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Will Spieth Come to Life for the Masters? Yahoo! PGA DFS Values and Pivots

Yahoo! is making a push to be a real player in the DFS space and it’s hard to argue against them given their rules and format. For more on the basics of how to play PGA DFS on Yahoo, check out last week’s article here.

The contest I’m most interested in over at Yahoo this week is the $100k GPP. The basics are simple. It’s a 10-Entry Max $20 contest with 5,682 entries. The top 1,144 place and get a share of the prize pool – top 5 payouts are in the table below.

Top of the Prize Pool

Place Payout
1st $20,000
2nd $10,000
3rd $5,000
4th $2,000
5th $1,000

Attacking the Slate

Enough of the housekeeping, though … the question is how are we going to attack the slate and win some money. You can find a more in-depth breakdown of the course and trends here. One of the first things I try and do when salaries are posted is to take a look at how the bookmakers view a tourney vs. how the salaries shake out. More often than not it’s pretty much in line but sometimes you find some values.

Values vs. Vegas

If you’re looking at win equity compared to salary, Jordan Spieth ($32) looks like a value at his price. He’s listed at 22-1 on some books. Rickie Fowler ($43) and Paul Casey ($39) are at the same odds but significantly higher in Yahoo! pricing this week. The case for Spieth lies, mainly, in his stellar course history. He’s made a handful of starts here. In that span, he’s donned the green jacket, finished in the Top 3 on four separate occasions and had an 11th place finish. Spieth showed signs of life in spurts last week in San Antonio but has yet to put four solid rounds together in 2019. There’s value there but there is definitely some risk, as well.

There are three golfers at 50-1 in the field this week in Matt Kuchar ($39), Tony Finau ($37), and Henrik Stenson ($27). There’s a huge discount on Yahoo! for Stenson. He’s always gotten it around Augusta pretty well but really broke through for a 5th place finish last year. Stenson hasn’t exactly lit it up on Tour this year, though. He’s made three of his last four cuts but hasn’t done better than T17 over that span. Stenson is playing a bit of whack-a-mole with his ball-striking, ranging anywhere from 58 percent to 75 percent of GIR during those four starts.

High Priced Pivots

There are three golfers priced at $48 this week: Dustin Johnson, Justin Rose, and Justin Thomas. We have a brand new Sim Scores and Pivots App that just went live. I figured I’d take a look at the most expensive guys and see if we can’t find some cheaper options that are playing similarly over their past few starts. This doesn’t mean you’re all out fading any of those top guys, but it gives you a bit of an arbitrage opportunity where you can save some dough.

We’ll start with Dustin Johnson ($48). It’s nearly impossible to replicate DJ’s skillset in each facet of his game, but when guys run hot they can approach some semblance of his game. Per the Pivots App, Keith Mitchell ($22) is that guy this week. It’s not a perfect comp (83.5 Sim Score), but Killer Keith – as he’s affectionately known – is doing his best DJ impression. They both have length off the tee and are hitting plenty of greens.
Next up is Justin Rose ($48). His fellow countryman is his closest comp with a 97.3 Sim Score over their past three starts. This comp is much closer as the biggest difference between the two is a few yards off the tee and about 5 percent of fairways hit. Matt Wallace ($24) is on sale for 50 percent off compared to Rose and is playing very well in his own right.
Last up for our expensive group is Justin Thomas ($48). There are plenty of names that stick out here but the closest comp (94.9 Sim Score) is Bubba Watson ($36). For those that are unfamiliar, Bubba’s been known to make his way around this course pretty well himself as he owns two green jackets. If you’re considering paying all the way up for JT, then Watson would be an interesting arbitrage for those lineups where you don’t quite have as much salary leftover.

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