Welcome to the 2019 Masters Fantasy Golf Picks and Pro-Tip
Masters Sweat Promotion
Congrats to our 15 subscribers and winners of our first PGA DFS SWEAT promotion for The Masters. We’ll be entering $3000 of our money in the Millionaire Maker with our CEO Jeremy Stein and bringing our subscribers along for the freeroll, splitting 50 percent of any profits with the group above. Make sure to hop into our slack channel where we’ll be talking about lineup construction and sweating our teams over the weekend.
News and Notes
The Masters is, of course, played at Augusta National. Augusta National is a Par 72 that stretches nearly 7500 yards and is the 18th longest course on tour in par adjusted distance. The course played as the 7th toughest on tour last year relative to par and yielded just the 9th most fantasy points in the environment. The majority of the fantasy scoring (roughly 50 percent) occurs on the four Par 5s and the short Par 4 3rd hole Flowering Peach, with the last two Par 5s (Azalea and Firethorn) also providing a crucial link to a birdie streak opportunity. Fantasy scoring is always important but these holes will be particularly important for Showdown and Weekend golf formats to separate your rosters. More on course fit and course history below.
With PGA TOUR injury reporting poor we’re left to speculate on potential injuries including Jason Day (back) and Justin Thomas (wrist) both of whom got documented treatment for their injuries. Si Woo Kim also seemed to be bothered during his R4 on Sunday at the Valero Texas Open. Gary Woodland tweaked his back last week and is a new report (11am 4/10).
But back to the big guns.
Jason Day finished 8th at The Players following his WD before missing the cut at the Valspar and being eliminated from group play at WGC Match Play. Justin Thomas injured his wrist at the Honda Classic and immediately saw a decline in his SG Approach and OTT play the remainder of that event and at The Players Championship before exiting early at WGC Match Play. Those are bad signs. The one positive was that he wasn’t playing with wrist tape at Match Play and likely wouldn’t have set himself up for such a potentially long event if he wasn’t comfortable playing through whatever is bothering him. My take: both players are still in my player pool for MME but I’ll manage ownership accordingly, and don’t see the need to take on the risk in cash games.
Going for the Green The Masters Fantasy Golf Picks and Preview
The Masters Course Fit
I wrote a detailed course fit breakdown as part of my 2019 Masters Preview and the takeaways are summarized in the table above. Strokes gained off the tee has shown the strongest correlation with finishing position at Augusta since the 2010 tournament using leading PGATOUR strokes gained stats for that year. Surprisingly, Strokes Gained Off the Tee even outpaced Strokes Gained Approach as far as its correlation, and despite its notoriety for having challenging green surfaces putting and around the green play had lower levels of impact.
Savvy fantasy golfers should take into account course fit in addition to course history when making adjustments to our fantasy golf projection baselines this week.
Course History at The Masters
Our partners at DataGolf wrote a fantasy betting preview for Pinnacle Sports this week which took a deep dive into course history at Augusta. I’d recommend giving it a thorough read but a brief summary of how I interpreted their conclusions is: