2018 AT&T Byron Nelson Classic

Fantasy Golf Picks for the 2018 AT&T Byron Nelson Classic

THE OVERVIEW

Trinity Forest Golf Club, Dallas, Texas – Trinity Forest Golf Club is a Bill Coore/Ben Crenshaw design that only opened in 2016. It is a links-style track that is virtually treeless and uses constant undulation, native grass areas, and strategically-placed bunkers as it’s main defenses. This is the first year the Byron Nelson is using this facility and it may prove troublesome for many of the players who are not familiar with it. It should be noted that Jordan Spieth and Beau Hossler have extensive familiarity with the course.

The wind here could be a bit of trouble, so keep an eye on the forecast when selecting your players. For us, were are going to be looking at current form, correlating courses (perhaps Chambers Bay and Royal Birkdale), and SG Around the Green when selecting our line up.

 

PAST WINNERS

These past winners have been at TPC Four Seasons. This is the first year at the Trinity Forest course.

2017  -12   Billy Horschel    (Runner Up, Playoff:    Jason Day)

2016  -15   Sergio Garcia   (Runner Up, Playoff:   Brooks Koepka)

2015  -18   Steven Bowditch   (Runners Up:   -14   Charley Hoffman, Scott Pinckey, Jimmy Walker)

 

THE ODDS    (Bovada 5/14/2018)

Jordan Spieth +500

Matt Kuchar  +1200

Sergio Garcia  +1400

Hideki Matsuyama  +1800

Billy Horschel  +2000

Branden Grace  +2000

Jimmy Walker  +2000

Adam Scott  +2200

Marc Leishman  +2200

Beau Hossler  +2800

Aaron Wise  +3500

Brandt Snedeker  +3500

Charles Howell III  +4000

Martin Laird  +4000

Graeme McDowell  +5000

Kevin Na  +5000

Scott Piercy  +5000

Chez Reavie  +5500

Grayson Murray  +5500

Peter Uihlein  +5500

Rory Sabbatini  +5500

Ryan Palmer  +5500

Bill Haas  +7000

Russel Knox  +7000

 

WHO’S HOT

Jimmy Walker

Chesson Hadley

Billy Horschel

Satoshi Kodaira

Scott Piercy

Charles Howell III

 

HORSES FOR THE COURSE

First year at the Trinity Forest course. 

 

LONGER SHOTS

Harris English +7500

J.B. Holmes +7500

Satoshi Kodaira +8000

Maverick McNealy +8500

James Hahn +9000

Joaquin Niemann +9000

Keith Mitchell +9000

Aaron Baddeley +10000

Andrew Putnam +10000

Daniel Summerhays +10000

John Huh +10000

Johnson Wagner +10000

Kelly Kraft +10000

Patrick Rodgers +10000

Sam Saunders +10000

Seamus Power +10000

Tom Lovelady +10000

Troy Merritt +10000

Abraham Ancer +12500

Ben Crane +12500

Brian Gay +12500

Corey Conners +12500

J.T. Poston +12500

Kevin Tway +12500

Michael Thompson +12500

Sam Ryder +12500

Shawn Stefani +12500

Vaughn Taylor +12500

Ben Martin +14000

Nate Lashley +14000

Talor Gooch +14000

C.T. Pan +15000

Cody Gribble +15000

David Lingmerth +15000

Geoff Ogilvy +15000

J.J. Spaun +15000

Matt Jones +15000

Padraig Harrington +15000

Richy Werenski +15000

Ryan Armour +15000

Tyrone Van Aswegen +15000

Anirban Lahiri +16000

Brian Stuard +16000

Nicholas Lindheim +16000

Alex Cejka +17500

Joel Dahmen +17500

Sung Kang +17500

Tyler Duncan +17500

 

FAITHFULS

Matt Kuchar

Branden Grace

Adam Scott

Charles Howell III

Graeme McDowell

 

THE ‘FORE’ SOMES

‘FORE’ SOMES are chosen by selecting one player from a “low tier” betting pool (30:1 or better), two players from a “mid tier” (30:1 – 75:1), and a final player from a “high tier” (75:1 & up).  

KEITH’S ‘FORE’ SOME 

Matt Kuchar (14:1).  Tough week for picks seeing as there is no course history. However, the track this week will likely require a more experienced temperament, advanced knowledge of links-style play, and the ability to know where not to leave a shot. Since Spieth is currently sitting at a ridiculous 5 to 1, taking Kuchar at 14 still almost feels like chalk, but it also feels right. When taking into account possible correlations for this track (which I narrowed down to last year’s Open Championship at Royal Birkdale and the 2015 US Open – one player actually called Trinity Forest a more reasonable links course than Chambers Bay), Jordan Spieth, Matt Kuchar, Branden Grace, Adam Scott, and Marc Leishman all showed well. But once you disregard Spieth’s unplayable number, I think Kuchar is the best pick. He hasn’t missed a cut all year and his T17 last week was his best finish since a T8 six weeks earlier at the Houston Open. In this lighter field, I love Kuchar’s chances at a solid finish. It must also be noted that Beau Hossler (currently sitting at 28:1) lives just down the road and it has been said that he loves this track. Worth a look. 

Martin Laird  (40:1)  & Peter Uihlein (50:1).  Going with the more experienced player picks last week resulted in one near success, Ian Poulter finishing T11, and one dud, Zach Johnson missing the cut. This week I am doubling down not only on player experience in terms of years, but also region. The 35-year-old Scottsman Martin Laird checks the boxes for me this week. On the year, he is gaining half a stroke both around the green and putting. He has two top tens in his last eight starts and a T11 at the Valero. Currently 100th on the OWGR, Laird is an experienced pro with ample links knowledge who is having a solid season, at 40 to 1, I like it. I was going to continue with the theme of experience and region and take Graeme McDowell, but his numbers and form are just too off. So, I am taking a stab on Peter Uihlein. This is more of a gut pick and a personal fave, so be sure to take that into account, but the 28-year-old from Oklahoma State is coming off his PGA tour best T5 at the Wells Fargo (won’t mention the three straight prior MCs). That, along with his extensive experience playing in Europe, is enough for me to take a chance on him.

Ben Crane  (125:1).  I had three different names in this spot before I spied Ben Crane  at 125 to 1. It is a bit of a crap shoot in this range and, again, I like the experience in this lighter field. Beyond that, Crane is ranking very well in stat models. For the past 5 rolling events he leads SG Around the Green, ranks second in both SG Tee to Green and Par-4 Scoring, and BOB Percentage and Proximity stats also ranks well against the field.

 

**(differing odds come from Will Hill)

 

JOHN’S ‘FORE’ SOME 

Hideki Matsuyama  20:1

Peter Uihlein  50:1

Grayson Murray  60:1

Joaquin Niemann  80:1

 

Listen to this week’s podcast to hear the team’s thoughts on the event and tweet us @fantasygolfww or #fgww.

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