One and Done Selection For the AT&T Byron Nelson

2018 AT&T Byron Nelson

Trinity Forest GC- 7,380 Yards- Par 71
Greens: Bermuda

The 2018 AT&T Byron Nelson will move from its old venue of TPC Four Seasons, into its new home of Trinity Forest. First-time courses are always tricky to break-down because of the uncertain nature of what playing style will be needed. Trinity Forest Golf Club is a 7,380 yard Par 71, which is a rather long course for being a Par 71. One would think that a little distance off the tee wouldn’t hurt, but according to players in the field, length will not be a problem for anyone. Player’s should be able to find the long, undulated fairways easily but any missed fairway will result in havoc. There is very little playable rough when you miss, and most of the grass will be high and thick. It is the type of grass that you will have to punch out of and reset. Despite the name of Trinity Forest, the course has no trees. There are bunkers all over the place, but they are less perilous than being in the thick rough.

Key Stats for the week:

Strokes Gained Approach- 25%
Good Drive Percentage- 15%
Strokes Gained Par 4- 20%
Strokes Gained Par 5- 10%
Birdie or Better Gained- 15%
Sand Saves-15%

These are rather pedestrian and straightforward stats for the week. I left out strokes gained off the tee because it seems like everyone will be in play unless they are missing fairways, which should add in good drive percentage as a key stat.

My OAD Selections for the season so far:

Sony Open
Gary Woodland T7- $193,233

Career Builder Challenge
Chesson Hadley T42- $18,983

Farmers Insurance Open
Tony Finau T6- $239,775

Waste Management Phoenix Open
Webb Simpson MC- $0

AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am
Brandt Snedeker T20- $80,167

Genesis Open
Paul Casey T49- $17,964

The Honda Classic
Alex Noren T3- $448,800

Phil Mickelson 1st- $1,700,000

Valspar Championship
Sergio Garcia 4th- $312,000

Arnold Palmer Invitational
Rickie Fowler T14- $137,950

Corales Puntacana Championship
Emiliano Grillo T50- $7,305

WGC Dell Technologies Match Play
Bubba Watson 1st- $1,700,00

Houston Open
Luke List T24- $54,163

Jordan Spieth 3rd- $748,000

RBC Heritage
Matt Kuchar T23- $53,823

Valero Texas Open
Adam Scott MC- $0

Wells Fargo Championship
Bryson Dechambeau 4th- $369,600

The Players Championship
Justin Thomas T11- $225,500

Total $- $6,307,263

Screen Shot 2018-05-15 at 12.26.40 PM
Golfers in the field I have used already: Scott, Kuchar, Spieth, Garcia, Snedeker.

My top-five OAD picks (Any golfer I have used will be eliminated from consideration.)
Guys I would consider if I hadn’t already used them: Scott, Kuchar, Spieth.

#5. Scott Piercy

Scott Piercy makes an excellent choice for anyone who needs a shot in the dark type of a pick. Piercy, who usually wouldn’t fit the mold of a One and Done selection, will provide some enormous upside at mid-tier ownership. Piercy will be VERY popular on DraftKings and will be selected in some OAD pools, but I wouldn’t expect his OAD ownership to be all that high. Players like Leishman and Grace will take up the majority of the ownership from that range level. In his last 24 rounds compared to the field, Piercy ranks first in strokes gained approach, seventh in good drive percentage, and 10th in Par 4 scoring

#4. Charles Howell III

Howell will come into the week as one of the highest projected owned players on DraftKings. Most of Howell’s ownership percentage will come from the safety he provides, rather than the upside he possesses. This will give Howell a little less ownership in OAD contests versus that of guys like Leishman and Grace. Howell ranks top-10 compared to the field in Par 4 scoring, good drive percentage, and sand save percentage. There aren’t going to be many more spots where you will be clamoring to use Howell, and in such a weak field, this is one of the better opportunities you will get.

