With the Clambake in the rearview mirror, the PGA Tour makes the trek from Pebble Beach to Los Angeles for what is now known as the Genesis Invitational. Formerly the Los Angeles Open, this newly minted “invitational” has a field of 120 players rather than 144. This week’s field is very strong, with the likes of Rory McIlroy, Justin Thomas, Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Jon Rahm, and Tiger Woods making appearances.
Riviera Country Club is one of the best courses on Tour; it tests every aspect of a player’s game and requires smart tactics off the tee and on approach. At over 7,300 yards, Riviera gives a slight edge to bombers, as shorter hitters will have plenty of mid- to long-iron shots into the firm greens.
Here are a few players to consider for your fantasy lineups this week:
Justin Rose $8,500
$8,500 for the world’s 10th-ranked player seems a bit disrespectful. His price should be more in line with those of Cantlay and Watson, both of whom are over $1,000 more. I’m guessing this low price has to do with the fact that Rose has played only one event in the U.S. this year, a missed cut at Torrey Pines. But Rose has a strong history at Riviera: he has finished 16th or better in four of his past five starts here. He’s an elite ball-striker who’s quite capable of negotiating the challenges of this course.
Colin Morikawa $8,100
Morikawa puts on a stripe show every week, and when his putter cooperates, he’ll often win. He leads the Genesis Invitational field in iron play, which will be key on this relatively long course that emphasizes precision on approach shots. A California native, Morikawa is familiar with Riviera; he lost in the Round of 16 of the U.S. Amateur here in 2017. $8,100 is way too cheap for a player of his consistency and upside.
If you don’t plan on rolling out DJ in a major this year, this is the best spot to use him on the 2020 PGA Tour schedule. Although Johnson struggled in tough weekend conditions at Pebble Beach, his game is rounding into form, and he has an astounding six top-four finishes in Los Angeles over the past 10 years.
After DJ, Watson is your next best One-and-Done option. Bubba is a horse for a couple of courses on the PGA Tour, and Riviera is definitely one of those courses. He has won this event three of the past six years. Plus, he has been on a hot streak lately: he placed third at TPC Scottsdale and sixth at Torrey Pines.