PGA DFS Report: WGC Mexico DraftKings Lineup Picks & Course Preview

Written By Jimmie on February 27, 2018

DraftKings Fantasy Golf Picks & Plays

Welcome back for another week of PGA DFS at DraftKings, FanDuel and FantasyDraft. It’s @DFSJimmie here to give you the full report on the WGC Mexico at Club de Golf Chapultepec. The tour heads south of the the border this week for the first WGC event of the year. These are fun events, and there is always a surprise lower-tier player who makes an appearance on the weekend leaderboard. Let’s get to it.

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The Course: 

The course this week is Mexico City’s Club de Golf Chapultepec. It rests at an elevation of 7,300 feet above sea level.

The thin air makes the balls travel anywhere from 10 percent further with wedges to 15 to 20 percent with the irons. This will create some problems for golfers and caddies alike around Chapultepec. The players will struggle to trust their swing and shot when the ball is going farther than normal. It can be tough to pull the trigger on a 200-yard shot with an 8 iron in your hand.

Now, the course itself is a very old European-style par 71 number. Constructed near the turn of the century, the course’s tight fairways are lined with tall, mature, and densely packed trees. The greens are Poa and decidedly complex, somewhat out of necessity to toughen up the short course. Despite the listed yardage of 7,300, Chapultepec plays a good bit shorter than that due to the altitude.

Since this course hosted only one PGA event, in 2017, we’re a little short on data.

Digging into the scorecard, we see Chapultepec played just a tick over par last year, but there are still plenty of scoring opportunities around here. The course, while tight, offers plenty off the tee for golfers who want to risk hitting the driver and try to roll one up on a short par 4. However, those gambling with the driver and missing on the wrong side will be stymied. Those missing the fairway altogether will be chipping out plenty. The dense trees, which are only yards off the first cut, are basically a one-stroke penalty.

The scoring opportunities for DK purposes can be found on the short par 4’s under 400 yards or on the super long par 5’s here. Those two groups of holes account for nearly 60 percent of the DK points scored and will be the sole focus of my scoring model this week.

To get an idea of what play styles suit tight courses with lots of elevation, I took results from the last seven years at Crans Sur Sierre in the Swiss Alps.

Well, driving distance is not crucial at all. Scoring average is the most important. Based on the chart above, par 5’s are not important at Cran Sierre, but they will be at Chapultepec. What we can take away is that shorter hitters can compete just fine. Players must hit greens in regulation and avoid bogeys to succeed at Cran Sierre. That compares really well with what we saw last year at Chapultepec. Distance matters very little since being on the correct side is crucial to scoring.

Finally, Montezuma’s Revenge is a real thing. Don’t be surprised if someone comes down with an illness.


Key Stats:

  1. Birdie or Better/DK Points

2. Strokes Gained Approach

3. Par 5 Scoring

4. Par 4 < 400 Scoring

5. Poa putters

PGA DFS Players:

Top Tier: $11.9K – $9.1K

I’m going to break down the top tier a bit differently this week since we have such a small field. The no-cut format is important to bear in mind. The bottom end of this field looking pretty rough compared to the mid tier will force DFS players into a decision for one top golfer above 10K or two between $9.1-9.8K.

Now, Tommy Fleetwood ($10K) could be a flex play. He can be paired with a player above him or with another player above 9K, say, Phil Mickelson ($9.3K). That will likely be the chalkiest lineup construction. It still allows you to grab a mid-8K golfer. Both these guys are chalky for a reason and have great opportunities to produce exceptional DK scoring results.

Now that we know what is likely going to be the most-owned stack in this range, we can access how we want to build if we are only doing a few lineups or multiple entries. For Cash, I very much recommend starting with Fleetwood/Phil.

Most of the guys in this range will likely flatten out in ownership. As for Rickie Fowler ($9.8K), don’t read too much into his missed cut last week. It just sets him up for a nice bounce back and projected low ownership on a course that suits him.

Justin Rose ($9.7K) and Sergio Garcia ($9.1K) will also make nice GPP plays. They’ll likely be under-owned for their relative ability to post a top 3 here. Garcia also owns a home in the Cran Sur Sierre area and routinely plays at elevation. Look for Sergio to show well once again this week. He could be really sneaky by the time lock rolls around as ownership tends to hyper-concentrate in the short field/no cut events.

