The U.S. Open Championship

We got one last tune up before the 3rd Major of the year. That was a bit of a strange tournament. Day one there were some nice scores put up. It slowed down a little day 2. One of the crazy parts was the cut sweat for -1. In the end it was -2 and it left a lot disappointed (including me). Problem with -1 was there would have been a huge MDF. In the end Rory McIlroy ran away with it and won by 7 strokes after a 61 on Sunday. He even paid homage to the Canadians by wearing a Raptors jersey. And of course there was his answer to a question about wanting to play Pebble tomorrow and he said no I’ll be hungover. Congrats to those who prospered! I didn’t do too well and took on the PGA forum and went 10-19.

We now get the U.S. Open Championship at Pebble Beach Golf Links in Monterey Peninsula, California. This is a par 71 course that measures at ~ 7,075 yards. The distance seems short but do not let that fool you. The driver will stay in the bag for a majority of the time. You want to be accurate here as the rough is penal and the USGA is shooting for ~ 0.5 stroke loss for hitting from the rough. We will see how this thing plays out. So let’s take a look and see what we got.

Key Stats
I’m going to be honest here, I typically let Noto do the grunt work and start with his stats from the PGA First Look here at RG (here). I had some of his stats to use down and have added a few myself. It might keep seeming like I’m using similar stats every week (which I kind of am) but I feel these are just some of the more important ones and help with “scoring” the most.
1. SG (a)
2. SG (atg)
3. bogey avoidance
4. SG (p)
5. SG (ott) – This one I wasn’t exactly sure I agreed on but kept it anyway. The reason being is because most of the time the driver will be out of their hand and they will be hitting long irons, 3 woods, hybrids, or whatever it may be besides driver so I found it less relevant.
6. GIR – You are in trouble if you miss the greens here. These are some of the smallest on the tour and they are not flat. Missing greens lead to bogeys or worse.
7. SG (t2g) – I used this stat because I wanted to encompass every shot from tee to green and think this is one of the better measures for accuracy. You don’t need the driver as much here so it is more about where you play from than how long you hit it. There is going to be some making up to do so I think this stat helps us see who can recover better than others.
8. scrambling – I think this one is self-explanatory but for the times you miss, you are going to need to recover well
9. par 3 scoring – This is a stat to use because there are 4 par 3s here
10. par 4 scoring – I just used this because there are the most par 4s on the course and some of them will be the birdie holes as there are only 3 par 5s.

All my stats are from 2019 this time. Also Mike’s (smartgolfbets) spreadsheet is here this week.

The Plays
I’m going to do this a little bit differently this time. Since pretty much “everybody” is in play here I’m going to give my main plays for each “category” of mine.

- The Stats Plays
DJ (11.3K) – 16th is SG (a), 3rd in bogey avoidance, 14th in SG (p), 3rd in SG (ott), 13th in GIR, 4th in SG (t2g), 15th in scrambling, and 2nd in par 4 scoring
Cantlay (10K) – 10th in SG (a), 13th in SG (atg), 1st in bogey avoidance, 29th in SG (p), 14th in SG (ott), 2nd in SG (t2g), 1st in scrambling, and 1st in par 4 scoring
Rose (9.7K) – 22nd in SG (a), 28th in bogey avoidance, 11th in SG (p), 27th in SG (t2g), 30th in scrambling, 10th in par 3 scoring, and 17th in par 4 scoring

- The Course History Plays
Day (9.1K) – top 6s in 13, 15, 17, 18, and 19 with 1 MC in 2014. 8th in SG (p), 9th in SG (ott), 10th in par 3 scoring, and 17th in par 4 scoring
Phil (8.2K) – 1st this year and 2nd last, 2 in 16, and 1st in 2012. 17th in par 4 scoring. Word of caution this is strictly a course history play as Phil is in bad form right now
Spieth (10.3K) – 1st in 17, 7th in 15, and 4th in 14. 3rd in SG (p) and 10th in par 3 scoring
Walker (7K) – pre 2015 so tread carefully (1st, 3rd, and 2 9ths). 31st in SG (atg) and 34th scrambling

- Recent Form Plays
Rory (10.5K) – just came off a win last week. 5th in SG (a), 7th in bogey avoidance, 1st in SG (ott), 9th in GIR, 1st in SG (t2g), 2nd in par 3 scoring, and 6th in par 4 scoring
Brooks (11.6K) – It’s a major and he’s Brooks Effing Koepka! If you didn’t know he won the last one. 11th in SG (a), 26th in bogey avoidance, 19th in SG (ott), 10th in GIR, 12th in SG (t2g), and 2nd in par 4 scoring
Scott (8.6K) – coming off a 2nd and an 8th. 15th in SG (a), 17th in SG (atg), 21st in SG (p), 23rd in SG (ott), 7th in SG (t2g), and 24th in scrambling
Kaymer (7.4K) – coming off a 3rd and has some course history here

- Value Plays
Baddeley (6.7K) – 6th in SG (atg), 9th in bogey avoidance, 10th in SG (p), 4th in scrambling, 22nd in par 3 scoring, and 9th in par 4 scoring.
Webb (7.7K) – 20th in SG (a), 12th in SG (atg), 5th in bogey avoidance, 18th in SG (t2g), 2nd in scrambling, and 2nd in par 4 scoring
Furyk (7.2K) – 14th in SG (a), 6th in bogey avoidance, 7th in GIR, 25th in SG (t2g), 8th in scrambling, and 9th in par 4 scoring

The Possible Under Owned
Rahm (9.2K)
Sneds (7.6K)
Poulter (7.5K)
Berger (7.1K)

Taking a Stab
Hovland (6.7K)
Harding (6.9K)
Reavie (6.9K)
Taylor (6.5K)

Fleetwood (8.9K) – Just have to draw a line somewhere
Mats (8.8K) – You know the drill, you almost convinced me last time you played but pass
Finau (8.4K) – This hasn’t been the Tony Finau us DFSer’s grew to know and love. I need the birds here and lately it’s been more bogeys and I see that continuing
DeCham (8.1K) – He has just looked awful
Woodland (8K) – This one scares me too but I view Woodland as someone who overpowers courses and this isn’t the one for that

Let me know what you think! Otherwise good luck and make that money. Can it be Thursday yet?! And can this $33 FWGC qualifier ticket do me any good?

About the Author


  • al3b3d3v

    love the recency bias on DeChambeau – top 10 finish
    phil’s birthday this sunday – narrative play
    rory is hungover – narrative play

    good luck!

  • hautalak

    Yeah DeCham should come in really low IMO but he’s also pretty cheap.
    Yeah my Phil play is a CH one but if Tiger won the Masters it only makes sense Phill gets the Slam!!!
    Rory loves drinking haha
    And now I’ve been reading nobody giving Koepka respect so will have to add a few more shares of him. Angry Koepka is a good thing I think.

    Good luck to you as well!

  • panters

    Nice job as usual Kyle!

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