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Sunday, October 6, 2013

Frys.com Open - Preview

Before we kick off the preview of the Frys.com Open, let me first say that this was an incredibly short off season for full-season gamers with leagues starting this week, but nothing out of the ordinary for weekly players.

I will say that I'm having a little bit of a Billy Bob from Varsity Blues feeling. You know. Early in the movie when the party's going strong and Billy Bob tosses his cookies, then grabs another cold one and yells "puke and rally!" That is to say, I'm looking forward to the traditional down time in November and December, but hopefully have enough of a second wind to push through the Fall Series.

This will be the fourth time the Frys.com Open has been contested at CordeValle Golf Club. The previous winners and runners-up are as follows:

  • 2010 - Winner: Rocco Mediate (-15); Runner-up: Bo Van Pelt and Alex Prugh (-14)
  • 2011 - Winner: Bryce Molder (-17); Runner-up: Briny Baird (-17 playoff)
  • 2012 - Winner: Jonas Blixt (-16); Runner-up: Jason Kokrak and Tim Petrovic (-15)
That makes for a very confusing list of eight names. You have veterans like Mediate, Van Pelt, Baird and Petrovic, but inexperienced TOUR pros like Prugh, Blixt and Kokrak. Only Molder is somewhere in between. I consider Molder and Blixt to be very good putters

So let's look at CoredeValle.

Each of the last three years it has played as a 7,368-yard par-71, and it is a Robert Trent Jones design. It features three par 5s, all over 550 yards with one stretching over 600, but the par-4 17th is a short one with a history of fireworks. It can be driven, and at times with a 3-wood. Three of the four par 3s are over 210 yards, with two over 230. 

The stats tell us that driving accuracy means very little. It also suggests that putting is rewarded, distance is generally good and GIR never hurt. My read is that distance is rewarded because missing the fairway isn't punished. 

Ironically, what I described above is not all that different from a typical Web.com Tour event. I will take a hard look at guys fresh of the Web.com Tour Finals with any past history of relative success at this track. One thing that is different is the spot on the schedule. Instead of being in the heart of the Fall Series, this year it kicks of the Fall. Form will be tough to identify. 

We will be back with power rankings tomorrow. Until then, happy research!

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