2020 Masters - PGA DFS Tiers and Top Fade at Augusta National

The SI Golf Fantasy team of Ben Heisler, Alex White, and Mark Farris rank their top DFS plays for the 2020 Masters Tournament into pricing tiers, and discuss their top fade of the tournament.
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Previous 2021 PGA Tour Event Winners & DraftKings Salary

  • Vivint Houston Open: Carlos Ortiz ($6,700)
  • Bermuda Championship: Brian Gay ($6,300)
  • Zozo Championship: Patrick Cantlay ($9,400)
  • CJ Cup at Shadow Creek: Jason Kokrak ($7,000)
  • Shriners Hospitals for Children Open: Martin Laird ($6,400)
  • Sanderson Farms Championship: Sergio Garcia ($8,600)
  • Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship: Hudson Swafford ($6,700)
  • U.S. Open: Bryson DeChambeau ($9,900)
  • Safeway Open: Stewart Cink ($6,300)

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$9,000+ Range

Ben Heisler: Justin Thomas ($10,700) & Brooks Koepka ($9,700)

Bryson DeChambeau, Dustin Johnson, Jon Rahm, and Xander Schaffele are all projected to hold higher ownership percentages than Thomas this week, and other than a slightly elevated price tag relative to the rest of the field, I'm not quite sure why.

Thomas' game is a perfect fit for Augusta National. He's experienced playing at The Masters and his recent form is terrific, with three top 10 finishes in his last five events. Plus, over the last four years at this tournament, he's improved his finish in each of them: T39, T22, T17 and T12. J.T. also ranks top 6 in strokes gained: total, top 8 in SG: approach, and top 10 in SG: around-the-green, which will be critical playing a major in November when the conditions may be a bit more challenging compared to in the spring.

As for Koepka, I love him as a leverage play away from Dustin Johnson this week at a price tag that still feels a tad bit high compared to his (somewhat) recent form. I was off of him at the CJ Cup several weeks ago because I still had concerns about his injury status and iffy play, but a T5 finish last week at the Houston Open tells me he's ready to pounce in "Major SZN."

I’ll let my fellow SI Fantasy comrades discuss two cheaper, yet terrific plays in Schauffele and Johnson below. It’s absolutely worth mentioning, however, that I too think very highly of them for this weekend.

Mark Farris: Xander Schauffele ($9,800)

I know, "Bombing Bryson" is primed to eat this course alive. However, $11,200 is a lot to pay when a multitude of guys can get just as close and excessive distance off the tee isn’t exactly the key to winning Augusta. There are very few guys on this list that have the consistency of Xander and a complete game statistically. I’ll take the guy that’s been top 25 in his last 10 starts. BONUS: Patrick Reed ($9,200)

Alex White: Dustin Johnson ($10,000)

I feel like the pricing guys at DraftKings were sipping some sauce while making these pricing tiers. D.J. at $10,000 is criminal when you compare his form to other players around him. In his last 10 events he has three wins, three second place finishes, a 6th, a 17th and a missed cut.

Six out of his last ten tournaments have resulted in wins or runner-up finishes. He is currently the fifth highest priced golfer in the field. Read that again.

Last season he finished second at the Masters. This year he is in prime position to pull off his first Masters win. Conditions will be wet, so his distance off the tee will help him separate even further. This is a no-brainer play.

$7,500 - $8,900

Ben Heisler: Hideki Matsuyama ($8,700) & Louis Oosthuizen ($7,900)

Matsuyama wasn't great at the Masters last year, finishing T32, but the previous years before that he was excellent with three top 11 finishes in his last four tournaments.

He's coming off some great golf with a T2 at last week's Houston Open and his around-the-green game is in exceptional shape; ranking second in SG: around-the-green. It's a very reasonable price tag for someone with as good of a shot to win as anyone in this field.

As for Oosthuizen, it's not hyperbole when I say there are very few flaws in his game right now. Via FantasyNational.com, Oosthuizen is no worse than 31st in the field in any strokes gained category, and still comes in top 15 in SG: total. He finished 3rd in very difficult conditions at the U.S. Open, which continues to hammer home a point that he plays very well in Majors without typically winning. After winning the Open Championship in 2010, he's finished T2 four different times in Majors since 2010.