#3. Marc Leishman

In Leishman’s last 24 rounds compared to the field, he ranks fifth in strokes gained on Par 4 scoring, and seventh in strokes gained approach. My biggest concern when it comes to Leishman this week is the chalky ownership he will possess across the board. He is currently projected to be the highest owned player on Draftkings at over 23 percent. This percentage will most likely translate into a high OAD selection rate. If you are in a position where you need to make up ground on the field, Leishman is probably not the best choice for you. If you are looking for someone who provides a high floor and should keep you near the top of your standings, Leishman may be your guy.

#2. Branden Grace

Branden Grace loves links-style courses, and Trinity Falls appears like it will be just that. Grace has not been overly impressive this season, but he has made 10 straight worldwide cuts, which includes six top-25s. Only one of those tournaments ended up being a top-10 finish, but Grace has been as steady as they come as of late. It is another similar spot of where you won’t have many places you will be actively looking to use Grace, and this may be as good of a tournament as any. Grace will probably be one of the more popular OAD picks so I would use him more towards the top of an OAD leaderboard than I would as a chaser who needs to make up ground..

#1. Hideki Matsuyama

Hideki Matsuyama is in a rare territory this week. He is a world-class player, who is in a weak field, and NOBODY is going to want to use him. Matsuyama is the ultimate contrarian play. Since Matsuyama injured his wrist and had to withdraw at the Pheonix Open earlier this year, he has only played five tournaments. He has made three of the five cuts, experienced one MDF finish and had a missed cut last weekend at The Players Championship. So what makes Matsuyama such a great play this weekend? Despite his shaky results, Matsuyama seems to be turning his game back around. Last week at The Players, he hit 85 percent of his fairways and gained 4.248 strokes off the tee. Matsuyama struggled with his approach and around the green game, but those are two stats that have been the best part of his game all season. If you take away the 17th hole, a hole in which Matsuyama played at seven-over par through two days, he would have been at three-under par and made the cut. Sure, it is possible there might be better spots for Matsuyama later in the season, but this feels like a unique opportunity to grab a top-10 player at a non-existent percentage.

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Bankroll Management/Golf Betting Card Construction

Sportsbooks are built because they win money; it is as simple as that. Sports betting doesn’t need to be a losing proposition for everyone who does it though. If you are stuck in the monotony of the same losing pattern when gambling, it isn’t just a cloud of bad luck following you. Many other factors may be coming into play. Recreational and professional bettors make egregious errors, both large and small daily. Small errors can turn into more substantial errors, and more substantial errors can turn into a complete loss of funds. Your goal is to minimize these mistakes as much as you can. Recognizing these potential land-mines already puts you ahead of most, but if you are not able to fix the majority of these gambling faux pas, I can promise you that betting will never be anything but an endless pit of despair, both psychologically and financially. The #1 mistake made by gamblers is a lack of bankroll management, so let’s start there.

Bankroll Management 

Bankroll management is difficult to understand for some. Before we start on this though, there is one important message I need to stress. Everyday life money and betting bankroll are two entirely separate things, and it needs to be kept as such. Don’t ever bet money you can’t afford to lose.

Sports betting when done correctly is a grind. It is not a get rich quick scheme. It is not those clips shown in movies of someone starting with $100 and leaving the casino with $10,000 a couple of hours later. When done correctly, it is a portfolio built through 1000’s and 1000’s of wagers. No one wager should EVER make or break you. A general rule of thumb is that no more than 2% of your bankroll should be risked on any one bet. While this is ordinarily a decent benchmark rule, I don’t necessarily think it is one that is concrete across the board. The more significant your bankroll is, the more you should be sticking to something along those lines of 1-2%, but small bankrolls do allow a bit more speculative maneuverability. Grinding with a $100 bankroll, betting $2 per game is just never going to get you anywhere. For these more rare occasions, taking shots is ok because the amount that will be gambled isn’t life-changing. Essentially, the larger the bankroll, the more careful you need to be and the smaller the bankroll, the more you can branch out a little. I’d advise anyone thinking about taking sports betting seriously to invest a bit of money and start with a larger amount. Start with a couple $1,000+ if possible. Remember, you aren’t risking all that money at once. A $3,000 bankroll should technically make a unit bet $30. Not all that much in reality.

