The Frys.com Open – Fantasy Golf Preview
Here we are, with the Frys.com Open and the opening event of the 2014/15 PGA Tour where the first shots of the Fedex Cup will be fired. The PGA Tour ‘Fall Series’ comprises of seven events running between now and mid-November before the tour shuts down until Hawaii in January.
A number of Ryder Cup players have entered the first event of the season – Patrick Reed, Jimmy Walker, Matt Kuchar and Hunter Mahan from the US team and Lee Westwood from the winning European team. This event also sees many players making their PGA tour debut after qualifying from the Web.com tour just a couple of weeks back.
The Frys.com Open will be played this year at the Silverado Country Club in Napa, California and has played to both PGA Tour and Champions Tour events since the course opened in 1955. In 1966 the course was redesigned by Robert Trent Jones Jr and is played over a par of 71. This will be the first time the Frys.com Open will be played here.
Last year the tournament was won by Jimmy Walker, the first of his three tournament wins early in the season. Vijay Singh finished two shots back and was a shot ahead of Kevin Na, Scott Brown, Hideki Matsuyama and Brooks Koepka. Jonas Blixt won the event the year before, a shot ahead of Tim Petrovic and Jason Kokrak. Other previous winners include Rocco Mediate, Mike Weir, Bryce Molder, Cameron Beckman and Troy Matteson.
Eight Picks & Sleeper Options
Patrick Reed – $10,500
Reed certainly lived up to some of his own hype at the Ryder Cup, being the top performing player on the US team and will enter this season with renewed confidence. Reed finished last season solidly without being spectacular, however with two wins on the year, he knows he can get the job done every time he tees up.
Jimmy Walker – $11,200
Walker was perhaps the other star of the US Ryder Cup team and is also the defending champion this week. Walker was solid throughout the whole of last season, and he ended the year with three top twenty finishes. The start of last season saw three victories by the middle of February, so he’ll be happy to enter the early stages of the season again.
Richard Sterne – $7,800
Sterne is a player who plays all around the world, particularly on the European tour and in his native South Africa. He amassed enough points last year to qualify for the Web.com tour finals and a second place in his third event won him a PGA tour card for 2014/2015. Following his second place finish, he finished 6th in the Alfred Dunhill Championship in Europe last week , finishing with rounds of 66,68 and 67 – so is a player full of confidence heading into the week.
Andres Romero – $7,100
Five or six years ago big things were expected of Romero, a player who reached the verge of the top twenty in the world. In the middle of last year he was as low as 294th in the World Rankings, however a solid run at the end of the year has seen him rise to 204th with a run of eight straight made cuts featuring three top twenty finishes. This could be the year Romero gets back on track.
John Huh – $6,400 – Sleeper
John Huh can be something of a hit or miss player. This year has seen him miss the cut twelve times out of twenty four tournaments, but it’s also seen him finish third twice after a missed cut. Last year he played this stretch of tournaments solidly, starting the season with five straight made cuts – seems Huh plays better in tournaments without a whole host of big names.
Derek Fathauer – $6,400 – Sleeper
Fathauer graduated from the Web.com tour with full honors after capturing the Tour Championship at the end of the season, the end of a stellar run with 9 th, 16th and 8th place finishes preceding the win. In March of this year he was ranked 905th in the world, now he is up to 174th. If you want to pick a player in form this week, look no further.
Andrew Svoboda – $5,400 – Sleeper
Svoboda is a solid tour professional without ever quite hitting the heights. He started off last season poorly, but finished the season better, making the cut in eight of his last ten events. A second place at the Zurich Classic this year, as well as two wins on the Web.com tour in 2013, shows a player who is not afraid to get involved on a Sunday.
Carlos Ortiz – $4,200 – Sleeper
Ortiz is a player who has known his PGA tour card was secure since his second win of the season on the Web.com tour in April. He went off the boil after this until an unexpected win in August gave him his third win of 2014. In 18 events on the secondary tour last year, he missed the cut seven times but also won three times – so it looks like this player is a gamble, but when you get him right, he is very right.
Jimmy Walker and Matt Kuchar share favoritism this week and are just ahead of a group of three players in Hunter Mahan, Hideki Matsuyama and Patrick Reed. Brooks Koepka, Graham Delaet and Brandt Snedeker make up the rest of the top eight in the betting.
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