Daily Fantasy Golf Course Primer: 3M Open
For the second week in a row on the PGA Tour, a new course awaits the field as they prepare to tee it up at the inaugural 3M Open at TPC Twin Cities in Blaine, Minnesota. For the past 18 years, the course has hosted the 3M Championship on the PGA Champions Tour. It transitions to the main circuit this year and brings PGA Tour golf to the North Star State for the first time since the 2009 PGA Championship at Hazeltine National Golf Club (Hazeltine also hosted the 2016 Ryder Cup).
The seniors played a leisurely par 72 that stretched to just 7,114 yards and routinely yielded winning scores in the high teens under par over just three rounds. TPC Twin Cities was renovated last year to narrow the fairways and move back the tees, and the resulting 7,468-yard par 71 should at least be able to put up more of a fight than Detroit Golf Club did last week at the Rocket Mortgage Classic.
Befitting a course in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, water hazards are everywhere at TPC Twin Cities. No fewer than 27 bodies of water dot the layout, bringing lots of big numbers into play and highlighting the venue's risk-reward profile.
Thunderstorms are in the forecast for much of the week, and the resulting soft conditions should make the greens pretty accepting on approach and will give bombers an advantage off the tee.
Let's dig into the course and see what stats we can use to build our daily fantasy lineups this week.
Course and Tournament Info
Course: TPC Twin Cities
Distance: 7,468 yards
Tees/Fairways/Rough: Bentgrass, also featuring native prairie grass
It would not be surprising to find that some poa annua sneaks in, though the official website mentions only Bentgrass. The last three non-majors have been played in the northern part of the continent -- Detroit Golf Club, TPC River Highlands, and Hamilton Golf & Country Club -- and each admitted some annual grasses creeping in.
TPC Twin Cities ranked inside the top five in birdies made in each of the last five years on the Champions Tour, though it remains to be seen how drastically the added distance will impact scoring. Certainly one fewer par 5 will curb the birdie-fest, but if conditions are friendly, these guys can go low regardless of the length.
Most of that length comes on the par 3s (all over 175 yards) and par 5s (all over 590 yards). There is a decent blend of distances and styles across the par 4s, but seven are between 440-500 yards and none are longer than the 500-yard third hole.
As with last week, we have to take our best guesses on course comparisons. The three venues picked above can certainly compare given the climate and grass types, and the other two recent courses in the RBC Canadian Open -- Glen Abbey Golf Club and the Blue Course at Royal Montreal Golf Club -- also come to mind in that regard. None of those can match the length here, though. The Blue Course at Congressional Country Club (former host of the Buick Open/Quicken Loans National) may be the best comparison for grass types, length, and layout.
These stats will be key to success in the 3M Open at TPC Twin Cities.
|Key Stats for the 3M Open at TPC Twin Cities|
|Strokes Gained: Tee to Green|
|Strokes Gained: Approach|
|Birdies or Better Gained|
|Strokes Gained: Par 5s|
|Proximity Gained from 175+ yards|
Pretty basic stuff here, much like last week with the added proximity stats. Tee to green with an emphasis on approach worked at the Detroit Golf Club and should do just fine here as well. Given the yardage at TPC Twin Cities, long second shots will be the norm and all four par 3s are captured in the key range over 175 yards. Birdie-making, as covered above, will be absolutely essential as the scores could look a lot like last week if this course isn't fully Tour-ready.
Kenny Perry shot 11-under par on the four par 5s in his win on the Champions Tour at the 3M Championship finale last year. Even with one of those opportunities taken away, look for the winner to be among the elite in par 5 scoring this week and prioritize golfers who do well on those holes when building your daily fantasy rosters.
Course History Studs
Tom Lehman is a Minnesota native and was T10 and T28 the last two years at the 3M Championship; he also helped oversee the renovations last year. He hasn't made a cut on the PGA Tour in over five years.
Other golfers with Minnesota ties: Troy Merritt played his college golf at Winona State, about two hours from TPC Twin Cities. Tom Hoge won back-to-back Minnesota Amateur State titles in 2009-2010. Tim Herron is another Minnesotan. He's old and not good, but his nickname is "Lumpy," which is just a great nickname.
Mike Rodden is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Mike Rodden also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mike_rodden. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.