Things are heating up on the PGA Tour. Two weeks ago we had the The Open Championship, last week we had a thrilling finish at the RBC Canadian Open, and now this week we have the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.
Next week we have the PGA Championship and then of course the playoffs start right around the corner. This is the time to really tune in and watch the best players in the world compete week in and week out.
The WGC-Bridgestone Invitational is an interesting event because it’s limited to 75 of the best players in the world, everybody in the top 50 in the Official World Golf Rankings is here, and there is no cut. Every golfer plays on the weekend…or at least they can if they want. Golfers can still choose to withdraw.
So, considering all that it, this weeks sleeper picks will be different. They won’t really be sleeper picks at all. This is more a less value plays to keep in mind this week when setting your lineup. So, with that said, let’s get into the picks.
Jason Dufner: Firestone Country Club is an interesting in that it’s a long course, but that doesn’t necessarily mean short hitters can’t perform here. This is a course which is typically hot and dry so that’s usually a slight advantage to the shorter hitters who will get some extra bounce and carry. But, it’s also very important to be accurate of the tee as well. Basically, total driving success has been the formula for success.
With that said, we are starting off with “The Duff Man.” Dufner hasn’t had the best of years so far, but he has played here at Bridgestone extremely well the past two years. Last year, Dufner finished T-4 and in 2012 Dufner finished solo 7th. I’m looking for Dufner to compete this week.
Steve Stricker: Whenever Steve Stricker plays in an event, you have to strongly consider him. “The Savage” Stricker has played a light schedule the past couple of years and when he does tee it up he usually does pretty darn well.
Since the Houston Open, Stricker has finished T-24 (Houston Open), T-31 (The Masters), T-6 (Memorial Tournament), T-21 (U.S. Open), T-35 (Greenbrier), and T-11 (John Deere Classic) . Stricker is making the cut and finishing really well. Not only is he in good form, but he has played really well here at Firestone Country Club.
Last year, Stricker finished solo 13th, 2012: T-2, 2011: 14th, 2010: T-9, 2009: T-9. When you consider how well he’s playing, how well he has played here at the WGC-Bridgestone, and how undervalued he is I think Stricker is probably one of the better pick ups you can make this week.
Zach Johnson: Again, I was very surprised to see Zach Johnson as low as he was. Johnson has been in pretty darn good form all season long and has a good track record at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. Last year, Johnson finished T-4, in 2012 he struggled with a T-40, but in 2011 he finished T-6.
I like Johnson’s game, he’s very accurate off the tee and is just a fantastic ball striker and he is one of the better putters on Tour. Johnson should be up there in contention this week as well and considering the price, I think he’s a very good deal as well.