His PGA articles have been featured here on RotoCurve for the past year. Ryan is a former PGA professional, so his golf course and player insights are second to none. Ryan is originally from Cleveland, Ohio, but now resides in South Florida with his wife and son.
Latest posts by Ryan Baroff (see all)
- Fantasy Golf Picks: RSM Classic PGA DFS “Sleepers” - November 14, 2017
- Fantasy Golf Picks: OHL Classic PGA DFS “Sleepers” - November 7, 2017
- Fantasy Golf Picks: Shriner’s Hospital for Children Open PGA DFS “Sleepers” - October 31, 2017
The final leg of the FedEx Cup playoffs is the Tour Championship, held at East Lake Golf Club. East Lake, just outside of downtown Atlanta, is the home of Bobby Jones, and is thus entrenched in PGA Tour history. It’s been the longtime host of the Tour Championship, even before the inception of the FedEx Cup playoffs. East Lake has been lengthened dramatically over the years, and now plays as a 7,400-yard par-70, one of the toughest courses in the playoffs. The Donald Ross design features difficult tee shots, sloped and angled fairways, difficult-to-hit greens, and an emphasis on accuracy. For players missing greens, there’s thick bermuda rough and bunkers to deal with. We’ve seen elite bombers like Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy win here, but ultimately, this course is about ball-striking. Recent winners of the Tour Championship include Jordan Spieth, Billy Horschel, Bill Haas, Brandt Snedeker, and Jim Furyk. These players all have excelled on other Donald Ross designs.
The fairways are tough-to-hit, and make players very uncomfortable off-the-tee. Every fairways slopes and angles, making them very difficult to find. Some players will choose to club down off-the-tee, but that’ll leave a handful of approach shots from outside 200 yards, with firm, small greens as targets. There are only two par-5s at East Lake, and both will be reachable for the majority of the field. Par-4 scoring will be crucial this week, as will putting. I’m going to continue to ride players who are in great recent form, focusing on guys who have played well the past three playoff events.
It’s not the type of course you can hide your inaccuracy, or your lack of length. Beyond that, I’m targeting players who have been strong on their approach shots. These greens are going to be firm and fast, and we’ve heard players and professional describe these greens as “four-quadrant” targets. That means you’ll have to hit to the correct section of the greens to have birdie looks, or else you’ll have difficulty avoiding three-putts.
Now, onto my sleeper picks of the week for the Tour Championship.
DraftKings High-End Sleepers
There aren’t any high-end sleepers this week, so I’m providing my two favorite elite studs to pay up for.
Jordan Spieth ($11,600)
Although Jordan Spieth had his worst tee-to-green week of the FedEx Cup playoffs at the BMW Championship, he secured his third straight top-5 finish. He hasn’t won a playoff event this season, but he still leads the FedEx Cup standings, and is primed for his second title. Spieth won here two years ago, and I expect the same this week. He’s an elite iron and wedge player, and putts better than anyone in the world. This course is commonly compared to Augusta National, and nobody has a better recent record there than Spieth.