Welcome back to Golf News Net's weekly fantasy golf picks. Each week of the European Tour season, we'll present our top picks for that week's tournament and make recommendations for DraftKings' one-week fantasy leagues.
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The European Tour heads to Italy for the next stop on the continental European swing, with the Italian Open. The purse has doubled for the event this year, part of the deal the European Tour made with Italy so it can host the 2022 Ryder Cup. Last week's winner Joost Luiten, who we had for you in our picks along with Bernd Wiesberger and other high finishers, is in the field as are Martin Kaymer, Danny Willett and Lee Westwood.
Each week, we'll provide our picks and analysis, with our GNN Plus subscribers getting access to our searchable database of PGA Tour results from 2011-present, our top-15 finish chart and season-long trends on DraftKings valuations. They'll be available at your disposal as part of a growing set of tools to help in your research.
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2016 KLM Open top 10 fantasy golf picks
1. Martin Kaymer -- A runner-up here last year, the German has plenty of confidence coming off an affirmative Ryder Cup captain's pick.
2. Joost Luiten -- The KLM Open winner is riding high after a closing 63 in the Netherlands got him his home championship for a second time. Good record in this event.
3. Matt Fitzpatrick -- Fifth and seventh in his last two European Tour starts, and he was T-3 at this venue last year.
4. Lee Westwood -- Westwood just seems to be going about his business like nothing special is about to happen in a few weeks. Got a captain's pick that he knew he'd get.
5. Scott Hend -- Hend keeps putting himself in position to win and is coming up short, but that's a guy you want on your team for big points.
6. David Lipsky -- The American is a putting genius, and he's played well in his last two European Tour starts. He likes the continental European events.
7. Nicolas Colsaerts -- Colsaerts has been modest sine his third-place-per-month stretch in May, June and July. However, he's been a top-25 staple on the European Tour with a good Italian Open record.
8. Pablo Larrazabal -- The Spaniard has top-20s in his last two European Tour starts, coming to an event he likes.
9. Romain Wattel -- This is a horse-for-tournament pick. He's the lone player in the field with three top-15 finishes in the Italian Open in the last five years.
10. Mike Lorenzo-Vera -- The Frenchman is playing well, with top-12 finishes in the Czech Republic and the Netherlands.
Also worth a look: Tyrrell Hatton, Byeong-hun An
My DraftKings team for this week:
1. Matt Fitzpatrick - $10,000
2. Nicolas Colsaerts - $8,700
3. Pablo Larrazabal - $7,900
4. David Lipsky - $7,800
5. Romain Wattel - $7,200
6. Mike Lorenzo-Vera - $7,100
We start by looking at the recent past, back at players who have finished inside the top 15 in the last five European Tour events. Here are the players in this week's field with the most top-15 finishes in the last five European Tour events:
- David Drysdale - 2 - T-13 Scottish Open, T-12 European Masters
- David Lipsky - 2 - 6th Czech Masters, T-3 Made in Denmark
- Martin Kaymer - 2 - T-13 Scottish Open, T-6 Made in Denmark
- Matt Fitzpatrick - 2 - 5th Czech Masters, T-7 European Masters
- Mike Lorenzo-Vera - 2 - T-12 European Masters, T-8 KLM Open
- Mikko Ilonen - 2 - T-13 Scottish Open, T-12 European Masters
- Richard Sterne - 2 - T-13 Scottish Open, T-10 Made in Denmark
- Robert Karlsson - 2 - T-7 Czech Masters, T-15 Made in Denmark
- Scott Hend - 2 - 2nd European Masters, T-4 KLM Open
We're also interested in the players in the field that have finished in the top 15 at the Italian Open multiple times in the last five years, keeping in mind we're at a venue this year for just the second time:
- Gary Boyd - 2
- Nicolas Colsaerts - 2
- Martin Kaymer - 2
- Pablo Larrazabal - 2
- Joost Luiten - 2
- Matteo Manassero - 2
- Richie Ramsay - 2
- Jaco Van Zyl - 2
- Romain Wattel - 3
Also, here are the players from last year's top 15 back in the field at the same venue again this year:
1. Rikard Karlberg
2. Martin Kaymer
T3. Lucas Bjerregaard
T3. Jens Fahrbring
T3. Matthew Fitzpatrick
T3. Joakim Lagergren
T3. David Lipsky
T3. Danny Willett
T3. Fabrizio Zanotti
10. Romain Wattel
T11. Miguel Angel Jimenez
T11. Roope Kakko
T11. Lorenzo Scalise
T14. Jason Scrivener
T14. Jaco Van Zyl
Ideally, we want to find players who are both playing well now and have a history of playing well at this championship. Our guy? Martin Kaymer.
DraftKings salaries change from week to week, depending on field strength and size, as well a player's recent record and their history on a course. It's in looking at how a salary changes over time that we might get some clues as to players that could be a little overrated or underrated.
We're looking here at the players who are salaried at $1,000 or more than their season average:
- Julien Quesne
- Joakim Lagergren
- Hao-Tong Li
- Alejandro Canizares
- Scott Hend
- Fabrizio Zanotti
Here are players who have multiple top 15s in the last five European Tour (specific) events who are playing less than their average salary this week:
- Mikko Ilonen - 2 - $267 BELOW
- Richard Sterne - $467 BELOW
- Robert Karlsson - $271 BELOW