey, where the courses might be a bit more subtle, but I shall find out. In the mean time, it is fun to root for a guy I like, and Watson did finish seven under in Phoenix and has made the cut every time this year.
Phil Mickelson ($10,300): I liked Phil last week, and he made me worry Thursday before picking it up, playing a red-hot Saturday round. I am hoping he is on a roll. No question, the guy can play.
K.C. Choi ($7900): I tried to work on the Fantasy Baseball premise of gambling more towards the middle, rather than scrubs and stars, so Choi as my next pick fits right in. K.C. finished five under in Phoenix and is four-for-four making cuts this season.
Si Woo Kim ($7300): Another pretty consistent guy, Kim struggled at the end at Torrey Pines, and was off last week. Still, he has made the cut seven of nine times and is generally good for around 68 points. If all my guys can deliver that, well, woo hoo.
Jason Gore ($7100): Seven-for-seven in making the cut this season. Good enough for me at this point.
Brent Stegmaier ($6400): Again, seven-for-nine in finishes this year. I confess, I am sort of picking Stegmaier like I would be taking Alex Gordon as a third outfielder in a fantasy draft. We shall see where it goes.
So, as we do, please let me know your thoughts/suggestions/ideas/commiserations @lawrmichaels.