What is a unit?

A unit is another very misunderstood term, that affects bankroll management in the process when not done correctly. A lot of touts who sell their picks will list a play that sounds something like this, “1000 Unit Play of the Year!” All this is trying to do is scam someone into buying his or her pick. There is no such thing as a 1000 unit play. It is click-bait, it is silly, and it is irresponsible.

One of the most commons errors I see bettors make is this: 
1 Unit= $10 bet                                   
2 Units=$20 bet                                  
5 Units=$50 bet

No play should be 5x the amount of another play. Part of your edge in betting is being able to find advantages, and in those advantages, you should be risking more but there are ways of going about it. I find that my largest play should be slightly less than double of what my smallest play is. I personally use this strategy:

$1000 Bankroll                           $4000 Bankroll                       $10,000 Bankroll
1 Unit= $10                                  1 Unit= $40                              1 Unit= $100
1.25 Units= $12.50                      1.25 Units= $50                       1.25 Units= $125
1.50 Units= $15                           1.50 Units= $60                       1.50 Units= $150
1.75 Units= $17.50                      1.75 Units= $70                       1.75 Units= $175

Notice how even though my bankroll in each example is different, the units remain the same. The bet amount varies, but the same percentage of the bankroll is bet in each instance. On rare “Play of the Year” type wagers, I will go 2x on a play. Meaning I will bet my 1 unit amount twice. $20 bet on a $1000 bankroll, $80 bet on a $4000 bankroll, and a $200 bet on a $10,000 bankroll.

Golf Betting Card Construction:

I use the concepts above for all sports. Golf is a little trickier because of the outright and head-to-head components each tournament. There are other sports like tennis etc., that would fall into this same example, but the only thing that changes though would be how to handle outright futures.

How I build my Card:

My head-to-head bets every golf tournament are going to be the meat and potatoes of my week. I find value where I think there is some and will bet accordingly.

Last weeks Head to Head Betting card looked like this for me:

Day -140 over Tiger
1.96 Units to win 1.40 Units

Woodland -130 over Reed
1.30 Units to win 1 Unit

Finau +105 over Harman
1.20 Units to win 1.26 Units

Hadley -110 over Lingmerth
1.76 Units to win 1.6 Units
(+1.60 Units)

I am doing full, standard plus unit wagers, like I would in any other sport.

The most prominent discrepancy of the card comes when I deal with outright picks to win the tournament. Picking outright winners is hard and can be very draining to the bankroll if not done correctly. You shouldn’t be placing a full unit on each golfer, and you shouldn’t be altering your win amounts drastically.

My Outright card last week looked like this:

Finau 35/1
Cantlay 35/1
Woodland 50/1 
Vegas 60/1
Uihlein 80/1
Hadley 100/1
Bonus Bomb- Kevin Tway 200/1
Saturday Night add of Justin Rose 8/1-

For the time being, I will ignore the Saturday night add of Justin Rose, but when I construct my card for the start of Thursday, I am trying to be around one total unit risked. If one unit for me were $100, it would look something like this:

Finau $25 to win $875
Cantlay $23 to win $805
Woodland $16 to win $800
Vegas $13.50 to win $810
Uihlein $8.75 to win $700
Hadley $7 to win $700
Tway $3.50 to win $700

Total Risk: $96.75
Risking: .9675 Units

For starters, notice how we don’t have glaring gaps between win totals. There are slight gaps to account for whom I liked more, but for the most part, I am trying to leave myself a clean hedge if I decide to hedge on Sunday.

Depending on how the card is shaping up Friday and Saturday night, I might decide to add more “runners” into the mix also. Meaning, I may add another player or two onto the betting card. This will allow me to get a player I think might make a run on Saturday or Sunday at a higher price and it will give me an opportunity where I don’t have to hedge during Sunday’s round. Saturday night of this instance I had Woodland and Finau both in the top-six. Looking down the card, Justin Rose was 8/1 to win. I decided to add him on. When I add someone on, I am usually doing so to try and win half of what my original win amounts were on other players. For this case, I would bet $50 to win $400. Roughly half of my Finau and Woodland win totals.

