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Opinion & Analysis

Redkacheek’s DFS Rundown: 2018 Mayakoba Golf Classic

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We did it again! Another outright win in the books for 2019 as we crushed the Bryson outright at 15-1 this past week at the Shriners Hospital Open. We also added on a Sam Ryder top five for an additional 14-1 so, all in all, our betting card came through for us up about 24 units. DFS was also a tremendous success with several FGB members and fellow GolfWRXers winning MULTIPLE GPPs!! Overall, we could not have asked much more from the Shriners open and am looking forward to another cut event here at Mayakoba.

In addition to this article and the FGB Podcast which I host each week, I will also be a guest on The Pat Mayo Experience show again this afternoon. If you are looking for even more insight and analysis for this golf course and the field, I highly encourage you to check out Pat’s show this week as he is one of the sharpest golf minds in the industry. Of course, you can always find me on Twitter @Redkacheek and I am more than happy to answer any questions you may have.

Let’s go ahead and take a look at the course.

Here are the details of the course for the Mayakoba Golf Classic:

Course Snapshot

Course: El Camaleon Golf Club at the Mayakoba Resort
City: Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Par: 71
Length: 6,987
Course Difficulty: 70.32 (32nd)
Birdie Average: 3.80 (35th)
Birdie or Better Percentage: 21.55% (33rd)

Course Rankings (OFF THE TEE)

SG: Tee-to-Green: N/A
SG: Off-the-Tee: N/A
Driving Distance: 283.1 (4th)
Driving Accuracy: 64.58% (32nd)

Course Rankings (APPROACH TO THE GREEN)

SG: Approach-the-Green: N/A
GIR Percentage: 67.42 (34th)
Proximity to Hole: N/A
Rough Proximity: N/A
Fairway Proximity: N/A

Course Rankings (AROUND THE GREEN)

SG: Around-the-Green: N/A
Sand Save Percentage: 53.65% (44th)
Scrambling Percentage: 58.46% (30th)

Course Rankings (PUTTING)

SG: Putting: N/A
Putting Average: 1.763 (31st)
One-Putt Percentage: 39.00% (30th)
3-Putt Avoidance: 3.20 (19th)
Putting – Inside 10’: N/A
Putting from – > 25’: N/A

This course has played very consistent over the years and that is great for us as we dig into the key stats. As you can see, Mayakoba is an exceptionally short golf course for today’s standards. The driving accuracy number looks very good (read easy) but do not let that fool you, as driving distance is near the bottom of the pack for the PGA Tour at only 283.1 yards. I will get right to it, this is absolutely an accuracy, tee-shot placement, and second-shot golf course. I certainly wouldn’t rule out any longer hitters, as they likely will be able to club down on most par-4 tee shots and get the ball in play with a 3-wood or even a 2-iron.

Check out these quotes below from Cam Champ and also Jon Rahm that gives the perfect picture of who should play well here:

Cameron Champ: “Obviously it’s very demanding off the tee, but if you hit fairways here, the course is very scorable depending on the weather conditions. Obviously, the wind can pick up some. I hit a lot of 2-irons here, I think half the holes I’ll probably hit 2-iron on the majority of the holes. Par 5s obviously I’ll hit drivers. I just kind of feel comfortable. Even though it’s narrow, it’s just the way it suits my eye, for some reason I just feel comfortable.”

Jon Rahm: “Well, technically it doesn’t suit my game. I mean, it’s really a course for shorter hitters, it’s not really long off the tee. There’s a lot of emphasis and importance on keeping the ball in play off the tee, so that means I’m not able to use my driver as much as I would like to, which is one of my main tools.”

As you can see, driving accuracy and iron play is going to be critical this week, so here are my Key Stats for the week:

• SG: T2G
• SG: APP
• GIRs Gained
• Driving Accuracy
• Par 4 Scoring (400-450)
• Par 5 Scoring
• *Recent Form
• **Course History

The last two are not so much stat driven but should certainly be considered when building out your player pool. I use Course History as a gauge but not a be-all and end-all, and same goes for Recent Form where I like to SEE which guys have some momentum (good or bad) coming into this week.

I am going to list out the top Cash and GPP plays in each price range to help you get a better picture of how to build your lineups…

Expensive

Rickie Fowler (Cash/GPP)
Tony Finau (GPP)
Gary Woodland (Cash/GPP)
Billy Horschel (GPP)
Emiliano Grillo (Cash/GPP)
Charles Howell III (Cash/GPP)

Mid-tier

Zach Johnson (GPP)
Cameron Champ (Cash/GPP)
J.B. Holmes (GPP)
Joaquin Niemann (Cash/GPP)
Ryan Moore (GPP)
Abraham Ancer (GPP)

Value

Sungjae Im (Cash/GPP)
Keith Mitchell (GPP)
Chris Kirk (Cash/GPP)
J.J. Spaun (Cash/GPP)
Harold Varner III (GPP)
Anders Albertson (GPP)
Viktor Hovland* (Relatively expensive and unknown but GOOD at golf)

Super Value

Danny Lee (GPP)
Mack Hughes (Cash/GPP)
Alex Prugh (Cash/GPP)
Richy Werenski (GPP)
Adam Svensson (GPP)

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I am ranked in the Top 35 of all DFS Golf players and best known for winning the DraftKings Millionaire Maker contest during the week of The Masters earlier this year. I am very active around the community, always willing to help whether with strategy or research and you can find me on Twitter @Redkacheek and also each week on the Fantasy Golf Bag Podcast. One last note, my history is in professional golf, which definitely adds a unique perspective to DFS that most people do not have and you will find really gives you an edge when evaluating players each week.

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Opinion & Analysis

A different perspective

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A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to play a round with two of the greens keepers at a local golf course and it was a fascinating experience. It gave me a chance to get a behind-the-scenes view of what it takes to make a golf course great.

Many of us play at public courses, and sometimes its luck of the draw if the course we are at is in good condition. In my case, if I find a course that is well maintained and taken care of, I make it a regular stop. In this case, I was at Ridgeview Ranch in Plano Texas and it is a great public course and I play here at least once a month.

The two guys I played with were Tony Arellano and Jose Marguez. Both were great guys to share a round with. Tony shared what it’s like to make sure that all the greens are maintained properly and watered correctly. He showed me where there were some issues with one of the greens that I would never have noticed. We talked about how the invasion of Poa annua grass forces his guys to pull it out by hand with a tool that is smaller than a divot repair tool. It became clear to me that as a golf community, we need to lift up the people that do this labor-intensive work and thank them for all they do. Ridgeview Ranch is without a doubt one of the better public courses in my area, and it is because of the hard work these men do that keeps it this way.

As we watched the Masters tournament a few weeks ago we were awestruck by the awesome beauty of Augusta National and in my case I believe that is what heaven looks like. I think we take that kind of beauty for granted and forget the massive amount of time and hard work that go into making a golf course look good. These people have to deal with all of the different factors that Mother Nature throws at them and be prepared for anything. In addition to that, they also have to make sure the watering system is maintained as well as all of their equipment.

I have played at other courses in the DFW area that have a terrible staff and a superintendent that either don’t care about the course or don’t know how to stop it from falling apart. The course won’t spend the money to go get the right people that will take pride in their work. Some of these places will charge you more than $80 per round, and when you get to the first green that has dry spots that are without any grass you feel like you have been ripped off.

We all love this game not because it’s easy but because it’s a challenge and being good at it takes a ton of effort. We also love it because it gives us a chance to hang out with friends and family and enjoy time outside in the sun– hopefully without cell phone interruptions and other distractions of our modern day. We spend a ton of money on green fees, equipment and sometimes travel. We want to get what we pay for and we want to have a great course to spend the day at.

I wanted to write this article to thank all of those men and women that start work in the early hours of the day and work through the hottest stretches of the summer to keep our golf courses in great shape. They are people that never get the credit they deserve and we should always thank them whenever possible. Tony and Jose are just two examples of the people who work so hard for all of us. Ridgeview Ranch is lucky to have these two men who not only work hard but were fantastic representatives of their course. So next time you are out there and you see these people working hard, maybe stop and say thank you let them know what they do really makes a difference.

