The Palmetto Championship 2021 Fantasy Golf Preview

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Palmetto Championship Cover

Last Week First: the Memorial in Review

Wow, what a rollercoaster of a week! The term unlucky seems the biggest understatement ever when you analyze our picks from last week. First of all, the weather played havoc with the performance of four of our picks, who began the first round bang smack in the middle of it. This put an end to their chances of having a good championship as they failed to recover. This meant that Bradley, Kizzire, Rodgers, and Werenski all missed the cut.

However, our two leading picks still flew the flag for us, and at the end of the third round, we had the tournament leader in John Rahm and the player in second place, Collin Morikawa. But then disaster struck. Rahm tested positive for Covid-19 and was forced to withdraw from the competition, surrendering a six-shot lead which would have undoubtedly led to victory. These are the perils of fantasy betting life. Though this year more randomly perilous than most.

Pat Perez is one of the tour golfers in our recommended picks list this week for Congaree.

Nevertheless, this left Morikawa in the lead heading into the final round. He started poorly, and it was a nip and tuck between him and Cantley throughout the final round. Morikawa looked like he would see us over the line at one point, but it wasn’t to be, and Cantley forced a playoff. And yes, after the weekend we had, you can guess what the outcome was….Man, what a week of ifs, buts, and maybe’s! Regardless, the analysis of the play proves we are on the right track, and a win seems sure to come our way soon.

This week brings us to the Congaree Golf Club in South Carolina for the Palmetto Championship. Let’s begin as always by looking at the history of the tournament as we start to build this week’s BeerLife Sports profile.

We could leave this section blank as there is no history to go on here. The Palmetto Championship is stepping in to replace the RBC Canadian Open this week due to travel restrictions enforced by the Covid-19 pandemic. However, we can grab some pointers by looking at the other two tournaments held in South Carolina this year — the RBC Heritage and the PGA Championship.

RBC Heritage

  1. S. Cink (PGA finish T30th)
  2. H. Varner III (PGA finish T49th)
  3. E. Grillo (PGA finish T38th)
  4. M. McNealy (PGA finish MC)
  5. C. Connors (PGA finish T17th)
  6. M. Fitzpatrick (PGA finish T23rd)

PGA Championship

  1. P. Mickelson (Heritage finish DNP)
  2. L. Oosthuizen (Heritage finish DNP)
  3. B. Koepka (Heritage finish DNP)
  4. S. Lowry (Heritage finish T9th)
  5. P. Harrington (Heritage finish DNP)
  6. H. Higgs (Heritage finish T59th)
  7. P. Casey (Heritage finish MC)

The Course at Congaree Golf Club

The rather breathtaking Congaree Golf Club in South Carolina

This is a par 71 golf course that measures 7,655 yards and is sure to test the biggest hitters on tour. It was designed by Tom Fazio, who has been the architect behind over 200 golf courses across the United States. It was fashioned to replicate the courses of Australia, which have an abundance of sand and water. However, it has a similar feel to the courses of South Carolina, which is why we looked at the two played in the area this year. With next to no rough on the course, it can favor those who like to play aggressively and take their shots on.

Under these conditions, the long hitters will be able to drive the ball for miles. However, there are many run-offs on the greens, which makes ball control a must.

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It looks like it could be a very wet, hot, sticky championship, and we will most certainly have to factor this in when building our profile as fair-weather players won’t fair well here!

The History of the Palmetto Championship

The Field at Palmetto

The field looks competitive for this one, and there is a decent turnout, especially for a tournament that will be largely unknown to everyone. The biggest name in the field is South Carolina’s own Dustin Johnson. DJ is a previous winner of the Canadian Open and therefore is accustomed to doing well at this time of year.

Brooks Koepka returns to action following a couple of weeks off as he makes his first start since his second-place finish at the PGA Championship. Other big names in the field include Jason Dufner, Danny Willett, and Padraig Harrington.

