08/30/2016

Down to the final 100 in Boston, on the journey to the $10 million.

Now TPC Boston is a great stop every year on Tour. The fans love the game and this is the Bostonians chance to place their stamp on golf. After last week’s audition from the rival New York crowd, you can be sure that Boston will look to up-the-ante from an energy perspective.

If you’re from Boston, have visited Boston, or are generally just interested in the location of the golf course to the city, here’s a little Google Maps screenshot that should fit your specifications.

Screenshot 2015-08-31 17.05.03

Last (6*) Deutsche Bank Champs

2015: Rickie Fowler (Read recap here)

2014: Chris Kirk (Read recap here)

2013: Henrik Stenson (Read recap here)

2012: Rory McIlroy 

2011: Webb Simpson

2010: Charley Hoffman

Full Field

Click here to check out the entire 2016 Deutsche Bank field– aka the top-100.

This Week’s Player Picks

Three from the Fairway (Contenders)

Jason Day

His play down the stretch in New York put him in contention, including this crazy putt. He looked like he was going to backdoor victory before P-Reed held off the field. But the solid audition, yet again, puts Day in “no-brainer lock-ville,” for this week’s event in Boston.

Day’s last 7 starts in Boston have yielded 6 top-20 finishes, 3 of those top-10s.

I could go on and on, about his length, his putting, his iron play, and generally everything else that makes him one of the game’s best players, but I’ll just leave it there. He’ll play well this week. Don’t be a fool and leave him off your roster.

Emiliano Grillo

Absolutely cannot sleep on this young man anymore. After another high finish at the Barclays this week, he’s not a player I’m ignoring any longer. I’m just glad he’s from Argentina and we don’t have to play this guy in the Ryder Cup next month.

I was watching golf coverage a few weeks ago and I remember vaguely a story told about Grillo, as he was playing on the broadcast. They were talking of how Grillo’s swing coach, whose name evades my memory, promised major champions of his prized 23-year old pupil. That his game was that good. Hearing that, changed my perspective on the longest player in the world, pound-for-pound.

If you liked that one, here’s another. Jordan Spieth was asked about him at the Memorial Tournament, as the two were both 2011 grads along with Justin Thomas. This is what the two-time major champion had to say:

“He has one of the best golf swings, best strikers of the golf ball I’ve ever seen, one of the best ball flights. He has since he was 14, 15 years old.”

You know you’ve made it on the PGA Tour once you have the respect of your peers like that.

Grillo was a selection of mine at the Olympics a few weeks ago and he’s kept the play humming right along. He might be tired and pumping on fumes, but I’ll take the fumes of a player with good mojo right now. I’m snagging Grillo in his first career start in Boston.

Adam Scott

Face it, he’s another one of those guys. The “in contention everywhere he goes,” type. Don’t be fooled on Scott this week, his game last week in New York spoke enough of his form. A 4th place finish on one of the Tour’s most gnarly tracks will do it for your confidence. Tee-to-green last week, there wasn’t a player better than Scott.

But that putting though…esssh.

His play in Boston recently has been less than spectacular–a 53rd and a 16th–but before that, he was love-struck by the TPC Boston. Three straight top-10 finishes and a scoring par WELL under par made this another haven for Scott’s bank account. Look all the way back to 2003 and you’ll find the site of Scott’s first win on the PGA Tour, setting up his big breakthrough in 2004 at the PLAYERS.

I’ll take the ball striking and the vibes of Scott this week. You all can scramble for the others.

One from the Rough (Sleeper)

Johnson Wagner

I saw back-to-back top-5s from Johnson Wagner coming into the Barclays. Then I saw how the course at Bethpage Black would play for the week and said, “na, I can’t go with him this week.” So I went away from Wagner, dead set that he’d crumble.

Crumble, he did not.

Well, early on in the week things weren’t look great, but when a guy’s playing good, he’s never too far off. That’s when this happened.

In 4 career starts in Boston, Wagner’s never missed the cut. So if you’re looking for a guy with low ownership, a good track record, and good form coming in, Wagner might be your sleeper to nab.

The Man With the Trophy

Rory McIlroy

I picked him last year in Boston and I felt somewhat let down by the former world number one.

Now he’s a perfect 5-for-5 here at Boston in his career with a win (as you can see above in past champs) in 2012. Rory has to be over this “drought” he’s in. It’s time for a victory. Winless on the 2016 PGA Tour slate will not sit well with Rory and Boston is the place for it all to come full circle. I hate picking a Euro to find his form before the Ryder Cup, but I’m feeling it for Rory this week.

Now the questions around the putter. Ohhh…..the putter. It’s feast or famine with the flat stick for Rory. You know what this tells me? It’s all mental. For Rory, it’s a confidence thing. In his last 8 starts where strokes gained putting has been recorded, 7 of those events have witnessed him gaining or losing MORE THAN .500 strokes per round. That’s significant. One week (Memorial) he’s +1.88. The next, down to -2.10.

A sobering stat from last week.

But I’m calling for an end to it. It’s over. Rory’s going to find his stroke in Boston. And he’ll find it in a BIG way.

It’ll be with a (albeit, very bold call) victory.