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Opinion & Analysis

5 most common golf injuries (and how to deal with them)

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You might not think about golf as a physically intensive game, but that doesn’t change the fact it is still a sport. And as with every sport, there’s a possibility you’ll sustain an injury while playing golf. Here’s a list of the five most common injuries you might sustain when playing the game, along with tips on how to deal with them in the best way possible so you heal quickly.

Sunburn

While not directly an injury, it’s paramount to talk about sunburns when talking about golf. A typical golf game is played outside in the open field, and it lasts for around four hours. This makes it extremely likely you’ll get sunburnt, especially if your skin is susceptible to it.

That’s why you should be quite careful when you play golf

Apply sunscreen every hour – since you’re moving around quite a lot on a golf course, sunscreen won’t last as long as it normally does.

Wear a golf hat – aside from making you look like a professional, the hat will provide additional protection for your face.

If you’re extra sensitive to the sun, you should check the weather and plan games when the weather is overcast.

Rotator Cuff Injury

A rotator cuff is a group of four muscles that surround the shoulder joint. This group are the main muscles responsible for swing movements in your arms. It’s no surprise then that in golf, where the main activity consists of swinging your arms, there’s a real chance this muscle group might sustain an injury.

To avoid injuries to this group, it’s imperative you practice the correct form of swinging the club. Before playing, you should also consider some stretching.

If you get an injury, however, you can recover faster by following RICE:

Rest: resting is extremely important for recovery. After an injury, the muscles are extremely vulnerable to further injury, and that’s why you should immediately stop playing and try to get some rest.

Ice: applying ice to the injured area during the first day or two can help. It reduces inflammation and relaxes the muscles.

Compress: bandage the rotator cuff group muscle and compress the muscles. This speeds up the muscle healing process.

Elevate: elevate the muscles above your heart to help achieve better circulation of blood and minimize fluids from gathering.

Wrist Injuries

Wrist tendons can sustain injuries when playing golf. Especially if you enjoy playing with a heavy club, it can put some strain on the wrist and cause wrist tendonitis, which is characterized by inflammation and irritation.

You should start by putting your wrist in a splint or a cast – it is necessary to immobilize your wrist to facilitate healing.

Anti-inflammatory medicine can relieve some of the pain and swelling you’ll have to deal with during the healing process. While it might not help your wrist heal much quicker, it’ll increase your comfort.

A professional hand therapist knows about the complexities of the wrist and the hand and can help you heal quicker by inspecting and treating your hands.

Back Pain

A golf game is long, sometimes taking up to 6 hours. This long a period of standing upright, walking, swinging clubs, etc. can put stress on your back, especially in people who aren’t used to a lot of physical activities:

If you feel like you’re not up for it, you should take a break mid-game and then continue after a decent rest. A golf game doesn’t have any particular time constraints, so it should be simple to agree to a short break.

If you don’t, consider renting a golf cart, it makes movement much easier. If that’s not possible, you can always buy a pushcart, which you can easily store all the equipment in. Take a look at golf push cart reviews to know which of them best suits your needs.

Better posture – a good posture distributes physical strain throughout your body and not only on your back, which means a good posture will prevent back pain and help you deal with it better during a game.

Golfer’s Elbow

Medically known as medial epicondylitis, golfer’s elbow occurs due to strain on the tendons connecting the elbow and forearm. It can also occur if you overuse and over-exhaust the muscles in your forearm that allow you to grip and rotate your arm:

A nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug is the way to go to alleviate the most severe symptoms of the injury at the beginning.

Lift the club properly, and if you think there’s a mismatch between your wrist and the weight of the club, you should get a lighter one.

Learn when you’ve reached your limit. Don’t overexert yourself – when you know your elbow is starting to cause you problems, take a short break!

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Podcasts

TG2: Our PGA picks were spot on…and Rob hit a school bus with a golf ball

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Rob picked Brooks to win the PGA and hit the nail on the head, while Knudson’s DJ pick was pretty close. Rob hit a school bus with a golf ball and we talk about some new clubs that are going to be tested in the next couple days.

Check out the full podcast on SoundCloud below, or click here to listen on iTunes or here to listen on Spotify.

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