Ned Brown has been killing it again in Yahoo!
He doesn’t reveal all of his secrets here but it’s close!
One of the main reasons he’s flying?
Yep, this guy:
Spring Points: 805
Spring Rank: 3,580
Winter Points: 1,768
Winter Rank: 2,587
Season Points: 2,573
Season Rank: 1,427
Well, that escalated quickly.
I looked like a right genius leaving DJ off the board until he made a par to make the cut Saturday morning. He followed that up with 67-67 and T-2. The optimist in me says I’ll use the “extra” start for a win. The pessimist in me keeps yelling “you dumbass” in my ear.
My negligence cost me 2,000 spots in the spring session and almost 700 spots in the season-long race.
It also didn’t help that I only had ONE player play the weekend in Group B as my southern gentlemen weren’t close to contributing.
Kevin Tway and Jon Rahm in Group C were my only redeeming qualities this week yet Pat Perez (T-2) and Brian Harman (WIN) wiped the floor with them.
Some weeks you’re the windshield.
Some weeks you’re the bug.
Remember, Yahoo! is a SCORING GAME ONLY.
Nothing else matters.
The course record is 63 at TPC Sawgrass but it might surprise you to see which guys have posted that score. Check my preview and you’ll understand my point!
This week, the key isn’t par five scoring because, frankly, they’re not that difficult.
I’m looking for guys who can handle the par fours and leave bogeys and others behind. Sergio Garcia made 23 birdies last year but couldn’t avoid the bogey train. Scores can be made and had so I’m leaning on guys who’ll create the most chances.
With the new greens in play for the first time, I’m going to lean on guys who will hit the most of them. They will have the most chances to score.
As we’ve learned over the years, it’s not target golf at TPC Sawgrass but it’s awfully close. The players who can keep their ball out of trouble and through the wind should benefit.
Starts remaining in parentheses
Rory McIlroy (8): Nothing worse than T-12 over the last four years.
Rickie Fowler (6): Since DJ is playing with McIlroy I’ll use Fowler’s early tee time on Thursday as my excuse.
Dustin Johnson: This makes no sense but I’m doing it AGAIN. I have six starts left: Memphis, Erin Hills, Royal Birkdale, Firestone, Quail Hollow and The Barclays.
Adam Scott: I have no problem with steady but how weird is it that he is an afterthought this week?
Branden Grace: If he continues his excellent form he makes for excellent counterprogramming if you need to make up some ground.
Hideki Matsuyama (5): People think he was made for the Masters but I’ll argue the smaller targets here are right up his alley.
Justin Thomas (6): He’s rolled in 41 birdies in eight rounds. The first time shot 65 here he circled 10 birdies. The following year he had eight plus and eagle.
Francesco Molinari (8): Of his 18 rounds, 14 have been par or better including nine in a row. In six tries he has three top 10’s including the last two years.
Paul Casey (8): I’m keeping him in the lineup again this week after closing 70-68 at a difficult Eagle Point last week.
It was very difficult to leave Justin Rose off but with a field this big, it happens.
I only have five starts left on Spieth and I’m not going to burn one on a course where he’s MC the last two years. If I had 10 starts left I would but I shouldn’t be playing if that’s the case. But in THIS format he doesn’t interest me this week. Colonial, Erin Hills, Royal Birkdale, Firestone and East Lake are the plan for now.
Matt Kuchar has posted 25 of his last 30 rounds at par or better and has won here before.
Kevin Chappell has been lit lately and would make an excellent filler for those who need to think outside the box.
Jon Rahm (5): Can’t I just copy-and-paste until he’s out of starts?
Sergio Garcia (7): Vamos. Look up his record here the last 13 years and then add he’s now a major champion.
I’ve often referred to Group C as the Rummage Sale of fantasy golf as there is something in here for any theory or style.
Martin Kaymer will satisfy those who don’t believe in Rahm or think Garcia is aloof after his Masters win.
Brooks Koepka, along with Kaymer, Rahm and Garcia, all tee off around the same time so I’m sticking with los dos Spaniards. Koepka hitting the top 10 this week would be a surprise factor of zero.
Ross Fisher has been on fire lately worldwide and will hit every green.
Jason Dufner is a lovely “long shot” in this format.
Ned Brown returns to drop his knowledge in Yahoo! as he did here last year. Ned is a legend in the gaming world and has cleaned up in Yahoo while most of you were in diapers! He’ll share his thoughts and picks here when he wants!
Spring Points: 833
Spring Rank: 1,465
Winter Points: 1,871
Winter Rank: 140
Season Points: 2,704
Season Rank: 55
Dustin Johnson (5) — Johnson is on a run right now that can be compared to runs that Tiger Woods use to make. He won three straight going into last week and almost made it four. He missed a playoff by a shot when Brian Harman drained a 28-foot birdie putt at the 72nd hole. DJ is currently at 7-1 in London, which in golf odds, is Woods territory when he was in his prime. The one problem with Johnson this week is that his course history here is pretty weak. His best finish in eight starts was last year and that was a T-28. I wouldn’t put money on him at 7-1, but for the Yahoo! game I’ll put him on my bench and have him force me to use him.
Rory McIlroy (8) — It’s a bit tough to know the state of McIlroy’s game because he has taken some time off to get married. His recent course history here is good with a T8 in ’13, a T5 in ’14 and T8 in ’15.
Rickie Fowler, Jason Day
Justin Rose (5) — Almost everyone is going to pencil Jordan Spieth but he’s missed the last two cuts here and I’m down to four starts on him. I’ll use Justin Rose who had a real good shot last time out of winning the Masters.
Hideki Matsuyama (7) — Matsuyama was red hot at the end of ’16 into ’17 and notched a win at the WMPO. He cooled off a bit after that, but he looked good again last time out at the Masters where he tied for 11th. He has finished in the top 25 in all three of his starts here with his best result coming last in a tied for seventh place.
Justin Thomas (4) — I had Thomas for both of his wins in Hawaii and I have tried to use him again this year on courses that he has done well on. Last year he tied for third place here so I’m putting back in the lineup again.
Francesco Molinari (7) — Molinari played great last week and led for a great deal of the tournament. He had a final round of 75 and of course TV didn’t show a lot of him, so I didn’t get a feel of what was going on. In his last two starts here he T-6 in ’14 and T-7 last year. Overall he is playing well and a safe play this week.
Paul Casey, Matt Kuchar, Kevin Chappell, Jordan Spieth
Sergio Garcia (8) — One of my big mistakes of the year was not penciling Garcia in at the Masters, which he proceeded to win. He is a past champion at THE PLAYERS and his recent record here is very good with a T-8 in ’13, a third place in ’14 and a T-2 in ’15.
Jon Rahm (5) — It’s going to a Spanish tandem for a lot of Yahoo! fantasy entries this week. Rahm again was in the hunt for the title last week and I’m convinced he would have been in a playoff if not having to try to eagle the final hole after Harman drained his long birdie putt. He is a first-timer at THE PLAYERS but he is playing so well right now he is worth ignoring that.
Martin Kaymer, Brian Harman, Brooks Koepka, Lee Westwood
Shoot any questions and follow along at @MikeGlasscott and mikeglasscott.com to stay in tune.