The Memorial Preview
Since Muirfield is a par 72, it should come as no surprise that the par 5’s are crucial to scoring. Two of the four par 5’s are very reachable this week at 5 and 15, and the other two at 7 and 11, are reachable only by the longest of hitters. Regardless, the par 5’s this week are very important.
All the par-3’s; Averaged over par here last year. The toughest of the bunch is the 16th, which almost 30% of the field Averaged Bogey last year
Another scoring observation about Muirfield is the overall scoring setup. The front nine is significantly easier than the back nine is. Due to this, getting off to a hot start is imperative to overall success, as players are almost assured of giving strokes back to the field on the incoming nine.
Generally At Muirfield, If you miss the fairway, you will be looking at bogey. If you hit the fairway but miss the green, you are likely looking at bogey. Even if you hit the green but miss your spot, you could be looking at bogey. Basically, you have to play all around great golf on each and every shot. Jack makes sure to reward good shots and duly punish poor ones.
Ok last week’s picks didnt go so well; I’ll be the first to admit it
But its a new week and I’ve made some tweaks to my Formulas to put more emphasis on Course History
So with that being said, here we go:
After removing players with Poor Recent History, Poor Course History or just not enough Data to track, the field was narrowed down to 55 Players.
From there, I analyzed the two most important Stats this week – Both in Overall ranking and Recent Form
- Strokes Gained: Approach, and Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green.
These numbers, combined with looking at Rankings in:
- Approach from 175-200 Yards (All Four Par-3’s are listed between 175 and 200 yards)
- Birdie or Better %
- Good Drive %
And after looking at THOSE numbers for each of the remaining 55 Players in the field, I narrowed it down to these 14 guys
A few of them definitely stand out;
- Jon Rahm – He has made all 14 cuts this year, with top 5 finishes 2 of the last 3 weeks including a runner up this past weekend. He has not played the Memorial before, but proved last week at Colonial that that shouldn’t be an issue for him. Jon is 3rd in SG: Approach, and 2nd in both SG: Tee to Green and Approaches from 175-200 yards. Giddy up
- Dustin Johnson – DJ Has made 7 Cuts in a row, with his last 3 finishes coming in at 13th, 12th and 2nd – to go with his streak of wins right before that. At the Memorial he has made 7 of his last 8 cuts, with two top-fives, five top twenties, and a 3rd and 13th the last two seasons. Dustin also leads the tour in a bunch of stats, most importantly this week – SG: Tee to Green
- Matt Kuchar – A Hot name this week. Kuch has made 6 straight cuts and finished 12th and 9th in his last two events on Tour. Even more impressive is his Memorial resume. He’s 7/7 in the last 7 attempts at making the cut, with a win, four top-tens, and a WORST finish of 26th place, including a 4th last year
- Patrick Cantlay – The OTHER hot name this week, but I like it. Patrick has made the cut in all 11 events he has played this year, he ranks 4th in Approaches from 175-200 yards, which ALL 4 Par-3’s Measure, and is 7th in Good Drive %. As mentioned earlier, the fairways may be wide but if you miss one… You’re screwed
- Hideki Matsuyama – Has made 9 of 10 Cuts this year. In his brief Memorial History, he has made 2 of 3 cuts, with a WIN and a 5th place showing. Hideki also ranks 7th in Strokes Gained Tee-to-Green and 3rd in Birdie or Better Percentage, something that will come in handy with not only 4 Par-5’s, but also a lot of Bogeys lurking. Bounceback birdies and All-around solid play could propel Hideki to a good finish