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PGA DFS: Travelers Championship 2023 (Members Writeup)

Travelers Championship has been an entertaining one the past two seasons with Xander Schauffele getting a WIN for us last season, and with Harris English getting a win in a dramatic fashion two years ago. Given the field that we have this week we could certainly see another fun week.


This week we have a ton of great value both in DFS and in the betting marketing. I think there is a decent chance a longshot bet will be in contention to win on Sunday, this feels like the best chance we will get for a 100/1 + outright bet to win this season.


The biggest issue that I have found with this week is that we have elite plays on the top end, and after that a lot of similar plays regardless of price. I have been able to make a lot of great lineups by going studs and duds.


This Weeks Video:


US Open Key Stats:

- Effective Scoring

- Ball Striking

- Total Driving

- Effective Birdie To Bogey Ratio / Bogey Avoidance (EB2B)

- Greens Gained

- Strokes Putting


One of the unique things about this week is that every winner has somewhat done it in different ways, it is more of a week in which we need to use the made cut data to make decisions of which key stats to be on. With that we see Total Driving, and Ball Striking pop up as key stats. We also see that golfers that are great in Bogey Avoidance, and Birdie to Bogey ratio are the ones that tend to play well. What was interesting is that Greens Gained, and Strokes Gained Putting popped in different years.


Course History:

Going forward Course History for an event with go by H1, H2, H3, and H4. For most weeks that will simply be 2022, 2021, 2020, and 2019 course history. (Last 4 years is course history is when the data is the most significant)


Last 4 years at the Travelers Championship


SLATE CONFIDENCE RATING: Yellow

This could end up being a sneaky good week just for the simple fact that we have a huge drop off in the quality of plays after the 10K range, and a lot of the golfers after that are arguably the same. That is what makes this week interesting and fun from a lineup standpoint. That is also what makes me worry as well, if one of the top end guys struggle that could end up hurting a lot. I bring that up because a lot of the golfers that we want to be on this week are golfers that finished well or were in contention at the US Open. How will those golfers respond after the grind of the US Open.


Weather:

We have some rain in the forecast this week, which maybe will make the greens softer and more respective, other than that the weather looks promising for predictability.


US Open Betting Picks

First Round Leader

AM Tee Times

I will be targeting AM Tee Times that rank out top 7 for FRL betting using the NineToFive betting sheet until further notice (basically if weather tells us not to)


Outright Bets:

Cantlay

Fleetwood

Putnam


3 Ball Bets:

Available by clicking on either the Ownership Leverage, or Props page on NineToFive, then click on the 3 person Icon.



Travelers Championship Core Plays + Outright Bets

Core Plays are the golfers that I am prioritizing the most.


Takeaways:

I mentioned how this field was top heavy, and it is, and I see no real reason to get cute with plays this week. The goal will be to fit at least two of these golfers into a main build.


The first one that I like the most is going to be the player that the NineToFive Model likes the most, Patrick Cantlay.


Cantlay has played extremely well at this course, with 4 straight top 20 finishes. He also is in some of the best form in the field. Really there is no reason not to LOVE Cantlay this week. The best part about him as a a play is that he is the cheapest of the elite plays. (Sorry Hovland)


From there it shouldn't really matter who you land I, I personally like Xander the most, but just how will he handle the disappointing US Open, given that he always seems to bring it mentally you don't expect him to struggle, but if there was ever a let down spot this would be it. Granted he is the defending champ so I do expect him to be mentally motivated to play well again this week.


I think we can somewhat naturally end up on Cantlay, and then one of Xander and/or Hovland. Hovland, is basically just a cheaper slightly worse version as Patrick Cantlay this week. Hovland had an off week last week at the US Open and still finished top 20. He is someone who if he is on his game can win this week, if he is a little bit off he will probably still gives us a top 25 finish.


High Exposure

Takeaways:

Hideki is coming in extremely cheap again this week, and I just think it is due to his lack of upside recently. He has made 8 straight cuts in a row with all of those finishing being top 35 or better. That screams consistency to me. The only issue with Hideki this week is that he does not have course history over the past 4 years.


Tommy Fleetwood is looking like the last best stud that we can pay up for this week. Fleetwood has played well at this track in the past, making 2 cuts with one of them being a top 15 finish. He has had back to back weeks of top 5 finishes, and last week it was a matter of one bad round. I know its Tommy Fleetwood but a victory this week would not be shocking.


Henley is a golfer that is typically a little bit too hit or miss to truly trust each week, and I do believe that is the case this week as well, but this might be a play we are forced into making due to price. He has had better results each time he has played this course making the cut in his last two starts here. He has made 3 straight cuts with all of those being top 20 or better finishes. Overall he is looking like a pretty extreme value this week.


Eckroat is a play that is popping up as a top 20 play this week, and if you look at his key metric ranks none of them really pop, he is just a strong play across the board. I bring this up because I field like this is a great example of how much the field strength really drops off fast, and we get a lot of similar plays and cheap prices.


Andrew Putnam is probably my favorite play this week, and I just do not get the pricing for him. He has one missed cut recently, and that was coming in off of an event in which he had to WD. He ended up finishing one stroke off the cut line in that event, and he had no business playing that well that week. If you takeout those two events he has made 7 straight cuts and has had two top 10 finishes in that span. On top of that he has made 3 straight cuts at this tournament, including a top 15 finish. The data is slightly knocking him compared to some other plays like Eckroat, but I like him much more than Ekcroat.


