In the hoopla that was Tiger’s return at Pebble Beach, most people missed a quiet lefty for the first 3 days of the tournament until he opened with a phenomenal front 9 on Sunday and trounced Wi and Woods en route to his 40th tour victory and a 40 point Sunday (20 bonus for winning, 20 for lowest round).
Most of our fantasy golf group (which you’re welcome to join) had Mickelson rostered and had a great week because of it. I played the role of Charlie Wi with the lead going into the final round before fading while watching Ty Webb take the high-point scorer in our group. He sits second in overall points behind Squatney Leather with MT Cup, Boss of the Moss, Winealot bo, Chiefs, and then me in pursuit. My entry fared decently overall as I moved from 76th percentile up to the 85th with 166 points. I’d already used Phil for last week’s inconsistent tournament in Phoenix and picked a bad week to give him a break. He’s back in action this week as the tour shifts to Riviera.
Riviera Country Club is Pacific Palisades, CA which is inside the city limits of LA. It’s a great venue and a good event and many of the world’s best make their debut this week. Phil’s got a great history at this event as well winning in 2008 and 2009. He’s one of my picks for this week since most people will jump on him, and the probability of him doing well once again this week is to high for me to gamble with someone else. Here’s the rest of my picks:
Phil Mickelson-Not only is he fresh off a great final round and a big win last week, he’s the leading money leader at Riviera. Fantastic recent form and history of success in this even make him too good to pass up even though he’ll be a very popular choice this weekend.
Adam Scott-Scott’s belly-putter may be painful to watch, but he’s got a good history here and will look to make a splash in his stateside debut. He’s played well in Australia recently and at the end of last year’s tour.
Dustin Johnson-Johnson finished T5 last week and has 2 top 10’s here in the past 3 years. It looks like DJ’s game is back and I think he’s got a great shot at winning this week if he can manage the course well.
Jason Day-Day hasn’t played in the states this year but is coming off a t2 in Qatar and has played light’s out over the last year. His course record here is rough (2 MCs) but I see him turning that around this week. It’s a risky play with this being his debut and his past troubles, but I love Day’s game and think he’ll be on the leaderboard come Sunday.
Rickie Fowler- Fowler missed the cut last weekend at Pebble but had a T35 and T5 in the last 2 years of this event. He’ll definitely be a crowd favorite in LA (he was born in nearby Anaheim) and aside from an ugly 2nd round last week where he shot a 76 has been at or under par in every round on tour. If he keeps that up at Riviera he’ll be in good shape.
Jimmy Walker- Walker t4 last year here and has 2 top 10’s in his last 3 starts. A little-known name, but the former Baylor Bear knows his way around Riviera.
Aaron Baddeley-Baddeley won here last year and played well last week finishing 4. He’s played here 9 times and made the cut every time. He’s dependable at Riviera and he’s defending champion. Badds makes a good play for your C-list choice.
Padraig Harrington-Harrington finished t7 last week at Pebble and has a long history at Riviera incluting 2 top 10’s with a t3 in 2008 and a 7th in 2009.