The Loop

Fantasy Fix: Chris Kirk is the man to beat at the Sony Open

January 14, 2015

Did you get your 2015 fantasy golf season off to a strong start? Good for you, but now it's about to get a lot tougher. The PGA Tour remains in Hawaii this week, however, there will be five times the number of players in the field at the Sony Open. Who are the chosen few we're expecting big things from at Waialae Country Club? Here's who we're going with in our Yahoo! league:

Starters -- (A-List): Harris English. English is making his 2015 debut in an event where he's finished fourth and T-9 the past two years. We expected more in 2014 after two wins in 2013, but think a big year could still be in store for the Georgia native, who doesn't turn 26 until this summer.

(B-List): Chris Kirk. How about that 62 (11 under) in Monday's final round at Kapalua's Plantation Course? Fresh off that round, Kirk arrives at Waialae, where he's never shot over par in 16 rounds. Kirk has shot 66 or better in five of last seven rounds, finishing solo second and T-5 the past two years. Quite simply, he's our favorite to win this week.


(B-List): Jimmy Walker. The defending champ looked like he'd island hop from Maui on a one-tournament winning streak until letting a three-shot lead slip away. He sounds like a man ready to bounce back from a close call. Keep in mind, he made just two bogeys in four days at Kapalua.

(C-List): Russell Henley. Two years ago, Henley set the tournament scoring record in his rookie season debut. In his first start of 2015, he showed no offseason rust with a T-3.

Bench/Backups: Matt Every, Hideki Matsuyama, Charles Howell III, and Tim Clark.

Knockout/One-and-done pick: Charles Howell III. Kirk may be our pick to win this week, but we'd rather stash him for later. Howell, meanwhile, has never won in Hawaii, but he's been in contention as much as anyone. In 13 starts in this event, he has eight top 10s, including runner-ups in 2012 and 2007 and T-3s in 2013 and 2005. Last year he really slumped, finishing only T-8. Sounds like he's due for another top three.

Previously used: Geoff Ogilvy (Hyundai).