What: AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am
Where: Pebble Beach, California
When: February 8th-11th
Defending Champion: Jordan Spieth
FedEx Cup Points and Purse: 500 and $7,200,000
Can you believe it? This past week was the fourth week in a row we saw some playoff golf! Gary Woodland edged out Chez Reavie in one playoff hole at the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Woodland had a closing round of 65, which put him at -18 for the tournament. It was his first win since his wins at the 2013 Reno-Tahoe Open, which is a modified Stableford scoring event, and the 2011 Transitions Championship (currently called the Valspar Championship.)
Up this week is the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, one of the TOUR’s most popular events. Recent past winners here include Jordan Spieth, Vaughn Taylor, Brandt Snedeker (-22 tournament record here), and Jimmy Walker. As part of the Pro-Am, we will also see such celebrities as Larry Fitzgerald, Wayne Gretzky, Bill Murray, Aaron Rodgers, Tony Romo, Ray Romano, and the list goes on.
Pebble Beach actually runs three courses over the course of the event. All require strong iron-play and some good putting, as these courses are links-style, which bring high winds and small greens. As always, strokes gained: tee to green and putting, as well as fairways hit and scrambling, will be some key stats this week. In the forecast right now, it’s looking like Saturday will be the windiest day of the tournament.
Before we get into this week’s picks, let’s review last week:
Last Week’s Picks and Results
Matsuyama: A very unforeseen WD
Z. Johnson: T57
This Week’s Picks
Jordan Spieth – Last year’s champion has never finished worse than T22 here in five trips. Spieth is also perfect in cuts made here. Last week’s cut was just a blip in the radar, as Spieth still reigns supreme on TOUR.
Jason Day – Day has also never missed a cut here at Pebble and is making his return this season after a well deserved week off. He owns four top-6 finishes at Pebble Beach and placed T5 last year. The recent injury he may have had seems to be non-existent.
Dustin Johnson – DJ currently sits second all-time in earnings at Pebble Beach, and he has won here twice among four other top-5s.
Jon Rahm – We’ve come to set standards so high for Rahm that last week’s finish was sort of disappointing. Since his runner-up and victory at the Sentry and CareerBuilder, Rahm has posted a T29 and T11 at the Farmers and Waste Management, respectively. Not to say Rahm is trending down or anything, but he’s just outside the top tier this week. He finished T5 at his Pebble Beach debut last year.
Phil Mickelson – The all-time earnings leader here at Pebble Beach has a whopping four victories. Last week’s finishing round was a little disappointing, but Mickelson still finished T5. Lefty should be a big play this weekend.
Patrick Reed – Reed owns zero missed cuts at Pebble in five tries to go along with two top-10s. He is coming off back to back top-25s overall on TOUR and currently ranks fifth in strokes gained: putting.
Rory McIlroy – Rory is going to be practically free this week in salary leagues. Making his season debut, he’s shockingly never even made an appearance here at Pebble. He has played absolutely lights out so far this season overseas.
Brandt Snedeker – A two-time champ here (2013 and 2015), Snedeker is looking just fine after his injury, with a promising T23 last week. He also finished fourth here last year. He’s a bit of a risky play to rank him this high, but the upside is there.
Gary Woodland – Coming off that playoff victory last weekend at TPC Scottsdale, Woodland is a perfect 7-for-7 in cuts this season, with finishes of T7, T12, and WIN over the last month. He’s going to be feeling good after breaking that five-year win drought.
Hunter Mahan: In his last four appearances here, he has posted top-16 finishes in all of them. Being a good all-around driver and putter makes Mahan a great cheap option that could be playing some competitive golf come Sunday.
Jim Furyk: Furyk is a cheap option this week, as this is his first tournament of the year. He’s historically a great scrambler with incredible accuracy, but it remains to be seen if he can contend with his incredibly accurate, but not so long driver. Furyk made all 21 cuts last season, with 18 top-25s. A safe bet if you can find a low price.
Kevin Streelman – Streelman flies so low under the radar that he’s somehow almost cemented himself as a permanent sleeper. He ranks 4th in GIR, 25th in driving accuracy, and 5th in scrambling. He has a perfect eight cuts made so far this season, with four top-25s and one top-10. His last two finishes here recently include a T14 and a T17.