We’re back in California this week for the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am. This event is best known for 6-hour rounds and a plethora of celebrity sightings. If you want an in-depth look at the courses, check out yesterday’s article.
Checking the Chalk
Jason Day ($10,900) is going to be popular this week. Since the switch to this course rotation on 2010, he’s carded 15 of 27 rounds in the 60s at this event, averaging 86.6 DK points across seven starts. It’s not just course history that has people considering him this week. Day has started out his 2019 campaign with a bang. He had a 13th place finish in Hawaii and a Top 5 at the Farmers Insurance Open. He dominated the par 5s at Torrey Pines, hitting 13-under on those holes. Tony Finau ($10,600) is showing up in quite a few places as well, despite the missed cut last time out. The sentiment around him is much more mixed, so he might not be uber-chalk come this week.
Chez Reavie’s ($9,000) course history is a bit of a question mark heading into this week. In eight starts here, he’s made just four cuts. That would typically lead people to believe that it just isn’t a great fit for him at Pebble Beach. Last year, though, he finished in second place. It’s a bit of a conundrum if we look at it through the course-history lens. As far as his recent form, though, he comes in with two top-five finishes over his past three starts. Those results have been largely propped up by his game around the green. Reavie is on a streak of four straight events averaging 27 putts per round and has been relying on scrambling to stay in contention.
All the cool kids are starting to hate on Jordan Spieth ($9,400). Rooting against Spieth is the equivalent of stroking your handlebar mustache and bragging about how you liked The Lumineers before they got big. There are legit concerns about his game, though, as it seems that he’s developed a case of the yips on the greens. Someone this popular with this many question marks might give some people pause while others dive headfirst into the fact that he won this event two years ago.
As we dip below this range, some other golfers may become popular. I’ll add notes to this section if anyone becomes extremely chalky, but as of now, ownership looks pretty flat in the $8,000 and $7,000 ranges.
Tommy Fleetwood ($10,300) hasn’t missed a cut since July. He has hit at least two-thirds of greens in regulation in all of his starts dating back to August. My model gives him a 47 percent chance at finishing in the top 15 of DK scoring, which is tied for the best chance with some guy named Dustin Johnson ($11,400).
Shane Lowry ($8,800) could get somewhat popular as the week goes on, but he isn’t the chalk of this range. He comes in with great form. Lowry is fresh off of a win and a 12th-place effort in his last two times out. He’s hit more than 70 percent of greens in regulation over the past two events. Since 2015, he’s made the start here each year going 4-for-4 in made cuts. During that four-event stretch, he’s averaged a SOFA (Scoring Over Field Average) of nearly 15 DK points.
Michael Thompson ($7,400) is an interesting name down in the mid-$7,000 range. If not for a couple of 71s the last two times out on Sunday, we would be hearing a lot about Thompson this week. Those shaky Sundays have kept him just off the first page of the leaderboard, and he comes in under the radar this week. Six of his past eight rounds have resulted in rounds in the 60s.
We rolled out Justin Thomas and Byeong-Hun An and were rewarded with two made cuts. Thomas finished in third place. An came out and mashed the first three days and then stumbled to T20 thanks to a rough round on Sunday. Good showing once again, that brings the cash locks to 9-of-10 for made cuts with an average finish of just above 11th place for the cut makers. This week, we’re rolling with:
- Tommy Fleetwood ($10,300)
- Shane Lowry ($8,800)
This is the first time I’m including this section here, so I figured I’d give a little background. The model this week is a logistic regression that is meant to determine the chance a golfer has of finishing in the top 15 of DK scoring based on their profile. It’s essentially a course fit model based on driving distance, driving accuracy, greens in regulation, and SG: Around the Green. The results of that model will be below with the current field, but here are some of the trends I noticed based on the data from previous events.
- There’s a slight emphasis on distance here. In a vacuum, leading the event in driving distance gives you about a 30 percent chance at finishing in the top 15 of DK scoring. Finishing somewhere around 25th in distance drops those chances to 25 percent. Going all the way down to 50th drops you down to 20 percent.
- There’s literally no point in worrying about accuracy off the tee according to this model. Dropping from first to dead last in that category drops your chances from 22.98 percent to 22.53 percent.
Greens in Regulation
- As I mentioned in the course preview article, this is a “second shot” tournament. Without taking anything else into account, leading the event in GIR gives you a 44.9 percent chance at finishing in the top 15 of DK scoring. A drop to 25th and those chances are sliced down to 27.7 percent. Go down to 50th? Not even a 15 percent chance.
SG: Around the Green
- Believe it or not, SG: ARG is relatively important. Leading the field in that category gets you a 34 percent chance while being ranked 25th drops it down to about 25 percent. It flattens out a bit after that, as a rank of 50th in the short game leaves you around 19 percent.
Ownership Projections & Model Results - Pebble Beach Pro-Am
|Player Name||Salary||Ownership||Model Rating|
|Rafael Cabrera Bello||8300||17.1||0.76|
|Ted Potter Jr||7400||4.6||0.64|
|Si Woo Kim||7400||3.2||0.45|
|Tyrone Van Aswegen||7000||0.3||0.23|
|Davis Love III||6700||2.4||0.16|
|Jose de Jesus Rodriguez||6400||0.1||0.22|
|Meen Whee Kim||6400||0.4||0.04|
|Ho Sung Choi||6400||0.1||0.00|