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Thursday 29th Jun 2017

Though my squad did not finish in the money this past week at the Tavelers, I feel really good about the approach taken, looking more carefully at the length of the course and holes, and exploiting picks, at least to start, whose game seems more suited to the course.

Of course, this seems a logical step, but it took awhile to sink in as I always just assume all these guys are good at every aspect of the game (remember, I have only been playing seriously, as an adult, for a couple of years), but grabbing Paul Casey (great from 175-200 out) and Daniel Berger (great inside 100 and among the best on the green), my guys finished just seven points off the money with Jhonattan Vegas being the only player I had who didn't make the cut. The irony there being Vegas, percentage-wise, was the best at hitting the green from the 175-200 distance.

This week it is to TPC Potomac at Avenal Farm for the tour, and this time I looked more at average 300-yard drives percentage, plucking some of the best at that for the 7107 yard challenge.

Remember that you can match up against me at the DraftKings Weekly Hybrid PGA.

Justin Thomas ($10.900): Thomas ranked ninth overall in drive distance with a 306.2 yard average over 70 tee shots. Add in that Thomas is 8-for-12 making the cut, averaging 73.5 points per week, and I feel good about this pick.

Tony Finau ($9100): Finau, whom I selected last week and who delivered, ranks tenth, just below Thomas at 306.1 yards over an impressive 128 hits off the box, and has made 12-of-15 cuts, averaging 71.7 points per contest.

Brendan Steele ($8900): Steele is averaging 298.6 yards per drive over 104 hits and is a wickedly consistent 13-for-13 making cuts this season, averaging 75.7 points per week.

Ryan Brehm ($7200): Brehm ranks fifth overall in driving length, going 308.3 yards over 114 shots. He's made ten of twelve cuts this season.

Luke List ($6900): At 311.3 yards per drive (over 144 tee shots), List trails only Dustin Johnson as the longest hitter on the tour thus far this year. He's 9-of-17 playing all weekend and makes an interesting low-end test of the distance factor.

Sung Kang ($6800): Kang tied for sixth at the WEB.com tour played at Avenal Farm four years back, and he has six top-25 finishes since playing the Waste Management contest, making 13 of 18 cuts.

Do remember to keep fantasy open and regulated and fair for all by writing your local lawmakers and tell them of your love of playing and desire to keep on playing. Visit the FSTA site for more information (and thanks).

Feel free to comment with your thoughts, and remember you can also hit me up @lawrmichaels.

Cycle III, Week III of Tout Daily continues with the Touts getting another chance to make the Tourney finals at DraftKings. Leading the pack are Derek Carty, followed by Vlad Sedler, and in third Jeff Boggis.

You can review the standings right here and see the Touts weekly picks every Friday morning along with a wrap-up on Saturday at the Tout Wars site. I also recap and preview the standings right here every Wednesday in my Fout Wars column.

Jimmy Nelson ($8500): Despite a price-tag increase of $1700 from last week, Nelson has been so solid, coming off a 10-whiff complete game shutout against the Padres. The Braves are tougher, but young, and another team Nelson can exploit.

Steven Souza ($4200): Souza has been beyond steady, averaging 8.8 points per game, and going up against Ubaldo Jimenez and his 6.25 ERA and 1.50 WHIP with 14 homers allowed over 63.3 frames.

Don't forget, you can hit me up @lawrmichaels and also feel free to comment, flatter, cajole, ridicule, bewitch, bother, and bewilder in the comments section below. 

The Open was so potentially exciting, and I have to register unhappiness in that I made the mistake of selecting Phil Mickelson, whom I knew at the time might miss the tournament due to the pending graduation of his daughter. On Wednesday night, I wrote my piece on the tourney, and even changed the pick to Bubba Watson. While this would not make a difference in my finish, because I had my DraftKings window open, I guess I missed hitting the final submit button.

OK, my mistake, but the following morning I looked to double-check, and since the tourney had 7 AM tee times, that would be fine. But it was 5 AM in California, meaning it was too late.

