Greetings golf enthusiast and welcome back to the Fantasy Golf Sommelier, Valero Texas Open edition. I really missed you 10’s and 10’s of people that read this. I mean, it’s literally felt like 6 months since I wrote the last FGS but I have to admit the little break was good for me. You might say I was in a little bit of a “dry spell” when it came to content for the article. They can’t all be bangers though people! (Side note: any of you thinking about talking shit about alleged past “dry spells” mentioned on the podcast can go F yourself) Love our listeners though! Mean it! Ok…moving on…
In the opening there I mentioned the word “dry” a couple of times which was for good reason as I want to talk about dry wines this week in the FGS. Personally I’ve always been a little confused as to what actually embodies a dry wine, what makes it better or worse according to personal taste, and what produces a wine “dry” in nature. I think one of the first and most important characteristics of wine is the immediate reaction, feel, taste, impression you get when in hits your lips. That’s where it all begins. It’s like that first kiss. You aren’t taught how it’s supposed to make you feel, what’s right or wrong, but I think you do know immediately when it feels right, don’t you think? If you’re a wine drinker, the first sip is often the best in my mind. It’s the most mysterious, passionate, and curious at the same time.
It’s a common misconception that the term dry for wine has a more sensory tone, as if it’s actually lacking moisture in the true sense of the word. I know for me, when I first started hearing the term dry when someone described a particular wine, I immediately thought it was going to dry my mouth out or something. Seriously, that’s what I thought. That’s not at all the case though. A dry wine basically just means it’s lacking sugar, so it’s not sweet. So without being too technical, a dryer wine is a more complete wine in the fermentation process because the yeast has basically eaten all the sugar. I love all different types of wines, but the dry ones seem to have just a touch more passion behind them producing extraordinary flavors in that first sip. I’m not exactly sure why that is, but perhaps maybe it’s because of this longer fermentation process. Either way, next time you go to order wine at dinner, you’ll never have to worry about dry mouth afterwards thanks to the FGS. Bome!
Now, on to the Valero Texas Open 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 stroll on down into the sommeliers’ cellar of fine golf plays for the week…
Jason Kokrak – $9,400 – 93 Points – Kokrak has been on an absolute tear this year having made the cut in all 11 events he’s started with 3 top 10’s in his last four events including a 2nd at the Valspar that he could have easily won. He’s coming in fresh out the bottle this week also taking last week off and I see no reason he won’t continue his stellar play. What I think has been so impressive about Kokrak’s game this year has been with the driver, he’s always been known as a guy with some pop off the tee, but this year he’s also driving the ball accurately ranking in the top 25 in the field in Fairways Gained. This week you will have to hit fairways off the tee and Kokrak is doing that along with ranking number one in the field in both Ball Striking and Strokes Gained Approach. Kokrak should be a solid lock in DraftKings GPP or Cash Lineups.
Ryan Moore – $9,100 – 92 Points – Ryan can be a tricky little booger to pick, but he’s played pretty well recently with a top 20 at the Players Championship and a T33 at the Arnold Palmer a few weeks ago. TPC San Antonio is a good course fit for Ryan as well as he ranks high in Ball Striking, Stroked Gained Approach, and Driving Accuracy. I typically like to play him as well on courses where he has shown proven success and that is what we have seen at Valero with a top 10 finishes last year and a T18 in 2017.
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.
Aaron Baddeley $8,300- 90 Points – Badds! When I first started doing my research this week I have to admit I kept skipping over Baddeley for no other reason than I just really never play him. He’s been in good form though lately in weaker field events (like we have this week) finishing 7th last week at Corales, 2nd in Puerto Rico, and T17 in a very solid Arnold Palmer Invitational Field. Another reason Badds really didn’t factor in all that much was he just doesn’t pop off the page at you when it comes to the stats with his scrambling ability really the only great thing he’s doing lately (2nd in the field in Strokes Gained Around the Green). That being said, the history here is stellar as he has gained over 28 strokes on the field in his last 5 starts at the Valero with zero missed cuts and three top 20 finishes including a solo 5th in 2017. Based on all this, I would say Aaron has all the characteristics of a good low owned GPP play to round out your lineups with this week.
The $10 Wine Special – Priced like a Sutter Home, plays like a Caymus!
Joel Dahmen – $7,500 – 91 Points – There’s a whole lot to love about our man Joel Dahmen this week heading into the Valero with three consecutive solid outings that include a 12th place finish last week and at the TPC just a few weeks ago. Joel is fantastic off the tee as far as accuracy and currently in the top 30 in the field in Ball Striking which includes being number one in greens in regulation. We mentioned several times on the show how small the greens are here so you have to be precise and to do that, also hit fairways to give yourself the best chance to score. Joel goes off early Thursday so you may even throw a small unit on him for first round leader as well. Bome.
Dylan Frittelli – $7,300 – 88 Points – It doesn’t happen often, but from time to time DB and I both will choose a guy that I think there’s no chance we’re both on. Well Frittelli is that guy this week at a relatively cheap price for his caliber on DraftKings. Dylan has definitely been golfing his ball lately though making cuts in 9 of his 13 events between the Euro and PGA Tour with 3 finishes inside the top 20. He’s also been great fantastic with his ball striking and off the tee (12th in the field in Strokes Gained off the Tee). Throw in a T20 last year in his first ever start at the Valero and Frittelli is in the perfect spot to fill your lineups as a low owned GPP play.
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).
Jhonattan Vegas – $8,700 – 78 Points – This is super painful for me as Johnny V has been incredible lately and won me some money with a First Round Leader bet a few weeks ago at the Honda, but I’m just not feeling Vegas this week for my PGA DFS lineups. The form is definitely there, but I am going to fade the ownership which I think will be extremely high at his price point in a weak field. Ball Striking has been on for Vegas but when you dive a little deeper at that stats that really matter this week, he just doesn’t really pop especially in Driving Accuracy (94th in the field), and Strokes Gained Approach (71st) which are both key this week. Looking further though into course history, Johnny hasn’t been anything but stellar on this course with 3 missed cuts and nothing better than a 34th finish. I’ll gladly fade the history and stats on a guy that will more than likely be plus 20% owned in GPP’s on DraftKings.