Now, Rose is once again going under the radar after a mediocre performance and a couple weeks off. Before that, he was on fire, and Rose shows up in big events and knows how to stick around leaderboards on the biggest stages.

Dustin Johnson ($11.9K) is the favorite for sure and rightfully so. He putts superbly on Poa and is defending this week at a track where he easily missed 10 birdies last year. Johnson could leave his driver at home this week and still crush the field off the tee.

We have seen Justin Thomas ($11.5K) close out back-to-back wins before. Given the heart of his approach game right now, that result is definitely in play once again this week. Thomas is super aggressive and could absolutely light up Chapultepec if he is still dialed in. His only knock is his Poa putting, but it’s not enough to concern anyone.

Finally, Jordan Spieth ($10.5K) is quietly rounding into form and holds the course record here with a 63. With his approach game getting into form and his putting seemingly sorted, Spieth could even go a bit under-owned and make for some nice GPP exposure.

All in all, you can and should have confidence in any one of the players. All have their merits, and in a tournament like this (with a lot of variance and small sample sizes), it is literally anyone’s game from this top tier.


Mid Tier: $8.9K – $7.5K

Alex Noren ($8.8K) – Man, Alex Noren just keeps knocking at that door and putting himself in great position throughout the week, especially late on Sundays. Eventually, he will close out a win in North America, and this could be the week. Noren has been red hot and knows how to play at elevation with his experience at Cran Sur Sierre on the Euro Tour. I’m not concerned about his poor showing here last year. He is a much better ball-striker this year. Look for him to be super chalky at $8.8K for good reason. Differentiate elsewhere.

Rafa Cabrera-Bello ($8.6K) – Rafa Cabrera-Bello has been in great scoring position with his approach game recently, just missing some clutch par saves to keep himself in contention late into the weekends. This week, I won’t concern myself with his few missed pars so much as his scoring upside in this small field. He tends to post a couple of eagles and birdies streaks but finishes a spot or two back versus a guy who just makes a few birdies and a bunch of pars. Overall, Rafa has been hot lately and should produce some good DK results.

Xander Schauffele ($7.8K)  Xander Schauffele might be my favorite play this week. He’s an extreme value at $7.8K. Having already won on the big stage against all these top-notch competitors in a small field last year, X won’t be scared of the moment and is looking for another big win. Xander struggled a bit early in the season with his club changes. But he has improved his strokes gained approach every time out for the past five events. Meanwhile, he is a great putter, and his flat stick got hot at Riviera, which has the same greens as Chapultepec. X is my guy this week.

Others to consider: Chez Reavie, Tyrrell Hatton, Matt Fitzpatrick, Webb Simpson, Ross Fisher, Thomas Pieters


Value Tier: $7.4K and Lower

Joost Luiten ($7.3K) – Joost Luiten is fresh off a win, so we know he is in good form. We also know from looking at Cran Sur Sierre trends that Joost has performed very well at altitude over the years. Finishing 25th last year, he lost all his strokes on the green: -6.1 to be exact. That’s a huge number upon which he will surely improve with another year of experience under his belt.

Patton Kizzire ($7.4K) – Patton Kizzire got bit by the Tiger pairing last week, a tough spot for anyone, and on a brutal track to boot. I am going to jump back on Kizzire, who has great wedges and should be able to score well around this track. The only two-time winner this season, Kizzire should continue his solid run. He hasn’t seen the course before but has a strong approach game and is a great putter. I expect him to adapt quickly.

Others to consider: Hao Tong Li, Peter Uihlein, Dean Burmester, Bernd Wiesberger, Shubhankar Sharma


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James AKA @DFSJimmie has been grinding PGA & NFL DFS for the past three years, having gotten his start from The Fantasy Golf Degenerates. Previous PGA DFS columns include, "The Daily Contrarian" and "The Tee 2 Green" course breakdown series. In his spare time, he's built several of his own PGA analytical tools and can be found on the Bogey Free podcast frequently, and occasionally on The Pat Mayo Experience. In general, he just loves analyzing and talking about golf, and is excited to provide some tips to help you win at DFS PGA.

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