JJ Spaun leads the field of 144 as he looks to become the first champion to defend since the move to TPC San Antonio Oaks Course in 2010.
2023 WGC – Valero Texas Open
TPC San Antonio
San Antonio, Texas
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I’d tell you to follow him on Twitter but if you’re here you probably ain’t on Twitter! @RobBoltonGolf just in case!
2023 Qualifiers for PLAYERS, majors
Last chance saloon for those who are dreaming of Pimento Cheese Sandwiches and Peach Ice Cream Sandwiches!
Of the five last winners, four have been first-timers and cashed their ticket to ANGC.
TPC San Antonio is annually ranked in the most difficult courses used on TOUR. It feels like I’m writing this weekly over the last six weeks but it’s true. PGA National, Bay Hill, Innisbrook and TPC San Antonio all rank in the top 12 courses annually on TOUR.
While the city of San Antonio is the longest serving host of a PGA TOUR event, The Oaks Course has only served as host since 2010.
|Host Course||TPC San Antonio (Oaks Course)|
|Yards (per official scorecard):||7,438.|
|Greens:||TifEagle Bermuda over seeded with Poa Trivialis; 6,400 square feet.|
|Rough:||Rye/Fescue just over two inches.|
|Bunkers/Water Hazards/In Play||64/3/3.|
|Architect(s):||Greg Norman (2010).|
|Purse:||$8.9 million; $1.602 winner plus 500 FedExCup points.|
|Defending Champion:||JJ Spaun.|
|Multiple Champion(s) Entered:||None.|
|72 Hole Tournament Record:||264; Corey Conners (-20), 2019.|
|Course Record (last):||62; Trey Mullinax, Round 3, 2018.|
|Oldest Winner:||Charley Hoffman, 39.|
|Youngest Winner:||Jordan Spieth, Corey Conners, 27.|
|Fact of the Week:||There has never been a playoff since the move to The Oaks Course in 2010.|
- Field of 144.
- Top 65 and ties make the cut after two rounds.
- Winner this week, if not already qualified, will take the final spot at the Masters next week.
- Only 11 players qualified for Augusta are in the field this week.
- Only 8 of the top 50 OWGR are entered this week.
2022-2023 Season Winners
|Fortinet Championship||Max Homa|
|Sanderson Farms Championship||Mackenzie Holmes|
|Shriners Children’s Open||Tom Kim|
|ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP||Keegan Bradley|
|CJ CUP at CONGAREE||Rory McIlroy|
|Butterfield Bermuda Championship||Seamus Power|
|Mayakoba Championship||Russell Henley|
|Cadence Bank Houston Open||Tony Finau|
|The RSM Classic||Adam Svensson (first TOUR win)|
|Sentry Tournament of Champions||Jon Rahm|
|Sony Open in Hawaii||Si Woo Kim|
|The AMERICAN EXPRESS||Jon Rahm (2)|
|Farmers Insurance Open||Max Homa (2)|
|AT&T Pebble Beach||Justin Rose|
|WM Phoenix Open||Scottie Scheffler|
|The Genesis Invitational||Jon Rahm (3)|
|The Honda Classic||Chris Kirk|
|Arnold Palmer Invitational||Kurt Kitayama (first TOUR win)|
|THE PLAYERS Championship||Scottie Scheffler (2)|
|Valspar Championship||Taylor Moore (first TOUR win)|
|Corales Puntacana||Matt Wallace (first TOUR win)|
|WGC – Dell Technologies MP||Sam Burns|
Recent Winners at Valero
Italics – not entered this week
|2022||JJ Spaun (-13)||One of four at 10-under entering the final round; won by two for first TOUR win.|
|2021||Jordan Spieth (-18)||One of five players 10-under or better; Fifth place was eight shots back.|
|2020||No Event – COVID-19|
|2019||Corey Conners (-20)||Monday qualifier wins, sets tournament scoring record by three shots. First TOUR win in perfect weather.|
|2018||Andrew Landry (-17)||Set the tournament scoring record by three shots. First TOUR win.|
|2017||Kevin Chappell (-12)||Played from the final group on Sunday on picked up his first TOUR victory.|
|2016||Charley Hoffman (-12)||Nobody has won more money here since the move in 2010. Oldest winner has five podium finishes to his name.|
Can’t fake it (again) this week! Greg Norman wasn’t remembered for his putting, right? Better be able to work it in the breeze tee to green and pick up the pieces when blown off course.
