After an exciting finish to The Masters, the PGA is in South Carolina this week as it is set to host the 2017 RBC Heritage Classic. This tournament is to be played at Harbour Town Golf Links which is a Par 70 measured at7,099 yards. It is essentially the opposite of Augusta National, the course played last week, as this course favors accuracy rather than power/bombers. Featuring eleven Par 4s, and only four Par 3s and three Par 5s, the ability to have good, consistent string of approach shots is going to play a huge role in the success of the golfers at this tournament. The field features 18 of the worlds top 50 golfers, so in terms of ‘field strength’ , this would be considered a medium. In the past three years, the winners of this tournament have been Branden Grace, Jim Furyk, and Matt Kuchar. The key statistics that will be weighed heavily for this tournament are SG:Approach, Par 4 BoB%, and GIR, and scrambling.
Russell Knox DK $8,000 FD $7,500
Despite being in pretty terrible form as of late, Knox has proved to have the fundamentals that make him a perfect fit for this course and he comes at a quite cheap salary range. He has not made any cuts in his past 3 ‘cut’ events, however, prior to that, he attained three consecutive top 20 finishes. Knox is no stranger to high finishes, he is just amidst a rough patch in the season. He has had excellent success at this course in the past. In the past three years, he has participated at this event all three years with three Top 20 finishes, two of which were in the top ten. His best finish was last year when he was runner up (2nd) to Branden Grace. These very successful results make a lot of sense considering what Knox brings to his game. This season, even with all of the poor showings, he ranks 10th in driving accuracy, 49th in GIR. His SG:Approach ranking is lackluster however this is mainly due to the fact that he has a 176th SG total ranking. In terms of Par 4 BoB%, Knox makes Birdie or better on 19.19% of his Par 4 holes, which is good enough for 30th in the PGA. Note last season, Knox maintained much more ‘ideal’ form as he ranked top 10 in both GIR and driving accuracy, in addition to his 44th ranked SG:Approach statistic. Overall, I think this is the week Knox breaks out of his slump and puts up a solid Top 25 finish.
Michael Kim DK $7,000 FD $5,700
Michael Kim has been very solid in tournaments which he suits very well this season. Not to mention, he has made his last three cuts, with his last two being Top 20 finishes. Last time out at the Shell Houston Open, Kim finished -8 and only shot 6 bogeys over the entire tournament. Finding bogey avoidance within this value range tends to be difficult. The mix of consistency and upside with Kim makes him a solid value play pretty much any week. In his only ever appearance at this tournament, last year, Kim made the cut but struggled in the final rounds as he finished in the 70’s on the leaderboard. Nonetheless, Kim has shown great form and within his statistics is extraordinary course fit. His lowest key statistic is GIR% as he ranks 106th with a modest 67.63 gir%. In his most recent tournament, however, his GIR was absolutely superb [81.94%] and this was THE BEST in the FIELD. Moreover, he has decent rankings in the other key statistics. His SG:Approach is excellent, ranking 64th in the PGA. Scrambling to the green, Kim converts 62.31% of the time which is 57th best in the PGA. Moreover, Kim loves the Par 4s and they are by far his favorite hole to play. He ranks 12th in the PGA in Par 4 scoring average at 3.96 and 19th in Par 4 BoB%, converting 19.96% of the time. Since this course is very heavily Par 4 reliant, and with his very accurate consistent form as of late, Kim makes for arguably the best value play this week.
Bryson DeChambeau DK $8,300 FD $6,300
I was all about to jump on the Bryson DeChambeau wagon this week until I saw his price tag. $8,300 isn’t a ton, but it is far too much for someone who hasn’t proven much so far on tour. Yes, Bryson played well here last year, but he was coming off of his made cut at the Masters and could have carried that momentum over. I am not buying into his T2 finish at the Puerto Rico Open as it was a less than average field. For a relatively short hitter, Bryson only ranks 71st in good drive percentage in the field. I am not willing to gamble on Bryson this week, who will likely be one of the higher owned golfers in the $8K range.
Jim Furyk DK $7,900 FD $9,200
Jim Furyk has been struggling this season, and it shows with his lack of high finishes. He doesn’t have a finish inside the top 30 this calendar year. Harbour Town is the perfect place for Furyk to get back on track, much like Russell Knox. Furyk has had great success at this course, winning this event in 2015 and has two other top 10 results in the past five seasons. He is known for his plotter type style of play, which is exactly what is required at Pete Dye designed courses. He is the fourth most expensive golfer on FanDuel, compared to the 22nd most expensive on DraftKings. That is obvious value.
Bill Haas DK $9,100 FD $9,000
Boring Bill Haas is flying under the radar once again. Haas has just eight tags, just over half the amount Adam Hadwin and Tyrrell Hatton have, who surround Haas in the pricing. Haas ranks second in my weighted stat rankings, coming in at 11th in strokes gained approach and first in strokes gained around the green. Haas came T14 last year at the Heritage, so there is potential he can crack inside the top 15 again. He will be much lower owned then other $9K golfers, setting up the perfect GPP pivot.
William McGirt DK $7,900 FD $7,000
Dirt McGirt is coming off of an impressive Masters showing, as his name lingered around the top of the leaderboard for most of the week. Even with last week’s results, McGirt is being overshadowed by other golfers in his price range. Pat Perez, Luke Donald and Wesley Bryan are all drawing more attention this week than McGirt, McGirt has two top 10 finishes at the RBC Heritage in the past three years, as it is expected his style of play would translate well to Harbour Town. He is accurate off the tee and will hit a ton of greens this week. Just like the big man himself, I will be overweight on McGirt.
Martin Kaymer DK $9,500 FD $8,500
Martin Kaymer is a cut making machine. It has been over a year since his last missed cut, which was the 2016 Valspar Championship. He enters the RBC Heritage with six straight top 25 finishes, including a T16 last week at the Masters. Kaymer put together a great -4 round on Sunday to climb back up the leaderboard at Augusta. Let’s hope that form carries over to this week and Kaymer can anchor your cash game lineup, helping provide a profitable week. Kaymer is $2,000 cheaper that Matt Kuchar, and they are basically the exact same golfer at the moment. I’d argue Kaymer is just as safe and provides a much higher ceiling. Kaymer in cash is a must.
Adam Hadwin DK $8,800 FD $8,400
Adam Hadwin is playing the best golf of his life right now and there is no reason to get off the train now. Hadwin struggled the first day last week at Augusta, but he quickly figured out how to put on the tough greens and cruised to a T36 finish in his first trip to the Masters. Hadwin ranks 10th in good drive percentage in this field, and because of his elite putting ability, he also has one of the highest scrambling rates. He has played in this event the past two seasons, and now gets to take it on as a completely different golfer. Hadwin could easily get on a role this week and be knocking in putts from all over on his way to his second win of the season.