Looking for 2019 Desert Classic picks, either for betting or fantasy golf games like DraftKings, FanDuel, Yahoo, Golf Channel or the PGA Tour?
We have your 2019 Desert Classic rankings and expert picks, as we do each week of the PGA Tour season.
The PGA Tour starts the West Coast Swing back in the mainland United States, with this week’s Desert Classic in the California desert. The old Bob Hope Classic, played last year for the final time as the CareerBuilder Challenge, has a new name for one year while the search for a title sponsor continues. The same rotation remains, with PGA West’s Stadium Course again hosting the tournament.
This week, every player in the 156-man field plays one round on each of the three courses in the rotation before a cut to the top 70 and ties for the final round back at the Stadium Course.
Jon Rahm defends a title he won last year in a playoff, while Phil Mickelson and Justin Rose look to take home a trophy.
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2019 Desert Classic rankings: Top 10 picks
1. Justin Rose — Rose is the class player in the field, so he has to be tops on this list. We have to consider he’s playing with new irons thanks to his new deal with Honma, but that shouldn’t be a problem.
2. Jon Rahm — Rahm is defending champion, and that basically forced his hand to play here again. His driving should be a big asset, particularly at the Stadium Course.
3. Patrick Cantlay — The Californian doesn’t have a high finish here to speak of, but he’s become such a consistent worldwide player in his comeback that you have to expect solid results.
4. Charles Howell III — CH3 has a great early-season track record. You pick him early in the season (fall or early start of a new year), so you can do it here with confidence. Characteristically great finish at Sony.
5. Phil Mickelson — Consider this a tepid ranking of the unofficial tournament host. Mickelson played here every year for a reason, but we haven’t seen him since he won The Match. What are we going to get?
6. Andrew Putnam — A great run against Kuchar at Waialae, coupled with a solid upper-third finish at Kapalua has him on a good streak. He aims for the top 50 in the OWGR, and he can get there.
7. Patton Kizzire — Something has clicked for Kizzire in the changes he’s been making in his game. He’s been in three top-15 finishes in a row, and I like him in these weaker fields.
8. Lucas Glover — Glover was hot in the fall, and while he doesn’t have a great track record in the desert, it’s good enough to warrant a spot here.
9. Adam Hadwin — Hadwin closed 2018 very well, with a string of top-16 finishes. Despite that, he’s lost OWGR ground. Odd. But he’s been in the top six here the last three years, so he’s a good pick.
10. Kevin Kisner — Kisner should be mentioned here, even though he’s not been playing his best so far in this season. In concept, he shouldn’t need his great short game to score in typically perfect conditions.
My primary DraftKings lineup
- Andrew Putnam – $9,700
- Patton Kizzire – $8,700
- Lucas Glover – $8,600
- Hudson Swafford – $8,300
- Bud Cauley – $7,400
- Anders Albertson – $7,200
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