Unfortunately, none of Rose, Finau, or Woodland won in this example.
Leaving me down:
Negative -1.4675 Units on futures but still up +5.26 units on my head-to-heads.

Each sport will have a separate quirk that will set it apart from another but remember the general strategy remains the same still. Stay disciplined, stay focused and most importantly go into each bet with a thought out plan. Tilt betting is a sure-fire way to deplete the bankroll quickly. Every bet should be strategically thought out. Find your edges and attack with purpose.


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Farmers Insurance Open Betting Recap

For the fourth tournament in a row, we end up profitable thanks to the head-to-head plays but can’t seem to find an outright winner, even though we are oh so very close. Bankroll management and adequately building a golf card, are critical components that I will touch on more in depth on my next blog. I think rather than cramming it into a recap post; it deserves its separate space of discussion. I will explain how I build a betting card and how bankroll management factors into decisions. Most of these concepts I use for all bets, but the construction of a golf betting card is different than other sports because of the outright/head-to-head options.

Just like Scott Piercy and Kevin Chappell last weekend, Tony Finau and Gary Woodland couldn’t come from slightly off the lead to give us our first outright win of the year. Our Saturday night add decision came down to Justin Rose at 8/1 or Jason Day at 8/1. With wind looming on Sunday, I decided on Justin Rose as the final piece to my betting card, which unfortunately proved to be wrong when Jason Day was instead the one who came off the pace to secure the victory. We have just been a couple of breaks here and there from having a considerable weekend payday.

I think it will be an interesting feature to look back on official picks each week after the tournament is over. What was said pre-tournament in the write-ups vs. what happened?

Farmers Insurance Open (Official Card)

Finau 35/1 Tied for 6th
Cantlay 35/1 Tied for 51st
Woodland 50/1 Tied for 12th
Vegas 60/1 Missed Cut
Uihlein 80/1 Missed Cut
Hadley 100/1 Tied 23rd
Bonus Bomb- Kevin Tway 200/1 Tied 35th
Saturday Night add of Justin Rose 8/1- Tied for 8th

*** No Outright was done for the Sentry Tournament of Champions, but Vegas and Uihlein are our first two missed cut players of the year. Both went from Top 15 after day one, to absolutely imploding and missing the cut.

Head to Head Bets (Initial Write-up): Post Tournament Write-up in Bold

I am not a big proponent of laying large juice on bets, but a couple of them seem poorly priced.

Jason Day -140 over Tiger Woods (Win)
While I don’t trust Jason Day entirely because of bogey plus rate and the ever-looming injury potential, I believe in Tiger Woods 10000x less. Inconsistency will be at a premium for Tiger Woods until he finds some rhythm. Making the cut feels 50/50 for Woods.
Day Grades out 11th on my spreadsheet.
Tiger no ranking because of no trackable data.

***Injury Potential did creep in, but that will teach me for saying I don’t trust Jason Day entirely! Nonetheless, Day was our pick to beat Tiger, and in doing so, he also beat everyone in the whole tournament. 

Gary Woodland -130 over Patrick Reed (Win)

Gary Woodland may have trouble winning tournaments, but at venues he likes, he is beyond consistent. This isn’t a tournament Patrick Reed usually plays, and he arrives with no current form. Being paired with Tiger Woods will either propel the best out of him (Ryder Cup-style) or be an extra distraction for a player who can’t seem to find his game.
Gary Woodland 4th on my spreadsheet.
Patrick Reed 33rd on my spreadsheet.

***Woodland unfortunately for our outright pick, proved once again he wasn’t capable of getting the job done but did manage to squeak by Patrick Reed. Reed showed more form than he had recently and probably was propelled by playing with Tiger. Woodland had a sizable lead over Reed going into Sunday but had to hold on for dear life after blowing up early in his round. Once again though no harm was done. 

