Course Preview & Picks By Salary Tier – Valero Texas Open

By April 17, 2017PGA, PGA Premium

Introduction

Written by KendoVT

Golfers on the PGA Tour move to Texas this week to play the Valero Texas Open from TPC San Antonio. The Texas Open is one of the oldest tournaments on Tour but has only been playing at TPC San Antonio since 2010. Any course history before that should be ignored. TPC San Antonio consistently ranks as one of the ten hardest courses on Tour. The course was designed by Greg Norman is 2009. Supposedly Norman was going through a divorce at the time of making this course and it somewhat shows in his layout. It is a very long and difficult course. The par 5s are especially long with most being close to 600 yards. The weather usually plays a factor here as high winds are the norm. Looking at the weather forecast as of now, it looks like there will be a lot of rain this week in San Antonio and winds will be in the 10-20 mph range. This could make the course play even longer than it already is because of the soft conditions. Make sure to check the forecast as the week moves on to see if there will be any advantages in AM/PM tee times the first two days. One last tidbit on the course. A lot of Australians tend to do well here. In interviews many of them say that TPC San Antonio reminds them of courses back in their home country. This makes sense as Greg Norman designed the course and windy conditions are usually the norm Down Under. Just something to think about while you’re picking your golfers this week.

Course Preview

TPC San Antonio is a 7,435 yard par 72 with four par 3s and four par 5s. Only one par 5 is reachable by all. There are 58 bunkers on the course and water hazards on three holes. Off the tee golfers will face narrow tree lined fairways with large bunkers in play. “Native areas” will play a big factor on missed drives as Kevin Na famously showed with his 16 on number 9 a few years ago. These “native areas” consist of desert, brush, trees, and rocks. Golfers will need to avoid these areas or get lucky when they do hit into them to succeed this week. These fairways are some of the toughest on Tour to hit as only around 56% of tee shots land in the short grass. The rough is thicker than the last couple of tournaments played but it should not be too much of a hindrance. On approach shots golfers will see average size greens that are multi-tiered with a lot of undulation. Like Augusta National, the edges around the greens are closely mowed so many approach shots that just miss will lead to tricky up and downs from different collection areas or bunkers. Only around 57% of approach shots land on the green so getting it up and down from off the greens will be important. The greens are usually firm but with wet weather in the forecast they could play a bit softer than previous years. The speed of the greens are average with a stimpmeter rating of around 11 and the grass used on the greens is Bermuda grass.

Key Stats For The Course

***In order of importance with the most important first. Not including Strokes Gained Putting (SG:P) and Strokes Gained Tee to Green (SG:T2G), which are key stats every week.

Birdie or Better Percentage (BoB%):

Because of the difficulty of the course, bogeys are going to happen. There’s really no way to avoid them unless the weather conditions are pristine. To counteract these bogeys, golfers will need to make plenty of birdies to contend. Looking at trends since 2010, BoB% is the number 1 correlating stat for golfers finishing in the Top 3. 21/25 golfers that finished T3 or better were inside the Top 88 in this stat for the specific year they finished Top 3.

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That’s it for this week. For more PGA DFS knowledge check out my Podcast. It’s called Fantasy Golf Degenerates and you can find it on iTunes. Make sure you check out the other golf DFS tools on ProjectRoto including Jaebberwock’s weekly cheat sheet and the Moosenomics spreadsheet, as it is the best in the business. Also follow me on Twitter @KendoVT for more fantasy golf info! Good luck to everyone this week and hopefully you win big.

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