Mark Farris: Tony Finau ($8,800) & Hideki Matsuyama ($8,700)

I’m probably splitting hairs if I suggest one over the other. Both have been playing well and also well recently. Both of these guys have the personalities to make their way through Augusta and not let the bad holes that we know will happen, bother them. Both Finau and Matsuyama can rack up birdies and eagles by the basket full, and I anticipate they will each make the cut.

Alex White: Jason Day ($8,400)

Experience matters at the Masters, and Jason Day has the dual threat I'm looking for this week. Day is a long driver of the ball who can also putt on fast Bentgrass greens. 

Last season he managed a 5th place finish at Augusta and can play in any weather. Plus, he checks the clutch box, and has an ability to show up in big events. 

With everyone playing Finau in this $8K range (I do like Finau), this is a great pivot for some ownership leverage. Day has winning upside, Finau in talent has winning upside but he still hasn’t won a regular Tour event. I will take Day at a lower price tag, lower ownership, and with higher upside.

$7,400 and Under

Ben Heisler: Kevin Kisner ($7,100)

With 93 golfers in play and only the top 50 surviving the cut, this range is all about "survive and advance." Kisner fits that description to a tee (see what I did there?).

He's a longtime veteran of Augusta National and has improved his score consecutively in each of the last three years: T43, T28, T21.

Furthermore, he's also played the course 10 different times so far in November (mind you, this article came out November 10th, so he's been awfully busy) and knows exactly what to expect when the tournament arrives on Thursday.

I still have some concerns about his play off the tee as well as around-the-green, but he remains top 10 in SG: approach and SG: putting which more than makes up for some potential weaknesses. He's a very strong play with exceptional value at this price point.

Mark Farris: Ian Poulter ($7,000)

It’s a Major! It’s Poulter! He’s $7K! 

The Honey Badger will bring it simply because this is the atmosphere that gets his juices flowing. Plus, he hasn’t been playing bad either. His October performances on the Euro Tour have been a 5th (BMW PGA) and a T6 (Scottish Open). He also had a T12 at Shadow Creek (CJ Cup) here in the U.S. At this price, I don’t care about statistics other than current form - and that isn’t even that important to me with a guy of this caliber.

Alex White: Cameron Smith ($7,300)

What's not to like here? Cam has now made 10 straight cuts. In his last three tournaments he has a 24th, 11th, in his last tournament played he put together a 4th place finish at the Zozo Championship. Additionally, the putter has been on fire in his four events, as he has gained a combined 15 strokes on the greens alone. 

In his three attempts at Augusta he has finished 55th, 5th, and 51st. Last season going into the final round he was in the top 20 and shot an abysmal 77 five-over on Sunday. Take out that round and I bet more people would be on him this week. This season his putter will keep him near the top 10 with a chance to break into the top 5 once again.

Top Fade

Ben Heisler: Tiger Woods ($9,100)

We go through this every time, but this week I have to reiterate it because he's the defending champ, and because of the nostalgia factor at Augusta National.

Tiger Woods is always going to be mispriced because the public will play him. Period. End of story.

He's had four straight tournaments in which he's finished in the negative for strokes gained. He hasn't finished better than 37th since the PGA restart, and he's coming off a T72 at the Zozo Championship at Sherwood this year (a course he's very familiar with) and a missed cut at the U.S. Open.

Using Fantasy National's personalized model as a guide, I lined up Woods against players right directly in his price range. These are the results based on strokes-gained and recent performance:

Screen Shot 2020-11-10 at 7.29.55 AM

Unless you're willing to throw out any recent performance metrics, I can't envision a scenario where I will actively roster Tiger this week.

Mark Farris: Tiger Woods ($9,100)

Yes, the narrative is there as it will always be with Tiger at Augusta. But, bottom line, he isn’t playing well. When you finish at or near the bottom in a no-cut event, I’m not paying over $9K for you a few weeks later. 

He hasn’t finished top 35 since January either! If he lights it up and I get burned, so be it. I’d take Hideki at $400 less first.

Alex White: Collin Morikawa ($9,500)

I can’t pick on Morikawa too much. He is an exceptional young golfer that will be a fan favorite for years to come. However, he has shown how human he is in recent performances. The putter has been awful in the past three events. Collin has lost a combined 12.6 strokes with his putter in his last three events. You don't come to Augusta and just randomly start putting well. 

I will take my chances with other golfers that have experience at Augusta and understand it’s nuances. In April when we come back for the next Masters, my opinion could easily flip on Morikawa.