Justin Thomas took down The Honda Classic last week in a playoff win over Luke List and The Tour now makes it way to Mexico for The 2018 WGC-Mexico Championship. This WGC stop is held at Club de Golf Chapultepec (Par 71, 7,330 yards) which is located in Mexico City. This is only the second season this tournament has existed, so we only have last year’s results to fall back on for course history. Dustin Johnson won last season, shooting -14 over Tommy Fleetwood. First off, this course is very high above sea level, helping every player’s ball fly farther. It is such a factor that last season most players elected to club down most of the time off tee, because they don’t lose any distance not using a driver with the air being so thin. Everyone will be able to hit driver length with their irons and hybrids, so it is a smart move to club down to help yourself find the fairway more often, which is key here with most of these fairways surrounded by trees.
So, with basically all of these players not using their drivers, it makes sense to ignore driving distance and driving accuracy stats this week. It is more about finding these small POA greens at a high rate. Also, it makes sense to target strong par four and par five players, with DJ ranking in the top ten in par four scoring and first in par five scoring in his win. This is no cut event, with 65 players in the field. As I always like to mention with these no cut style tournaments, I think targeting players who score well in The DraftKing format, is a very wise move, as every player will get four rounds in, barring a WD or DQ. 45 of the current top 50 players in the world are competing this week, so the field is extremely strong, but with less than half the amount of players were are used to with a normal sized PGA event and no cut line involved, it is a better week to lower how much bankroll you put on the table and to focus more on GPPs over cash games. @Hunta512.
If you want help with PGA research for DraftKings check out the best fantasy tools out there at FantasyLabs.com
Jason Dufner: (7,500) This week, I feel like Dufner is a player that might get overlooked with so many big names in this field. Hopefully this is the case, because he is rather underpriced in my opinion. He had a rocky end to his season last year, but he is now starting to look like the always consistent golfer we know him as, finishing in the top 18 in three of his last four starts, including a T17 last week at The Honda Classic. In his last four starts, his stats have been solid, ranking 25th in SGT2G, 22nd in strokes gained on approach, 29th in GIR, 24th in ball striking, 29th in par four scoring, 18th in par five scoring, 7th in bogeys avoided, 29th in BOB%, and 7th in SGP. (via Fantasy National)
Also, it has been a little while since he has played on POA greens, but when comparing all of these players last eight rounds of golf on this type of surface, Dufner ranks 8th in SGP. Finally, as the savvy veteran he is, Dufner played well here last season in his first attempt in Mexico, carding a solid T21 finish. In this current form, another top 25 is very possible this season and I think he is a fine GPP target at only $7,500. (5-8% projected ownership via Fantasy Labs)
Xander Schauffele: (7,800) He was playing average golf during the beginning of the season, but Schauffele has started to regain his form in his last two starts, posting a T17 at The Waste Management Phoenix Open and then a T9 at The Genesis Open two weeks ago. His rankings have also been great in these two events, ranking 9th in SGT2G, 9th in strokes gained on approach, 15th in GIR, 8th in ball striking, 3rd in par four scoring, 5th in par five scoring, 15th in bogeys avoided, 3rd in BOB%, and 7th overall in DK points when comparing all of these players last eight rounds of golf. (via Fantasy National) He didn’t tee it up at Club de Golf Chapultepec last season, but I don’t believe this should hold you back from rostering Schauffele at this price.
The reigning Tour Championship winner is one of the best young talents in golf right now and he is currently the 22nd ranked player in the world. He is a very strong iron and tee to green player who should be able to handle these tight fairways and small greens. Schauffele has nice upside with how good of a DraftKings scorer he is and is one of the best mid-tier buys of the week, that could possibly go a little under owned, just due to the fact that he didn’t compete here last season. (9-12% projected ownership via Fantasy Labs)
Matthew Fitzpatrick: (7,600) Before his MC at The Dubia Desert Classic last month, Fitz was arguably the hottest player on The European Tour, making 11 straight cuts, finishing in the top 20 in ten straight events, including a victory back at The European Masters. He doesn’t have any rankings because he has only played in one PGA event so far this season, The WGC HSBC Champions, where he finished with a T9, but over his last four starts, even when including the MC at The Dubia Desert, Fitzpatrick has been great with his irons, hitting 72.9% of greens in regulation.
As he usually is, he also has been excellent on the greens, putting a lower 27.5 average putts per round during this stretch. Additionally, he has shot under par in 11 of his last 14 rounds. He played here in Mexico last season and handled the tight course very well, ranking first in fairways hit, shooting -7 on the par fives, helping him to a T16 finish. He currently has 60/1 odds to win this week and is a great value play, that is a nice combination of safety and upside.
Also Consider: Rafael Cabrera-Bello (four straight top 30s), Marc Leishman (could be lower owned coming off a MC at The Genesis. He had three top tens in his prior five starts and has some good odds at 55/1), Matt Kuchar (T20 here last season), Branden Steele, Patton Kizzire (he will be very low owned after letting down people last week), Hao-Tong Li, and Franceso Molinari.