Greetings golf enthusiast and welcome to this weeks edition of the Fantasy Golf Sommelier for the RBC Heritage. Also known as, the post Masters week, hungover, and perhaps slightly still drunk sommelier just trying to keep it together after perhaps the greatest Masters ever. I won’t harp on that too much though, if you need your fix just listen to the pod, but my god almighty what a week. It’s almost fitting though that the Heritage falls in line immediately after the Masters. It is quite literally, and if you’ve been to it you’ll know, one of the most laid back and fun tournaments on tour. Definitely a much needed reprieve after perhaps the most intense week on tour. Personally, I spent a little time on Hilton Head Island living there for 2 years after college in the early 2000’s. It’s grown tremendously over the years, but there are some great golf courses and the beach there is second to none in the south.
Speaking of the south, and wine, because that’s technically what we are supposed to cover here in the FGS. We don’t really make good wine in these parts, but believe it or not we do actually have a varietal grape native to the south. It’s called muscadine, and it doesn’t really produce the finest of wines. Muscadine wine is typically very sweet which is just not my thing, and I’m also pretty sure the majority of it is produced in a garage using recycled Boone’s farm bottles with inkjet printed labels stuck on there for good measure. I would imagine also if the finest Sommelier in the world were to list their tasting notes from a sip of muscadine, they would surely include hints of fresh peaches, the bruised part of an apple, perhaps some honeydew, watermelon, and a slight hint of WD40. It’s not all that bad though, I mean, you could technically serve it as a fine dessert wine and nobody would ever know because who really likes dessert wines anyway. So let’s toast to the finest wine in the south, and in keeping with the laid back and fun tradition of the RBC Heritage, just chug the whole damn bottle because it’s time to get loose people!
Now, on to the RBC Heritage plays of the week. As always, we are going to use the classic Wine Spectator 100 point scale for the picks (think of it like a confidence factor):
- 95-100 Classic: a great wine
- 90-94 Outstanding: a wine of superior character and style
- 85-89 Very good: a wine with special qualities
- 80-84 Good: a solid well-made wine
- 75-79 Mediocre: a drinkable wine that may have minor flaws
- 50-74 Not recommended (or a very shitty wine)
So, here we go, let’s stumble on down into the sommeliers’ cellar of fine golf selections for the week…
Jim Furyk – $9,400 – 95 Points – Old man Furyk has been in fantastic form this year with 5 top 20 finishes in his last 9 starts and a near miss at The Players Championship where he finished second to stud Rory McIlroy. We can attribute extremely solid ball striking to his success this year as he is doing all the things right that should point to a stellar week in Hilton Head. Harbour Town is a tough course with tight tree lined landing areas off the tee and the smallest greens on tour. So Driving Accuracy, Greens in Regulation, and Scrambling will all be key this week. Besides ranking in the top 15 in the field in Ball Striking, Furyk is also 2nd in Driving Accuracy, 2nd in Greens in Regulation, 4th in Strokes Gained Approach, and also in the top 25 in the field in Scrambling. That is pretty damn impressive and puts Furyk right at the top of my core GPP and Cash plays this week.
Sungjae Im – $8,400 – 92 Points – I’ve been a regular passenger on the Sungjae train all year and see absolutely no reason not to hop back on again this week following coming off a break during last weeks Masters (by the way, I fully expect that to be the only time Sungjae is not a Masters participant for a LONG time, the dude’s a stud). In his rookie year on tour, Im has been incredibly consistent despite the fact that he’s seeing all these courses for the first time. He’s making his hay being a fantastic ball striker (12th in the field), Scrambler (12th also in the field), and is just not missing greens as he ranks 10th in the field in Greens in Regulation. Lock him in this week in your tournament lineups.
Pop the Cork on him and Let it Breathe – This is the guy we didn’t mention on the pod but after further review, popped later in the week and is a sneaky good, possibly low owned play.
Byeong-Hun An $8,200- 91 Points – Benny An wasn’t mentioned on the pod, but after the Masters hungover finally wore off he was definitely popping as a solid play this week. He’s been very consistent so far this year making 10 of 11 cuts and also played well here last year with a T7 in his first trip around Harbour Town. In keeping also with the key stats I’ve mentioned I love this week, Benny ranks high in almost every category including ball striking, scrambling, strokes gained approach, and greens in regulation. I do think An has some decent ownership but I’m willing to eat the chalk on him this week.
The $10 Wine Special – Priced like a Sutter Home, plays like a Caymus!
Lucas Glover – $7,800 – 90 Points – It’s just impossible not to like Lucas this week on a course perfectly suited for his game. As DB likes to say, Lucas has been ball striking his balls off this year and there’s no reason to believe that won’t continue in Hilton Head. One thing also that could be an issue this week is the wind, which is looking to be up in the 20-25 mph range a couple days of the tournament. So you will have to control your ball and Lucas can certainly do that. Outside of ranking inside the top 20 in the field in every single stat box I’m checking, Glover has been very accurate off the tee which should serve him well on these tight tree lined fairways. Like Furyk, I think you don’t think twice about locking him in your cash or GPP lineups.
Adam Schenk – $7,100 – 88 Points – If you’re going to play someone like DJ this week you will have to find some solid cheap options and our boy Schenk fits the bill. Folks are starting to catch on to him and his cut making self, but he’s still projected to be less than 5% owned and makes for a great fantastic cheap option for your tournament lineups. He’s yet again another ball striking machine who also checks the box in Strokes Gained Approach. The form is there as well finishing T7 at the Valero and T33 at Corales. There’s some risk in that this will be his maiden voyage around Harbour Town, but I say roll the dice and let’s see if we can’t catch that green screen disease with Schenk this week.
Boone’s Farm Vintage Fade of the Week – Boone’s Farm is basically convenience store wine we drank in college and possibly could kill you (not really, but it’s gross).
Bryson Dechambeau – $10,400 – 79 Points – I’m gonna double dip this week and take Bryson for the second week in a row in the FGS. We’ve seen Bryson fare pretty well over the last 3 years here with two top 5 finishes sandwiching a missed cut, but I’m going to fade him and his projected high ownership this week. Bryson’s game has by no means been terrible either, but for a guy priced this high the form isn’t exactly what I’d like to see of chalk I’m paying up for. As far as checking boxes, Dechambeau has always been a pretty good ball striker but over his last 24 rounds he ranks near the bottom of the field in Greens in Regulation, Strokes Gained Approach, and Scrambling. So once again, it’s Bryson repeat fade week and let’s sit the scientist again in your lineups for the Heritage.