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Golf Barometer: Brandt Cashin' In Big

David Ferris

David Ferris

Ferris covers the PGA Tour for RotoWire. He is an award-winning sports writer and a veteran fantasy columnist. He also is a scratch golfer.

UPGRADE

Brandt Snedeker:
So much for the injury concerns - Snedeker now has four classy cashes in a row (all six figures or more), including last week's trophy hoist at the RBC Canadian Open. Snedeker's never going to wow anyone much off the tee (149th in distance), but with steely irons (23rd in GIR) and maybe the best putter in golf, he has a chance to contend on any track. Next up: bagging one of the majors, something he should tend to over the next 2-3 years.

Kyle Stanley:
There's been an all-or-nothing feel to the middle of his season - while Stanley only has a modest six cashes in his last 11 starts, four have been for six figures or more, including a T12 at the RBC Canadian Open. A long driver (297.4 yards a poke) and accurate irons (37th in GIR) are steering the story, though Stanley's judgment on the green has been somewhat erratic in his age-25 season. There's still a tremendous upside here; he's not afraid to be great.

Nicholas Thompson:
He's not teeing it up this week, and he's earned the break - Thompson had a run of 15 consecutive starts into the August schedule. While a modest eight cashes over that span isn't going to spark Player of the Year talk, Thompson nonetheless sits a respectable 71st in the FedEx Cup standings and 91st on the money list. He has a chance to help us during the fall season, that's the key takeaway here. The fantasy world needs ditchdiggers, too.

DOWNGRADE

Louie Oosthuizen:
Hip and neck problems finally have to be dealt with - he's going to take two months of down time before we see him on the course again. It's a no-brainer cut in standard formats, and we'll be bidding in the dark when Oostie's name comes up in the January calcutta. Maybe his one major victory is destined for the fluke file after all.

Steve Stricker:
Playing through a torn right hamstring? Gallant. Use him as a primary fantasy play? Nah, we're not that silly.

HOLDING STEADY

Hunter Mahan:
While it seemed dashing and decent to pull out of weekend contention so he could attend to the birth of his child, we also have to (perhaps cynically) note that Mahan is 161st in fourth-round scoring this year (and it's been a problem in recent seasons as well). This is not Mariano Rivera, folks. But maybe fatherhood will help Mahan be a better closer; you never know how this sort of real-life tweak will translate on the course.

Keegan Bradley:
The season might not look like much until you notice that Bradley has 14 cuts made and a sneaky $2.3 million in the bank (that's 12th on the money list). He's also the defending champion at Bridgestone, which means now's a logical time to dial him up in a one-and-done league. The most impressive thing about Bradley for our numbers racket: he's capable of performing like a second-round pick even in a "down" season. Validation comes in surprising packages.

Aaron Baddeley:
After 10 straight trunk slams (and nine straight tournaments over par), it was downright shocking to see Bads grab a T9 check in the Great White North, pocketing $151K. The putter was singing again, the gait looked positive again. OK, OK, it wasn't the strongest field we'll see all season. But if Baddeley can do something at the Reno-Tahoe side event this week, we'll reopen his file.

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