Football season has officially wrapped up and we can set every ounce of our attention on the Tour now. With a relatively weak field, my first thought is that ownership will concentrate pretty heavily near the top of the board. When that happens, we’re usually looking at one or two mid-range leverage plays that make the difference in lineups.
Checking The Chalk
The two most talked about golfers this week are Jordan Spieth ($9,700) and Jason Day ($9,500). Spieth is coming off of one of his first top-five finishes over the past few years. His recent form combined with the fact that he’s won this event in the past will certainly send his ownership into the stratosphere.
Day, on the other hand, is coming off two missed cuts so his ownership is almost exclusively course history driven. That seems … suboptimal. We’ve learned over the last few years that chasing chalk in this range isn’t the best idea. The gap between the most successful and least successful golfer at the top end of the salary scale isn’t enough to justify eating a ton of chalk. They sport the two lowest probabilities of hitting the optimal lineup per our simulator here. Spieth and Day hit the perfect lineup in just 13% and 14.4% of simulations, respectively.
Going slightly up or down in salary from these two will likely grant you a significant ownership discount. Right above these two, we have Will Zalatoris ($9,900) who appeared in the perfect lineup over 30% of the time. This field is the perfect opportunity for a golfer with limited status to hoist a trophy for the first time. If you go down in salary, I’m willing to go back to the Sam Burns ($9,100) well. In his last two events, he’s finished T18 and T22 and he definitely fits the Pebble Beach mold.