Mid Exposure

Takeaways:

Low key I love all the golfers in this range, and I feel like I could have made them all High Exposure Plays that is how close I view these plays this week.


English is a golfer that clearly likes this track winning it two years ago, and finishing top 20 last year. English was a golfer that seemed like he was trending back to that old 2021 form, and we may finally be getting that again at the perfect time this week. English has made 3 straight cuts now, and two of them were great finishes going: 8th, and 15th place finish. These both would be great results again this week, and given the course history it might not be too far fetched.


Jaeger is a play that has been extremely consistent lately making the cut in his past 6 starts now. I feel like that is Jaeger as a play, a golfer that gives us a good chance a a made cut, and if he does a good chance at a top 30ish finish.


Nate Lashley has been playing some great golf lately, and if you take away one bad round in his event two starts ago he would be on a made cut streak of at least 4 straight events, in those events he has been able to finish top 30 or better. That is what he did at this course last year finishing 25th. Lashley is a strong stat fit as well ranking 21st in the field. It would not be shocking to get a good week at of Lashley this week.


The only big worry I have with Hubbard besides not being a great stat fit is that he could end up being higher owned than he should be this week. But I get why people like him. He has been playing great golf recently, and has made three straight cuts at this tournament. Someone I like we could look at this week.


Low Exposure

Risk/Reward Plays, Plays to get a made cut, Shoulder Shrug Plays, or Fomo Plays


Takeaways:

My biggest issue with Adam Scott this week is just the price for a guy that burnt us bad last week. The worry with him last week is the same worry that we have this week, stat fit. Besides that he is a strong play though. Still someone we should be looking at, but now becomes more difficult to trust in cash.


Tom Kim is an elite stat fit this week at this price, ranking as the 11th best stat fit in the field. The issue with Kim is that prior to last week he was struggling. I feel like we could find safer plays this week.


Brian Harman has elite course history finishing top 10 3 out of the past 4 years. That is something that we cannot ignore. Worth a look in GPPs for sure.


Detry is a golfer that has now made 4 straight cuts in a row, and overall has the 13th best form in the field. Again at this price that is something I do not think we should ignore.


From there we get Lee Hodges who has been sneaky good lately, making the cut in his past 4 starts, with the last 3 being top 30 finishes. Hodges finished top 25 at this event last year.


Andrew Novak is a quality value play this week. He made the cut at this event last year, and has now made 4 straight cuts on the PGA Tour including a top 10 finish in his last start. He is not an elite play by any means but should be a good enough play to give us a made cut.


Lower Exposure

Takeaways:

I feel like this range has a lot of upside, and low owned upside at that.


Si Woo Kim is a golfer that can always randomly pop like he had done at this track in 2019 finishing 11th. Besides that however he had struggle at this event, given that he has been in solid recent form, and is a good start fit I can look past that a little. A good shoulder shrug play.


Aaron Rai has been a little bit too hit or miss, which is why I have him this low. I have Justin Suh this low because he is a little too consistent, playing solid golf but not doing enough to consider as a GPP upside play.


Dylan Wu missed the cut at this event last year, and has two missed cuts in his last 4 starts on tour. If we look at his long term form it has been pretty solid however. He is also a top 20 stat fit, with strong long-term form. At this price you could easily make a studs and duds build.


Kevin Yu might not have that much data going into the PGA Tour database just yet but the data that is in there on him LOVEs Kevin Yu this week as he is the 9th best stat fit in the field. He has played surprisingly well on the PGA Tour as well. The price this week and the odds that we are getting are due to him having to have surgery in the middle of February, and this will be the first week he has played since then. I am not saying he is a lock to make the cut or be in contention but this does seem to be a bad price both in DFS and Odds wise. Heck you can get him at +200 odds to make the cut.


Player Pool

Player Pool Breakdown:

Player Pool is rank in order of how I am prioritizing a golfer as a play this week.


 

CASH AND GPP PLAYS:

(Finalized on Tuesday Member Writeup)

Cash Play: Highest Likelihood to make the cut.

GPP Play: Reduced Likelihood to make the cut, but if they do they have a high likelihood to exceed their salary.


Cash: Core + Fleetwood, Hideki, Putnam, English, Hubbard, Lashley, and Jaeger

GPP: Henley, Eckroat, Tom Kim


SAMPLE LINEUP:

*This is a sample lineup for you to use as a reference tool. This is typically the first look lineup that I get onto for the week. Most of the time my main lineup will be adjusted throughout the week as I do a deeper dive. (Finalized on Tuesday Member Writeup


First build is to show you how close I was to a build that I would have really liked this week. Just $100 off, the issue is that we have no natural great pivots. Sure maybe go Lashley instead of Putnam or go Hodges but sucks to be that close to a good build and not be able to submit it.


I was able to make a slight adjustment as you will see below. Don't love having to go from Fleetwood to Hideki but hopefully it won't hurt. The third lineup in an example of how to make fitting in 3 studs.






Ownership Leverage

Taking a look at the players that are under-owned, and too high owned. Talking about why. \

*Tool Update Alert* New to 925s Ownership Leverage Tool - Return Value for Finishing Position: Measuring where a golfer needs to finish to return value based on their current ownership projection at their price point. (Comes out Tuesday Evening)


Over Owned / Under Owned:

We are seeing some of the plays I liked come in over owned like Hubbard, Harman and Ekcroat. I do feel like we have strong enough pivots to players around them. One being Stephan Jaeger who is coming in currently very low owned.










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