PGA DFS Core Plays: RBC Heritage
Top-ranked grinder, Notorious, breaks down his favorite daily fantasy golf plays at various salary ranges for the coming week’s golf tournament. Who should you be building around? Find out below.
Even though it wasn’t the most climactic Sunday at The Masters, it was one that we will always remember. Hideki Matsuyama became the first Japanese player to ever win a major and the second Asian player to ever win a major. He took full advantage of the course after the rain delay on Saturday and built enough of a lead that it never really felt in doubt on Sunday. Xander Schauffele did birdie 12, 13, 14, and 15, but hit his tee shot into the water on 16. In my opinion, he deserves more credit than criticism. He knew he had to be aggressive and if his shot was one yard farther or one yard to the right, it likely ends up right next to the hole. He was still down two shots at that point. Ultimately, Xander’s water ball allowed Matsuyama to play a safe tee shot to the right of the green. He walked up to the 18th tee needing a bogey to win and that’s exactly what he did. It was an historic win and one that could have a major impact on golf in Japan. His caddie bowing to the course on 18 was such a fitting end to the tournament.
I usually don’t spend a ton of time reviewing the previous event, but I had a lot of notes. Jordan Spieth easily could have won another green jacket. He was the worst in the top 20 in strokes gained putting (by the unofficial stats I saw) and still finished T3. He’s back, baby. Will Zalatoris is not only an amazing young talent, but he has bigger ‘cahones’ than most. He stepped up to the plate and played well on all four days. It was an incredible run and I can’t believe he’s not eligible for the FedExCup Playoffs unless he wins an event. I wasn’t a big fan of the Abraham Ancer penalty. If you are going to enforce that, you need to have close-up HD videos of every shot of every player. We saw some meltdowns last weekend that were entertaining. Billy Horschel tried to hit it out of the water back-to-back days on number 13, he slammed his club into his bag, and he appeared to yell expletives at the flag right before the rain delay. Si Woo Kim slammed his putter on the ground and broke the shaft, which forced him to use a three-wood on the green for his final four holes on Saturday. Justin Thomas didn’t have an anger meltdown, but his snowman on 13 on Saturday cost him a chance at the green jacket.
As for myself, I had a tremendous week of DFS. Last week was by far the most hours I put into research and into content and it luckily paid off. I had a real sweat at the Millionaire Maker (finished 19th) and had that same lineup finish in the top five of the Drive the Green. I had a real shot in the $888 on DraftKings as well. While I didn’t walk away with any life-changing prizes, it was my best week of PGA DFS in a couple of years. I saw a bunch of Tweets from RotoGrinders members taking down some tournaments, so I hope a lot of my amazing readers had a good week as well. It’s sad that we have to wait another year for another trip down Magnolia Lane, but the wait is one of the many things that makes The Masters so special.
RBC Heritage Preview
We now turn our attention to the RBC Heritage. Harbour Town Golf Link is in stark contrast to Augusta National, where you can essentially hit driver on every hole. Harbour Town is a Pete Dye design that measures 7,121 yards on the scorecard. It features tight lines off the tee and landing areas narrow the closer you get to the hole. Average driving distance at this event is right near the bottom of the PGA Tour each and every year. Many of the forced layups result in golfers hitting their approach shots from the same yardages (many from 150-200 yards), so we can throw driving distance out the window this week. While hitting fairways is certainly a positive this week, golfers need to hit their tee shot on the correct side of the hole in order to avoid hanging limbs from trees. As with most Dye designs, this is a visually intimidating golf course.
Harbour Town features three gettable par fives and is a Par 71 in total. I’m not putting much stock into last year’s edition of this event because it was played at a different time of year. It was one of the first events back from the COVID break and featured one of the best fields that we saw all season. There was very little wind that week and the course was much softer than usual. A combination of easier scoring conditions and a stacked field is why the winning score ended up being so low. I expect it to play much tougher this year, especially with heavy wind in the forecast for Thursday. The greens here are very small and hard to hit, which makes approach play critical and scrambling more important than usual. My perfect golfer for this week is one that is accurate off the tee, great with their irons, and has a good short game. I’m also factoring in bermuda splits and previous success on Dye courses.