Tony Finau +105 over Brian Harman (Win)
I don’t love pairing two golfers against one another who are both top-25 options on my spreadsheet, but in this circumstance, I think it is the right thing to do. Tony Finau loves this course, and I would be shocked if we don’t get another top-25 performance from him. Brian Harman is being propelled on the spreadsheet from his recent form. Torrey Pines is not a course that fits his game, and his overload of golf may finally catch up to him here.
Tony Finau 1st on spreadsheet.
Brian Harman 23rd on spreadsheet.

***This happened to be a spot on prediction of what transpired. Finau came T6 and Harman missed the cut. It is tough betting against players with the form Harman had but when the course landscape changes so drastically from what
1. Fit their game initially, to a new place that doesn’t.
2. Is a new look for a golfer worn out with too much golf.

It usually is the right spot to fade that player. It didn’t hurt Finau was the No.1 Golfer on our spreadsheet. 

Chesson Hadley -110 over David Lingmerth (Win)
This is one of the biggest head-scratching match-ups to me. Hadley is being completely disrespected after his performance last week. A performance that still saw him make the cut and finish in 42nd place. His last five starts have yielded a third, second, fourth, 37th and 42nd place finish. Lingmerth is the poster boy for inconsistency. With a long course that doesn’t even fit his game, I am perplexed by the number.
Chesson Hadley 12th on the spreadsheet
David Lingmerth 95th on the spreadsheet

*** Once again this was a pretty spot on breakdown pre-tourney. Hadley is just a better golfer on most tracks and for one where the course fit Hadley better than Lingmerth, it seemed like a no-brainer. Hadley finished Tied for 23rd and Lingmerth missed the cut.

Year to Date Golf Betting:

Head to Head Bets (14-2+15.48 Units YTD

Outright Winners (0-3-3.2775 Units YTD
***Outright card is built per tournament. Meaning the collection of golfers are essentially a one-unit bet for myself give or take a bit.

Sentry Tournament of Champions

Jordan Spieth -104 over Dustin Johnson
1.3 Units to win 1.25 Units

Marc Leishman +170 over Brooks Koepka
1 Unit to win 1.7 Units

Kevin Kisner -110 over Xander Schauffele
1.1 Units to win 1 Unit

No Outrights

Sony Open
Zach Johnson +110 over Russell Henley
1 Unit to win 1.1 Units

Ryan Armour +110 over Jimmy Walker
1.2 Units to win 1.32 Units

Chez Reavie +130 over Bill Haas
1.5 Units to win 1.95 Units

Tony Finau +100 over Russell Henley
1.25 Units to win 1.25 Units

Ollie Schneiderjans +110 over Patton Kizzire
1 Unit to win 1.1 Units

Outright: Gary Woodland T7, Ollie T7, Chez Reavie T18, Kisner T25, Zach Johnson T14
(-.94 Unit)

Career Builder
Webb Simpson -115 over Patrick Reed
1.15 Units to win 1 Unit

Charles Howell -110 over Jason Dufner
1.1 Units to win 1 Unit

Peter Uihlein -110 over Bill Haas
1.1 Units to win 1 Unit

Scott Piercy +120 over J.J. Spaun
1 Unit to win 1.2 Units

Outright: Cauley T14, Piercy T6, Peterson 75, Palmer T20, Steele T20, Chappell T6
(-.87 Units)

Farmers Insurance Open
Day -140 over Tiger
1.96 Units to win 1.40 Units

Woodland -130 over Reed
1.30 Units to win 1 Unit

Finau +105 over Harman
1.20 Units to win 1.26 Units

Hadley -110 over Lingmerth
1.76 Units to win 1.6 Units
(+1.60 Units)

Outrights: Finau T6, Cantlay T51, Woodland T12, Vegas MC, Uihlein MC, Hadley T23, Tway T35. Post tournament add Justin Rose T8.
(-1.4675 Units)


Please stay tuned for my Bankroll Management/Golf Betting Card Construction Blog

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