This article is part of our FanDuel PGA series.
Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship
Course: Corales Golf Club (7,670 yards, par 72)
Winner: 300 FedExCup points
It's not often we see the same event played twice in the same season, but that will be the case with this week's tournament in the Dominican Republic.
It was just back in September – one week after the U.S. Open – when Hudson Swafford held off Tyler McCumber to win his second career PGA Tour event. Back in the fall, however, the Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship was a full-field event. Now it will continue to go back to its traditional alternate-field status, dropping the purse and leaving the winner with 300 FedExCup points instead of the usual 500. This will be the fourth PGA Tour event held at Corales Golf Club, which also hosted a pair of Korn Ferry Tour events in 2016 and 2017.
Precipitation is not expected to affect the tournament, but this exposed course will force players to deal with strong, gusty winds coming in off the ocean. Having said that, the winning score each of the last three times here was 18-under-par, so expect to see plenty of red numbers this week.
Key Stats to Victory
- SG: Approach
- SG: Putting
- Birdie Average
Putting has taken a back seat in recent weeks, but it will arguably be the most important factor in Punta Cana in regards to crowning a champion. Brice Garnett and Graeme McDowell both led the field in putts per GIR when they won in 2018 and 2019. Back in September, Swafford ranked fifth in putting when he got it done. The greens at Corales will only run at about 11 on the Stimpmeter due to the traditional breezes off the ocean on this very exposed course. There will be plenty of room off the tee for the field of 132, and if they do find the rough, it's only two inches deep in the worst places. The track will very much play as a second-shot golf course. Get it in play off the tee and whoever can set themselves up with the most par-breaker opportunities will likely be the one holding the trophy. The green complexes at Corales can be tricky, so players who fare well in scrambling numbers also have value. It's going to be a race this week, so high conversion rates with the putter and being able to keep bogeys or worse off the card will be key.
FanDuel Value Picks
Thomas Pieters ($11,800)
Pieters is the priciest player in the field, and many would agree the most talented as well. The Belgian has impressive length off the tee and putting has been a strength for him throughout his career. In fact, Pieters has finished 35th or better on the European Tour in putts per GIR the last seven seasons. He is also coming into the week in good form, going T10-T15-13th in his last three starts worldwide.
Charley Hoffman ($11,700)
The 44-year-old is quietly off to a very strong start to the season. He has gone 12-for-16 with three top-10s and seven top-25s. Hoffman is trending as well, with top-20 finishes in three of his last four starts. The four-time PGA Tour winner ranks 34th in SG: Off-the-Tee, 18th in SG: Approach, 62nd in SG: Putting, and 31st in SG: Tee-to-Green. Hoffman scored a T14 finish at Corales back in September.
Emiliano Grillo ($11,600)
He's the worst putter on this list, but his ball-striking numbers are some of the most impressive in this field. Grillo ranks 12th in SG: Off-the-Tee, third in GIR percentage, and fifth in proximity to the hole this season. He comes in with top-25s in three of his last four starts. Grillo also recorded a top-25 finish here in September.
Justin Suh ($10,600)
The USC product has put together some solid PGA Tour showings when he has gotten the opportunity. He has made 4-of-5 cuts and notched a T8 at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open and a T14 at Corales in September. Suh ranks 10th in GIR percentage, fourth in proximity to the hole, and 42nd in putts per GIR. He's also averaging 4.44 birdies per round this season, which ranks top-20 on Tour.
Longer Shots with Value
Brice Garnett ($9,800)
Garnett took home the title the first time Corales hosted a PGA Tour event back in 2018, and he boasts a 69.67 scoring average over 12 career rounds here. After an up-and-down beginning of the season, he scored a T5 in Puerto Rico and a T25 at The Honda Classic in the past few weeks. Garnett ranks 15th in SG: Putting and 39th in one-putt percentage this season. He is also 13th in driving accuracy and 23rd in scrambling.
Chase Seiffert ($9,600)
Seiffert is certainly trending after posting a T15 in Puerto Rico and shooting a six-under 64 on Sunday to finish T3 at The Honda Classic last week. Seiffert's iron play has been very good this season, as he ranks top-40 in both SG: Approach and proximity to the hole. He was also second in SG: Approach, sixth in SG: Tee-to-Green, T6 in GIR, and T12 in putts per GIR last week at PGA National.
Kristoffer Ventura ($8,600)
Ventura probably wishes we could go back to the beginning of the season, because his T52 back in September here was sandwiched between a T7 and a T6. As mentioned, putting will play a major factor, and not many have been better than Ventura. The Oklahoma State product ranks sixth in SG: Putting and 26th in putts per GIR. Ventura is also fairly long with his driver, and the space off the tee should free him up.
Kelly Kraft ($8,500)
His numbers have not been good this season, but if there's anywhere Kraft can break out of a slump it's here at Coarles. In three starts in Punta Cana he has gone 3-T5-T14 and has posted a 68.83 scoring average. Kraft ranks 23rd in SG: Approach, 46th in putts per GIR, and 32nd in three-putt avoidance this season. In a field this weak, he'd be one of the few players worth reaching for under the $9,000 mark.
Strategy Tips This Week
Based on a Standard $60K Salary Cap
Value is generally tough to find in alternate-field events, so the trends here are what you should try to follow. Many of the players you research this week won't have consistent numbers across the board. At Corales you are mainly looking for good numbers in the putting and approach departments. Golfers that find themselves in the top 40 of either category – or both – will be safe bets to fare well. Of course, both recent form and course history will be key when selecting players in a field this shallow.