Making great shots count on the greens will keep the stress off the scorecard. Some guys don’t like Bermuda. Some guys don’t like wind. You get both this week so filter them out!
The pressure of winning for the first time is real but this course accepts solid ball-striking. Not many gimmicks to avoid or navigate and only three water penalty areas, including 18, are on the property. Only two holes have forced carries so keeping it out of the wind and on the deck can work as well.
Chalk (via BetMGM)
Tyrrell Hatton (+1200): Went from lowest back nine in PLAYERS history and a closing 65 to shaking his right hand on the range at Match Play and not winning a match. Volatility? You got it baby!
Rickie Fowler (+1600): Win and he’s in. Been here done this as this is the third consecutive season of putting himself in this position. The other two were MC-T17. Third times and charms.
Si Woo Kim (+1800): Sony champ racking up top 30s for fun. Only cash outside is T39 at a brutal Bay Hill.
Corey Conners (+2000): Super tee to green and never misses here.
Chris Kirk (+2500): Already a winner this season and already a winner in Texas. Lovely combination.
Hideki Matsuyama (+2500): Pesky stiff neck has been bothering him on and off for a year. WD here last year with the same ailment.
Top 10/Top 20/Top 40
Matt Kuchar (+2800): Plays here annually and plays well including his last three visits (T2-T12-T7).
Cam Davis (+4000): Aussies and wind and all that.
Ryan Fox (+4000): Haven’t seen anything to scare me off. Tee to green monster.
Adam Schenk (+5500): Career best at Valspar. Took last week off.
Sam Stevens (+8000): OK St won’t mind wind. Super ball-striker.
Charley Hoffman (+10000): Can’t ignore this course horse. If he’s going to find form it’s going to be this week on this course.
Use ’em wherever you see fit! All players listed are +10000 or worse and are for a reason or two!
Kramer Hickok (+10000)
Ryan Palmer (+10000)
Harry Hall (+10000)
Dylan Frittelli (+12500)
MJ Daffue (+12500)
Henrik Norlander (+15000)
Brent Grant (+20000)
Jason Dufner (+40000)
Last Week – WGC – Dell Technologies Match Play
MY CHOICE: Scottie Scheffler – Fourth
Had a four footer to make the final and double my money. Needless to say he didn’t. Losing the consolation match only was about $300k so that’s not even enough to get worried about in Spotter’s Game.
|Sungjae Im – Maui|
|Tom Kim – Sony|
|Tom Hoge – AMEX|
|Viktor Hovland – Pebble|
|Xander Schauffele – WMPO|
|Max Homa – Riviera|
|Shane Lowry – Honda|
|Tyrrell Hatton – API|
|Akshay Bhatia – PRO|
|Jason Day – THE PLAYERS|
|Justin Rose – Valspar|
|Cam Percy – Corales|
|Scottie Scheffler – WGC MP|
This Week – Valero Texas Open
MY CHOICE: Rickie Fowler
This will be the shortest field he plays against unless he returns to Detroit this summer. I’ll take my chances for a game race but this field and this weather suggests nothing will be obvious this week.
Those of you needing CRAZIER SELECTIONS look to Matt Kuchar, Cam Davis, Ryan Fox or Thomas Detry.
Last Week – WGC Match Play
A disaster, just as I predicted. Max Homa didn’t win the event. Tyrrell Hatton didn’t win a match. Keith Mitchell didn’t upset his group; that was Billy Horschel. Jason Day didn’t knock off Scheffler. Of course there were upsets, I found none of them. We move on.