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Byron Nelson: Garcia Headlines FRL Selections


There are many unknowns heading into this week’s AT&T Byron Nelson. TPC Craig Ranch will probably be making its PGA Tour debut as gamers head to the Tom Weiskopf design simply outdoors of Dallas, Texas. TPC Craig Ranch just isn’t new to the skilled golf world because it hosted the 2008 Nationwide Tour Championship and the 2012 Web.Com Tour Championship. If you’re confused, they’re the identical occasion in what’s at the moment the Korn Ferry Tour.

On paper, it seems to be the kind of course the place bombers may thrive. Measuring simply north of seven,400 yards, this par-72 boasts extensive touchdown areas off the tee. From there, gamers will hit into giant greens surrounded by bunkers and run-off areas. To me, this screams birdie fest and it wouldn’t come as a shock if gamers reap the benefits of a doubtlessly simpler set-up, barring any windy circumstances.

With no course historical past to depend on, we’re stepping into a bit blind. When weeks like this come up, I wish to hold issues easy and attempt to not overcomplicate the method. We’ll be trying to goal these gamers who’ve loads of firepower, are strong ball-strikers, and have the power to knock in a putt or two. Short, candy, to the purpose.

Weather at all times has the potential to wreak havoc on first-round chief picks, however much more so once we are discussing Texas. Having mentioned that, there doesn’t seem like a discernible benefit between the morning wave and the afternoon wave as of now. Typically, winds are calmer within the morning hours and have a tendency to freshen because the day progresses. Without any uptick of the wind within the forecast, we’ll lean with the morning wave, however not utterly dismiss the afternoon gamers.

The oddsmakers at PointsBet Sportsbook have priced the first-round chief market. With Dustin Johnson withdrawing, Bryson DeChambeau leads the way in which by himself at +1800. The final winner in Texas, Jordan Spieth, follows intently at +2200 and Dallas-area resident, Will Zalatoris, is at +4000.

Odds to Lead After the First Round (by way of PointsBet):

+1800: Bryson DeChambeau

+2000: Jon Rahm

+2200: Jordan Spieth

+2800: Daniel Berger, Hideki Matusyama

+3300: Brooks Koepka, Matthew Fitzpatrick, Scottie Scheffler

+4000: Marc Leishman, Sergio Garcia, Si Woo Kim, Will Zalatoris

+5000: Cameron Champ, Charl Schwartzel, Keith Mitchell, Ryan Palmer, Sam Burns, Talor Gooch

To Lead After the First Round (Odds by way of PointsBet):

Sergio Garcia (+4000):

After what seemed to be a resurgence in type on the Players Championship, Garcia dropped off the face of the map shortly. A missed minimize at The Masters was adopted up with one other missed minimize on the RBC Heritage, two programs the place he had skilled previous success. With a while off since then, I imagine Garcia can have discovered his ball-striking troubles and return to his normal-self in Dallas.

Last time Garcia missed consecutive cuts, he ended up successful the Sanderson Farms Championship in his subsequent begin. Obviously, it will be a stretch to imagine he’ll flip that coincidence right into a development, nevertheless it goes to point out how resilient the fiery Spaniard is. Normally, very dependable tee-to-green, what has me enthusiastic about Garcia is definitely his placing.

First-rounds have been very type to Garcia over the previous couple of months. For the season, he ranks T-31 in Round 1 scoring common, coming in at precisely 70.00. That may be attributed to his cooperative putter on Thursdays. At the Players Championship, when he blitzed the sphere, he gained almost four-strokes on the greens. He was optimistic on the greens as properly at Harbour Town. He usually does his finest work on bent grass, which now we have this week, so if the putter will get going, he may have an opportunity to submit a low one.