Key Golfer Stats

We run each player in the field through our Beerlife profile analysis to come up with our selections. This are what we are looking for this week:

Players that have done well at the Heritage and PGA Championship – This will give us the best course knowledge possible.
We have already listed the top finishers at each tournament but unfortunately those players are not present here this week. Therefore, we will have to delve into the leaderboards in more depth. The two main players to look at would be:

Brooks Koepka – 2nd at the PGA Championship
Byeoung-Hun An – Placed inside the top 50 at the PGA Championship

Golfers who can hit the ball a long way – With such a long course and a few of the par fours being reachable in one, we need to find some big hitters.

Driving Distance Average
Bryson DeChambeau – 322.7
Rory McIlroy – 318.6
Cameron Champ – 317.7
Wyndham Clark – 315.6
Will Gordon – 314.6

We want to find players who get the ball closest to the hole on average – Many of the greens have run offs all over them so players need to be able to stop the ball on the green.

Proximity To Hole
Fabian Gomez – 5’10”
Hank Lebioda – 6’1”
Byeong-Hun An – 6’3”
Vaughn Taylor – 6’4”
Pat Perez – 6’5”

Lastly players that have great success playing in adverse weather conditions – With the weather looking bad all four days we need players that can play in these conditions.

Performances playing in adverse weather since 2014 (Based on final standings)
Rory McIlroy
Henrik Stenson
Brooks Koepka
Jason Day
Paul Casey

Fantasy Golf Draft Picks

After looking at the above data and running the field through our BeerLife Sports profile builder, we have selected the following picks. When building your team and picking your players, one thing to note is with the US Open only a week away, how many players will be using this tournament purely to fine-tune their game for next week, and how many will be going all out for victory?

Must-Have Players – These players may cost a bit more bit trying to find them into your team is vital.

Brooks Koepka
Odds to win +900
Draft Kings $11,100
FanDuel $12,100
Koepka is our leading pick this week as his form this season is fantastic. He won the Phoenix Open and has had a couple of runner-up placings. One of which was in the PGA Championship, which, as we know, was played on a course not too dissimilar to this one. He handles all kinds of weather conditions, and he hasn’t played much golf recently, which means two things – he will be fresh, and he will be keen for a good workout before the US Open.

The Steady Eddies – These are middle-of-the-road players who should give a solid account of themselves.

Pat Perez
Odds to win +8000
Draft Kings $7,700
FanDuel $9,000
Pat Perez is a solid player that often gets close to the cup with his approach play. He has made his previous five cuts in a row, and while he probably doesn’t offer the most value, his knowledge of desert-like courses, having grown up in Arizona, will be invaluable.
Byeong-Hun An
Odds to win +12500
Draft Kings $7,400
FanDuel $8,600
The South Korean offers decent value, especially from an outright betting perspective. He’s not had the most consistent season, but he can get the ball close to the hole regularly, and on the odd occasions he does miss the green, he has a superb sand game to rely on.
Vaughn Taylor
Odds to win +14000
Draft Kings $7,400
FanDuel $8,400
The experienced Taylor has had a relatively poor season, but he reminded everyone what he could do in the poor weather conditions last week at the Memorial. He is an accurate golf player when on form, and he showed glimpses of that last week.

Long Shots – These guys will offer the most value as they won’t cost you much but could return a tidy score.

Hank Lebioda
Odds to win +15000
Draft Kings $6,900
FanDuel $8,200
Hank Lebioda seems to have put his poor run of form well and truly behind him as he has two top 20 finishes in the last three weeks, and therefore, he offers excellent value here. He has the approach game to trouble this course.
Will Gordon
Odds to win +25000
Draft Kings $6,700
FanDuel $7,400
Gordon’s form hardly inspires much confidence, but he has the long game to take on this course, and we had to choose at least one big hitter. He also ranks inside the top 20 for Eagles this season which is a testament to his long game.
Fabian Gomez
Odds to win +50000
Draft Kings $6,300
FanDuel $7,000
The Argentinian player won’t be on many people’s lips, but he has a fantastic short game that is hard to ignore. He’s not a big hitter, which is a slight concern, but if he can get in a position to target the pins from the tee, he could be dangerous.

I’d love to know your picks for the upcoming Palmetto Championship. We’ve been pretty good with our picks, but what are you dark horses, hot picks, and how did you get there? Hit me up in the comments below.

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