The 2019 Masters Tournament is set to go live April 11th live from the historic Augusta National Golf Club with a purse of $11,000,000. Of course the coveted green jacket is also up for grabs to the winner but for fantasy golf players we will once again be chasing dreams of winning the Fantasy Millionaire Contest at DraftKings. No green jacket for us but I think we will settle for the $1 Million top prize for 1st place.
Not to be outdone FanDuel has a massive $1,000,000 prize pool in their Top Contest the “Mega Eagle” with $200K going to 1st place. We will be covering fantasy Masters picks for both DraftKings and Fanduel.
Masters Top Tier DFS Picks
Last Year Finish – 10th
Best Finish – 4th (2016)
Top Tens – 3
6 Top Tens
I think at the top tier the majority of ownership is going to go to Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose. This is why I like DJ if I’m picking a guy above $10K in salary. I’m expecting he will be owned 15% or lower in the big GPP contests at Draftkings and Fanduel. He is extremely consistent at the Masters finishing 10th, 4th and 6th with an average of 80 DraftKings points over the last 3 Masters he has played in. I don’t think Rory will win as the favourite this year so if I can get Johnson at lower ownership and around the same fantasy points as Rory (80 to 90) I’ll take it.
Alternative Top Tier Pick
Jon Rahm – Rahm seems to perform his best at Augusta finishing 4th last year and 27th in 2017. He has only played in the Masters twice but he is on fire so far in 2019 with 6 Top Tens. Because of how well he is playing I expect that is going to drive his ownership way up from the 11% range he was in last year. Add that to his high salary for 2019 and l I’m a bit hesitant to lock him in my lineups.
Masters Top Value Picks
Last Year Finish – 19th
Best Finish – 5th (2015)
Top Tens – 2
9/9 cuts made
3 Top Tens
Hideki is such a consistent performer on the tour that you can almost lock him as a value play every major tournament. The problem is he’s missing that killer instinct to put some more wins on the board. While he may not win he does get you fantasy points with an average of 70 over the the last 3 years at the Masters. I think you get him at a discount this year on DraftKings at $8700, he is usually above $9000. He is playing well so far in 2019 so there is no reason to fade him in my opinion, he’s coming off an 8th place finish at the Players which is a good test to see where his game is at.
Alternative Value Picks
Jason Day – Day is a way bigger value play on DraftKings compared to Fanduel and that’s where I will play him the most. I think most people will be sleeping on Day this year because when you look at his history at Augusta he finishes on average in 17th place. A consistent top 20 player at the Masters is just not sexy looking enough to most people when they are making their lineups. This year however, Jason Day is starting to look like the player that dominated a few years ago. Throw out his last event in which he missed the cut and he has finished no worse than 13th in any event in 2019. He has 3 top 5 finishes and I think we may just see him at the top of the leaderboard at Augusta in 2019.
Jordan Spieth – Ok I have no choice but to throw Spieth in the value category this year. The Masters is his home court, the guy destroys Augusta and has never finished worse then 11th. His salary this year is $8900 at DK and $10,400 on FD which is really low for him at this tournament. Why? Because he has been an absolute mess on tour in 2019. His best finish so far is 35th with 3 missed cuts, one of those cuts being the Players Championship. I have no idea what to do with him this year, if you are playing multiple lineups you can toss him in a few but if I’m only entering one Millionaire Maker contest it will be extremely hard to put him in it. On the plus side he will be lower owned than ever before so good luck on your decision.
Masters Sleeper Pick
Last Year Finish – 9th
Best Finish – 4th (2013)
Top Tens – 2
5 Top Tens
Leishman has put together a solid 2019 so far with 5 top tens including a win back at the beginning of the season in Kuala Lumpur. I think he will go a bit under the radar because of his quiet personality. He is not well known to the casual players and tends to fall below 7% ownership at the majors. At the Masters he has put up on average 51 DK points in the last 3 years. He has the potential to not only Top 5 but actually win as a big underdog.
Alternative Sleeper Pick
Jimmy Walker – I was surprised when I checked Walker’s past history at the Masters, the guy has been as consistent as they come. He’s 5 for 5 in cuts with an average finish of 22nd place. You are getting him at a discount salary this year because he is playing horrible right now so he is a very risky play. He should be below 5% owned so I’m willing to take the risk that he finds his game at Augusta where he has been very comfortable in the past.
Masters Lineup Building Strategies
Let me start right off the bat and tell you that if you are taking a shot at either Draftkings Millionaire Contest or Fanduel’s Mega Eagle that your chances of being first are extremely slim. You need so many things to go right with your picks and frankly need everyone to have a top 10 finish in your lineup. That being said you can still win money (lots of it actually) if you follow some basic strategic advice for these large player GPP contests. Here are my top tips for your DFS golf lineups:
- Limit your player pool. If you are entering 5, 10, 50 or 150 lineups you are going to need to take a stand somewhere. You can’t play everyone and you should try to narrow down a core group of guys that you feel comfortable with. Once you do that you can start throwing in some darts around them and hope you hit that sleeper no one has. I find the top DFS players tend to have anywhere from 30 to 55 players when they are using 150 lineups.
- Do not pick all chalk. What does that mean? Avoid trying to stuff your lineups with the highest expected owned golfers. This year that would be guys like McIlroy, Johnson, Woods, Rose, Thomas and Rahm. I’m not saying totally avoid them but having more then 2 is counterproductive to your ROI. You are basically holding hands with over half the contestants in the contest and need to pick the perfect lineup thereafter. It’s golf there is no such thing as a favourite to win and outside of Jordan Spieth, it’s been underdogs like Patrick Reed, Danny Willet and Bubba Watson taking home the green jacket.
- Be different but don’t be stupid. You have to go contrarian in order to win the million dollars no question about it. Your lineup almost must have some random guy at less then 5% owned. That doesn’t mean to go out and pick Sandy Lyle for crying out loud. Look at 1st time golfers in the Masters who many people avoid and European or Asian tour golfers who are not well known. Tony Finau finished 10th last year in his 1st time at Augusta, he was 2% owned. Hao-Tong Li got you 63 Draftkings points last year, he was under 1% owned. That’s the kind of contrarian I’m talking about and might just land you $1 Million.
The one other tip I will throw your way is to check out FantasyDraft.com. It would be your best alternative to the big 2 sites Draftkings and Fanduel. The prize pools are smaller but the competition is not as strong and most of their contests have big overlay which is a huge advantage to you.