Fantasy Golf – Sony Picks

My rank on the Golf Channel fantasy golf leader board is miserable against the full field of participants.  Ok, full disclosure, my rank is 5550 (yes, I have a long way to go).  However, comparing myself to the “Expert Leader board” for the Golf Channel (GC) Experts, I’m tied with Annika Sorenstam ranked at 14. Annika may not like her rank against her peers but I’ll take it as a positive sign that I am in the mix and not lower than any of the GC Experts.

Now for my Sony picks:

(1) Web Simpson — He is one of my favorite younger players and he tied for third last week at the Hyundai. I think he will win this year and I’m hoping for an early start with picking him for Sony.

(2) Rory Sabbatini — My gut is that he is going to be really motivated after what happened to him at the Hyundai.  What happened?  He was 20 seconds (yes, seconds) late for his tee time and he was hit with a two-stroke penalty.  This is a significant penalty if you think about the fact that Steve Stricker won by one stroke over Martin Laird.  The fact that Rory recovered (by that I mean got his composure back to shoot a 73 even par round that day) and that he finished with a 68,68 on the final two days makes me think he is capable of winning this week.  Motivation and capability makes me pick him from group two.

(3) Heath Slocum — no one inspired me in group three.  So this is my “what the heck” pick this week. He is a middle of the pack player but at least he has played before (versus trying to pick one of the 25 or so rookies playing their first time on tour.)  But I do have my eye on two rookies to pick later in the season.  I’ll blog about them later.

(4) Jeff Maggert — So I am going “old school” on this one and it is a risk but to be honest I picked him because he has been on tour since 1986 and has won in the past. However, 2011 was not a stellar year so I’m hoping he has a decent start to 2012. But, it is a risk because he could also miss the cut.

Being new to this fantasy golf game, I think I will learn something new each week.  Lesson from week one — the group format is tough. I thought I’d be able to pick any 4 players each week which would be easy to pick my favorites.  But now it is clear that the groups are based on performance (with top performers in group one and moving down the ranks to fill-in the other groups) and picking in Group 3 and 4 when you are “deep in the field” with average or low ranking players is a big challenge for me.  I might have to start actually looking at statistics like driving accuracy, GIR (greens in regulation), and putting averages. But that seems like too much work so let’s not go there yet.

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Fantasy Golf 2012 Starts Today

This year, for the first time, I have entered a Fantasy Golf League online.  It seems appropriate that this be my first post.  Why?  Well, because it is winter in New England and so I don’t have any “on course” antics to share.  So, I am going to share my golf expectations for how well I will do in the Fantasy Golf League.

My expectation is optimistic – if you are a numbers person, a 7 out of 10 that I will do reasonably well (or will be in the top 10 in the leader board and will win one week sometime this season). Now, I have never participated in a fantasy league. I’m sure those that I am competing against for the weekly, sectional,and year-end grand prize have all kinds of statistics and knowledge they use to pick their predictions; but I will start with just my gut (basically players I know and like to watch or maybe throw in a golfer just because I feel like it)

The first tournament is the Hyundai Tournament of Champions and my guys are:

(1)  Bubba Watson – because he is a lefty, and Phil is not playing. Plus he just had a round of 58 on his home course so I take that as a good sign that he will play well this week.

(2)  Keegan Bradley – because he is from New England and his aunt is Pat Bradley, one of the LPGA’s finest (in her day, won 31 tournaments and is in the Golf Hall of Fame).

(3)  Kevin Na – because he won Justin Timberlake’s tournament last year and I actually like the fact that Justin supports golf as a sport.  Timberlake is the owner of  Mirimichi, an eco-friendly golf course and Callaway Golf just named Timberlake as creative director (and I’m a Callaway fan.) I guess Callaway is hoping he will “bring sexy back” to golf and young fans to Callaway.

(4)  Brendan Steele — to be honest I don’t really know anything about Brendan but I had to pick someone from the list in “group 4” and I recall seeing him play. This is my “what the heck” pick.

Now, you may look at my picks and think to yourself that my optimism is crazy but this is only the first tournament and the field is only 28 players (so many of my favorite players are not in the running because this tournament is for golfers that won a tournament in 2011.)

I have many, many tournaments to improve my predictions.  Check out the next post to find out the results.