What’s going on guys. Alex here, and I am back with my DraftKings PGA Sleeper Picks for The Puerto Rico Open. Last week I had another successful week with all three of main picks making the cut, with Wesley Bryan finishing 69th, Martin Kaymer T23, and Lucas Glover T7. We didn’t have another winner, but it was great to see Kaymer in the top 25 and especially Glover inside the top ten. This week The Tour heads to Coco Beach Golf Club in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico for The 2017 Puerto Rico Open. Coco Beach is a par 72 that is 7,506 yards long. Accurate and shorter players can definitely have success here, but I am leaning towards targeting longer hitters with rain in the forecast for all four days. Distance isn’t a must with players electing to club down on some of these holes, but for the holes they will hit driver, it will be an advantage if the course is a very soft.
Just like the last few weeks, par five scoring will be very important here at Coco, with the last five winners of this event shooting an average of 8.8 strokes under par on these par fives. Also, like every week, we want to target good greens in regulation players, with water and sand traps surrounding most of these greens. So this week the main stats I will be looking for in my picks are strokes gained tee to green, greens in regulation percentage, driving distance, driving accuracy (not a must), strokes gained putting, birdie or better percentage, and par five scoring. This is by far one of the weakest fields we will see this season with most of the best players on The Tour competing in The WGC Dell Match Play. Now this is still a full field with a cut line in effect, but with DraftKings making most of their contests smaller, it makes sense in my opinion to play a smaller percentage of your bankroll than you do on usual weeks. Also if you want more picks for The Puerto Rico Open, check out Geoff’s DraftKings picks through this link and Keegan’s betting picks that will be posted soon.As always if any of these picks help you win or if you need any advice let me know on Twitter. @Hunta512.
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Nick Taylor: (7,200) Taylor is quietly having a very solid season making 9/12 cuts overall. He has now made the cut in five of his last six tournaments, with three straight made cuts, including a T10 at The Pebble Beach Pro Am. He has only played here at Coco Beach once, last season, but he was terrific in his first event here, finishing with a T5 at last year’s Puerto Rico Open. He isn’t the flashiest player ranking 69th in driving distance (294.2 yards), 109th in strokes gained tee to green, 147th in strokes gained putting, 109th in GIR percentage (67.2%), and 105th in birdie or better percentage, but he is a very strong par five scorer which should help him again here this season, with him ranking 15th in par five scoring so far this year.
The one concern I have with him is can really spray it off the tee ranking 149th in driving accuracy this season, but even though he only hit 59% of these fairways last season, he made up for it with the rest of his game, specifically his putting on these Paspalum greens, with his very low 26.3 average putts per round for the week. Now we all now putting can be a week to week thing, but this is a nice sign that should be able to putt well on these greens again this time around, with him arguably in better form this season. I am not expecting another T5, but he definitely has top 20 upside, and is a solid value play at only $7,200.
Trey Mullinax: (6,500) Maybe I am just a sucker for Mullinax, but in my opinion he is just way too cheap when considering his talent in this weak field. Yes he has missed his last two cuts, but before this he had made four straight and seven of his last nine cuts. He hasn’t competed in two weeks, since The Valspar, so hopefully he took that time to straighten out his game. Overall for the year his stats are solid, ranking 115th in strokes gained tee to green, 90th in strokes gained putting, 7th in driving distance, 135th in GIR percentage (65.9%), 43rd in birdie or better percentage, and 56th in par five scoring.
He has never competed here but I think if we see him get back to his old form, he has a great chance to make the cut considering this field of players. Also if the rain does actually pan out, his long 308.7 yard average drive will be huge for him. There is no way he can be considered a safe play right now, but I think he is worth a shot in GPPs with the hope that he will bounce back this week.
Michael Bradley: (5,900) The Champions Tour regular is a course horse here at Coco that should come with a very low ownership. He is 7/8 in The Puerto Rico Open including a T26 last season, a T15 in 2010, and a wins in 2009 and 2011. The 50 year old has only played in one PGA official event this year, but he competed when he teed it up, making the cut and finishing with a T42 at The Sanderson Farms Championship. He is 3/3 in the new year on The Champions Tour, with a 69.7% GIR percentage and a 280.5 yard average drive.
Even though these courses are much easier, he has also been playing well on par fives, shooting -4.3 on the par fives in his last three events. I am expecting him to fare well on these par fives here at Coco that he is very familiar with, shooting -9 on these same par fives just last year. Even though he is an older player $5,900 is a ridiculous price for a player with this type of course history. At this salary, he is a nice gamble to make the cut that will can help you squeeze in multiple high end players.
Also Consider: Ryan Brehm, Martin Flores, Seamus Power, Tim Wilkinson, Rory Sabbantini, Boo Weekley, Bryson DeChambeau, Ben Crane (four straight made cuts), Zac Blair, and Brad Fritsch.