An in-depth DFS scouting report on the Fort Worth Invitational
Course: Colonial Country Club (Fort Worth, Texas)
Yardage: 7,209 – Par 70
Purse : $7.1 M
Field: 121 players
*Past Fort Worth Invitational Champions
The youth movement continued to roll in Dallas last week, as 21-year-old Aaron Wise shot a final round 65, shattering the Byron Nelson scoring record (23-under) en route to his first career PGA Tour victory. After the third round, Wise was tied with Australian Tour vet Marc Leishman at 17-under apiece. After enduring a four-hour rain delay to start round four, Wise was the one who played like a veteran, showing no nerves during a bogey free final round. His six birdies all came in a seven hole stretch between the fourth and 10th hole. After his final birdie on the 10th hole, Wise parred his way in, never leading by less than three shots. Wise’s first career win is the third this season by the PGA Tour rookie class (Austin Cook, Satoshi Kodaira), and the 14th victory for players 30 and under in a total of 28 tournaments this season.
The players who competed last week in Dallas only head 45 minutes west this week for the Fort Worth Invitational. Previously under the name Dean and Deluca Invitational, the PGA Tour has its second unsponsored event of the season (Houston Open had no sponsor). One of the five “invitationals”, the Fort Worth Invitational will see a field of 121 players gather at Colonial Country Club this week, smaller than our usual 144 to 156 man fields. From a Fantasy standpoint that means that more rosters will see six out of six players making the cut, depending on how it all shakes out, a six of six may not guarantee you cash this week.
As an Invitational tournament, the 121 man field had 16 different ways to get invited to this tournament. Despite being an invitational, the Fort Worth Invitational doesn’t garner as much attention from the top players as other Invitationals, such as the Memorial or the Arnold Palmer Invitational. Even so, we’ll have a much better field to look at than last week with 19 of the Top 50 players in the world making the trip to Fort Worth. Jordan Spieth will have another “home game” this week, headlining the field alongside Jon Rahm, Rickie Fowler, and Justin Rose. The winners of the past two events, Webb Simpson and Aaron Wise, will both tee it up as the next highest priced players, followed by Jimmy Walker, who has logged three straight Top 10s. Matt Kuchar will try to bounce back from a missed cut at the Byron Nelson, and Brooks Koepka makes his second start after an impressive return from his wrist injury. There are a lot of great options in the second tier range with Adam Scott, Patrick Cantlay, Bryson DeChambeau, Jason Dufner, Louis Oosthuizen, Emiliano Grillo, Zach Johnson, Xander Schauffele, Chesson Hadley, and Kevin Kisner. Even cheaper options are names like Ollie Schniederjans, Steve Stricker, Kevin Na, Brian Harman, Beau Hossler, Adam Hadwin, Scott Piercy, Ryan Palmer, Cameron Smith, Si Woo Kim, and Pat Perez. Overall this is a very strong field that should have a lot more name power at the top of the leaderboard. Last weeks lackluster field saw two of it’s main draws miss the cut in Sergio Garcia and Matt Kuchar, while Jordan Spieth (T21) and Hideki Matsuyama (T16) missed out on contention. That won’t happen again this week, as there are plenty of players to get excited about.
@RG_Notorious I’m at Fort Worth invitational watching spieth on the range…….he looks dialed in ……just sayin
— Jason Morra (@jason_morra) May 22, 2018
Colonial Country Club is the first Par 70 course we’ve seen in a few months. Ben Hogan’s five victories at Colonial led to the course being nicknamed “Hogan’s Alley”. Playing out to 7,209 yards, this course falls into the “not too short, not too long” category. With only two par 5s, and a whopping 12 par 4s, Par 4 scoring is a must for success this week. Most of the 12 par 4s measure either in the 400, 440, or 480 yards range. A fairly flat course, the fairways are narrow and tree-lined, making for a test that calls for thought-out shotmaking. Players who are gaining in Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee this week will have a solid chance of success. Bombers can’t just step up and rip it dead straight and 320 yards. Many of the holes are dog-legged, so accuracy and proper shot-shaping will be needed in order to navigate those holes.
As is the case in most events strokes gained: approach will be extremely valuable here. One of the two Par 5s isn’t reachable and the other one isn’t reachable for everyone, so that means on about 17 or 18 holes per round, players will be hitting a full shot into the green. When looking over the yardages, I think that approach proximity 175-200 yards will be the most valuable distance to key in on. Three of the Par 3s measure between 190-199 yards, and with nine of the Par 4s measuring between 440-480 yards, many players will find themselves right in that range on their approach shot into the green.
Par 4 scoring
Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee
Strokes gained: Approach
Approach Proximity 175-200 yards
Jordan Spieth Featured Image: (AP Photo/Eric Gay)