This is not just pointed towards DK, but in general, cut-offs and FAAB deadlines all seem to be predicated on ET, which might be logical, but imagine you want to go to a show Sunday night in say, Los Angeles. And, the main act hits the stage at 9 PM. Are you going to check your phone, or are you going to want to watch AC/DC or U2 hit the stage?

The East Coast might stay up later than us, but they close us down a lot earlier!

So, back to the Travelers (and you might note this year, there is a 2017 behind the title), and that means I have been covering this stuff for over a year, trying to get the hang. That I will continue, and actually Bubba was among my picks last year, along with Brooks Koepka and Jamie Lovemark, to name a couple more.

So, who do I like at TPC River Highlands? Well, Highlands is a shorter course so the tactician should be rewarded, and after my talk with Pat Mayo last week, I focused first on the best players to get to the green from 175-200 yards out. Will that point to something worth knowing? Let's see.

Remember that you can match up against me at the DraftKings Weekly Hybrid PGA.

Paul Casey ($9700): After 62 rounds, Casey's efficiency to the green is 84 hits out of 134 holes, good for about 63% success. Casey has also made 11 of 12 cuts.

Marc Leishman ($9400): Sentimental holdover from last year. But Leishman had a decent showing at the Open and is good for 66.2 points per contest with 12 cuts made in 14 tries.

Tony Finau ($8700): Finau ranks second on greens made, bagging an awesome 102 out of 156 for a 65.38% rating with the largest sample size. Finau has made 11 of 14 cuts.

Zach Johnson ($8500): Johnson has been playing well, and I need a couple of tests against the percentage theory, but 11  of 14 cuts and a decent open finish (two over). He did struggle hitting the greens, but a shorter venue may suit him. Gotta try stuff to learn stuff, right? 

Emiliano Grillo ($7200): Grillo has made 11 of 13 cuts and is actually among the leaders on the tour at getting the ball into the cup from 200 or less. We'll see?

Jhonattan Vegas ($6400): Funny that the low-priced spread is also the most deadly at hitting the green from that 175-200 yard span, but Vegas has bagged 67.23%, making 80 of 119 tries. 

Do remember to keep fantasy open and regulated and fair for all by writing your local lawmakers and tell them of your love of playing and desire to keep on playing. Visit the FSTA site for more information (and thanks).

Feel free to comment with your thoughts, and remember you can also hit me up @lawrmichaels.

We have a six-game slate for Thursday night on DraftKings. Luis Severino ($12,300) and Alex Wood ($9,100) are the two best pitchers on the slate. If you need to save money off of Severino, Jaime Garcia ($7,500) is a high-risk option.

Loading up on Indians against the inconsistent lefty Wade Miley is an advisable option. Edwin Encarnacion ($5,400) and Jose Ramirez ($5,500) lead the group. Two other interesting options are Nelson Cruz ($4,500), who appears to be underpriced and is facing a lefty, and the Braves' Johan Camargo ($3,200), who has been cheap and hot since getting steady work.

Cycle III, Week II of Tout Daily continues with the Touts getting another chance to make the Tourney finals at DraftKings. Leading the pack are Todd Zola and Derek Carty a week into the festivities with Lenny Melnick grabbing the most recent pair of golden tickets.

You can follow the Tout Daily standings right here and see the Touts weekly picks every Friday morning along with a wrap-up on Saturday at the Tout Wars site. I also recap and preview the standings right here every Wednesday in my Fout Wars column.

Joe Biagini ($6900): Coming off a pair of pretty good starts over which he went seven innings each time, the Jays righty faces a White Sox team that is in the middle of the pack with respect to efficiency against right-handers. The Sox have some weapons, but I am guessing Biagini can pull off a quality start.

Jose Ramirez ($4000): Switch-hitting Ramirez, who is under-valued, faces Nik Turley, a lefty who has made one start, allowing eight hits and four runs over four innings. 

Don't forget, you can hit me up @lawrmichaels and also feel free to comment, flatter, cajole, ridicule, bewitch, bother, and bewilder in the comments section below. 

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