Charl Schwartzel (+5000):

From one Masters champion to a different. This time we’ll be going with the South African who has flashed some type over his previous few begins. After a playoff loss alongside Louis Oosthuizen on the Zurich Classic, Schwartzel has captured some momentum. He completed T-21 on the Valspar Championship and a good T-14 final week on the Wells Fargo Championship. Both of those high quality finishes had been on the shoulders of fantastic tee-to-green numbers, particularly from his irons.

If Schwartzel carries his tee-to-green prowess to Dallas, his week and extra importantly his first-round will come right down to placing. It’s at all times scary hoping for a poor putter to show in a strong spherical on the greens, however I imagine Schwartzel is able to doing so.

A change from Bermuda grass over to bent grass must be a welcome sight for Schwartzel. Outside of Augusta, we haven’t actually seen a lot of the South African on bent grass. The final notable time was all the way in which again in the summertime of 2020 on the 3M Open when he completed in a tie for third and gained four-strokes placing.

Keith Mitchell (+5000):

I’m of the assumption that TPC Craig Ranch ought to match Mitchell’s sport like a glove. Coming off a incredible week at Quail Hollow, Mitchell’s driving prowess ought to set him up for achievement at TPC Craig Ranch. Throughout the week, gamers have been quoted saying how the course and moist circumstances ought to match longer hitters off-the-tee.

Enter Mitchell. The driving show that he has placed on during the last month has been off the charts. Brandt Snedeker informed Jim Nantz that if not for Snedeker’s poor play, Mitchell may have received the Zurich Classic by himself. The prepare continued to steam roll into Charlotte and I totally it anticipate to realize velocity heading into Dallas.

Mitchell confirmed final Thursday at Quail Hollow that he’s in a position to shake off a poor ultimate spherical and refocus heading into a brand new week. The ultimate spherical in Tampa was dangerous as a result of defective putter. Last Sunday on the Wells Fargo could go away a sense of disappointment, however I imagine he’ll as soon as once more refocus and begin quick on the AT&T Byron Nelson.

Sebastian Munoz (+10000):

Truth be informed, Munoz has been struggling as of late, however a return to Texas could also be precisely what the physician ordered. He completed contained in the top-10 on the Valero Texas Open final month, thanks partly to a fast begin in Round 1. He opened that event with a 4-under 68, and whereas it’s at all times daring to pick out Munoz away from Bermuda greens, this week could warrant it.

Having gone to high school at University of North Texas, lower than 40 miles away from TPC Craig Ranch, there’s a excessive likelihood Munoz has some familiarity with this course. I’m usually not one to purchase into such narratives, however for a participant who ranks sixty fifth in Round 1 scoring common, I’ll.

Since TPC Craig Ranch boasts such extensive fairways and enormous greens, backing a participant who’s a strong putter and a streaky ball-striker, is probably not the worst technique. Munoz could discover himself on greens in regulation extra usually than typical. If that’s the case, he’s the kind of participant who can get scorching, actual quick along with his putter and cost up the Round 1 leaderboard.

Sepp Straka (+10000):

The large Austrian has quietly been stringing collectively high quality first-round performances. Last week on the Wells Fargo, Straka was climbing up the Thursday leaderboard earlier than a number of errors derailed him late in his spherical. Still, he was in a position to card a 2-under 69 and higher his Round 1 scoring common of 70.05, good for thirty sixth on the PGA Tour.

He’s been actually sturdy off-the-tee as of late, which was a deciding think about choosing Straka. As for his strategy numbers, at first-glance they appear poor, however I made a decision to dive deeper. I ought to preface, proximity numbers ought to at all times be used along side some type of ball-striking quantity, because the statistic alone is extraordinarily deceptive for my part.

That being mentioned, his long-term strategy numbers are there and from 200+ yards particularly, Straka has been unbelievable. Over his final 4 measured occasions, he’s averaging 12 toes nearer than his rivals from long-range. With three of the par-3’s measuring over 200 yards and the par-5’s all being reachable, competence from that distance might be important on Thursday. This sentiment holds much more weight if circumstances stay moist, making strategy photographs that for much longer.

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