Here we are at the conclusion of the 2017 PGA season and the last stop on the FedEx Cup Race. This week the top 30 golfers head to Atlanta for the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club. This tournament has been played here since 2004 so there is plenty of data to consider. It is important to note, however, that the course was redesigned prior to the 2016 Tour Championship so hole-by-hole data may be best left to just the 2016 tournament. Since this week’s field is only 30 golfers we are looking at another no cut event and it is even more critical to get the right players in your lineup with very little room for error. So, for the last time this season, let’s dig in!
Here are the big things that stood out to me when looking at the course profile from last year:
- Hole 9 and 15, two of the four Par 3s, have the two highest percentages of scores under par. They are both over 200 yards in length so looking at guys who rank high in BoB% from 200+ yards is a good place to start:
- Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas, Patrick Cantlay, Jhonattan Vegas, Justin Rose, Jon Rahm, Pat Perez
- Holes 5, 10, and 13 all have a fairly high rate of scores over par. These three holes are all Par 4s and have an approach distance between 125-150 yards. So I will be weighing this approach distance a little above the rest when trying to decide which golfers I want in my lineup:
- Kyle Stanley, Jordan Spieth, Justin Rose, Dustin Johnson, Hideki Matsuyama, and Daniel Berger
- This week is another Par 70 course, which leaves players looking at twelve Par 4s this week. So I want to make sure that anyone I play is going to be able to score on Par 4s. So I want to look at those players who excel in Par 4 BoB%:
- Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth, Jon Rahm, Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler, Xander Schauffele
- Finally, five of the twelve Par 4s this week are between 450-500 yards. To narrow down the Par 4 scorers even further, I will look at Par 4 Efficiency 450-500 yards:
- Jon Rahm, Marc Leishman, Justin Rose, Brooks Koepka, Kevin Chappell
The top 4 guys who showed up in the most takeaways from above are Justin Rose, Jon Rahm, Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas. Hmm give me all the Js this week!
Looking at all of the approach distances that the players will see this week brought some different names to the top:
Maybe this is the week to take a chance on Hideki, as weird as that sounds to say, but I suspect he will be the lowest owned of the top guys. Additionally, taking some shares of Berger and Stanley might be a good way to get some positive variance this week!
Good luck everyone and see you next PGA season!