A very strong field of 120 players is on hand this week at Muirfield Village in the Columbus, Ohio suburb of Dublin. This is Jack Nicklaus’s event and his signature course and we have a good set of players to pick from this week for daily fantasy purposes.
As always, our focus in this particular DFS write-up is to find those value guys that you can use to save some money and pair with the stronger contenders in the field. This is an event where guys like William McGirt, David Lingmerth, Carl Pettersson, and Bart Bryant have won, but also guys like Bryson DeChambeau, Tiger Woods, Justin Rose, Matt Kuchar, and Steve Stricker.
Salaries are from DraftKings.
Jason Kokrak ($8,200) – After a much needed break, Jason Kokrak is back on tour. He skipped last week’s event at Colonial and will tee it up here at Muirfield Village. Kokrak has been a safe bet all year with 15 events and 15 made cuts, so he’s at least had the chance to accumulate points over all 72 holes. Kokrak went into the PGA Championship at Bethpage Black with some strong numbers, as he was top 40 in driving distance, par 4 scoring, strokes gained tee to green, off the tee, and on approach, and in birdie or better and bogey avoidance. He was in the top 25 on a tough track there at Bethpage. With two weeks off now in the month of May, I have to think we see another resurgence from him. He’s struggled at this course, but this is the best form he’s been in coming here.
Matthew Fitzpatrick ($7,600) – Call this one a hunch. Muirfield Village Golf Club got its name from Muirfield, Scotland, which is where Jack Nicklaus won the first of his three Open Championships. Fitzpatrick spends a lot of his time on the European Tour and has to feel very comfortable with those types of courses. That’s not to say Muirfield mirrors a lot of links course, but there are elements. He hasn’t been in great form by any means, but maybe he’ll get a little bit of beginner’s luck this weekend. He played really well in the Arnold Palmer Invitational a couple months back.
Luke List ($7,600) – Luke List didn’t qualify for the Charles Schwab Challenge last week at Colonial, but he’s on hand this week for the Memorial Tournament. List was sixth at the PGA Championship, but didn’t have a chance to build off of his success in that tournament. He was actually second at Bethpage Black in strokes gained putting. That’s a big deal because he went into that tournament third in driving distance, eighth in par 5 scoring, 21st in strokes gained tee to green, 10th in strokes gained off the tee, and 48th in strokes gained approach. The part of his game that had been lagging was his putting. Let’s see if he can find the range with the flatstick again this week.
Marc Leishman ($8,000) – Usually we find some cheaper guys to really save some money on that salary cap, but the bottom of this field is really tough to navigate. Marc Leishman is a solid addition to your lineup this week. Leishman has three top-15 finishes at Muirfield Village in his last four starts. He missed the cut at the PGA Championship and took last week off, so he should come in fresh. That’s important because he has battled some back discomfort this season. Leishman has been solid and steady and those are good attributes at this course because it can go awry in a hurry. The winning score has been 15-under or lower since 2011, so this is an event about being patient and getting birdie on the par 5s and saving par on the par 3s. Leishman’s game fits well here.
Cameron Smith ($7,000) – Cameron Smith hasn’t put up a ton of low numbers this year, but he’s made 12 of 14 cuts and excels around the putting surface. He went into the PGA Championship 29th in par 4 scoring because he was 44th in strokes gained approach, 21st in strokes gained around the green, and 22nd in strokes gained putting. All of those things are important here at Muirfield Village with a lot of protected greens. He hasn’t had much success here in his starts and hasn’t broken 70 the last two years, but with super soft greens and a penchant for making putts, you could do a lot worse at this price point.