Fantasy golf power rankings: 2018 CIMB Classic

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Fantasy golf power rankings: 2018 CIMB Classic

Fantasy

Fantasy golf power rankings: 2018 CIMB Classic

Set your alarm clocks.

The PGA Tour heads to TPC Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia this week for the CIMB Classic. Pat Perez is the defending champion, but Justin Thomas and Ryan Moore – who lost in a playoff last week at the Safeway Open – have each won this event twice since it became an official PGA Tour stop in 2013. Perez, meanwhile, has just one top-25 finish since the WGC-Mexico Championship.

TPC Kuala Lumpur isn’t the toughest of golf courses, ranking 41st out of 51 course used last season on Tour. Low scores mean fantasy golf gamers need to pick guys who aren’t afraid to go low. ShotLink isn’t used this week, but statistically, it’s safe to go with players who putt well, give themselves plenty of wedge opportunities and rank highly in birdie average, both overall and on par 5s, as  the par-72 TPC Kuala Lumpur has four of them.

Here are the top 25 players to consider in Malaysia:

1. Justin Thomas: Was T-17 last year after winning two straight CIMB titles. Owns a 67 scoring average. Ranked sixth in par-5 scoring and 14th in birdie average in the playoffs last season. Has hit top 12 in five of last six Tour starts.

2. Xander Schauffele: Tied for third in his CIMB debut last year and closed playoffs with back-to-back top-10s.

3. Ryan Moore: Won the CIMB in 2014 and ’15, and hasn’t been worse than T-17 since. Struggled with flatstick in playoffs last season, but he was eighth in strokes gained putting at Safeway, where he tied for second.

4. Paul Casey: Has gotten better in each of his four starts here, tying for seventh last year. T-11 at Tour Championship before playing well at Ryder Cup.

5. Keegan Bradley: Top-10s in three of four CIMB starts, including runner-up finish last year. Ranked 11th in birdie average and 14th in par-5 scoring in the playoffs last season. BMW champ followed victory with T-26 at Tour Championship.

6. Billy Horschel: Hasn’t played here since T-37 in 2015. Also was T-11 in 2014. Ranked second in birdie average during the playoffs last season as he posted three top-3s.

7. Gary Woodland: Back-to-back runner-up finishes in 2014 and ’15, but his best CIMB finish since is T-28 last year. Six of last seven Tour finishes have been in the top 25.

8. Cameron Smith: Has finished T-5 in two of three career CIMB starts. Posted top-3s in two playoff events, too.

9. Kevin Na: Posted consecutive top-3s before failing to crack top 25 in each of his last two CIMB starts. Led the Tour in strokes gained putting during the playoffs last season and also was 15th in birdie average. Has top-25s in four of last five Tour starts.

10. Rafa Cabrera Bello: Under par in all eight career rounds here as he’s shared 10th in both starts. Top-20s in four of last six worldwide starts.

PORTLAND, OR - AUGUST 19: Sungjae Im of South Korea reacts after sinking his eagle putt attempt on the 11th hole during the final round of the WinCo Foods Portland Open on August 19, 2018 in Portland, Oregon. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)

Sungjae Im (Steve Dykes/Getty Images)

11. Sungjae Im: Ranked sixth in strokes gained putting and ninth in strokes gained off the tee at Safeway. Tied for fourth in Tour debut as a member.

12. Danny Lee: Finished T-7 last year at CIMB. Ranked 15th in strokes gained putting at Safeway, where he was T-10.

13. Brandt Snedeker: Hasn’t played this event since 2011, when it was still an Asian Tour tournament. He was T-13 that year. Struggled with his ballstriking in Sunday collapse at Safeway, but still finished the week 19th in strokes gained tee to green.

14. J.B. Holmes: Ninth at Safeway was his first top-10 since Travelers. Ranked eighth in par-5 scoring in the playoffs last season and was 10th in strokes gained tee to green at Safeway. Was T-49 at TPC Kuala Lumpur in 2015.

15. Kevin Tway: Safeway Open winner was T-32 in CIMB debut last year. Ranked third in strokes gained tee to green at Safeway.

16. C.T. Pan: Has cracked top 4 in two of last four starts. Was T-17 in CIMB debut last year.

17. Peter Uihlein: Opened with 73 in his CIMB debut last year before rallying for T-10 finish. Ranked 16th in par-5 scoring in the playoffs last season. Missed cut at Safeway.

18. Emiliano Grillo: Followed T-17 finish in CIMB debut with T-54 last year. Struggled with the putter at Safeway, but was 15th in strokes gained tee to green. Has just one top-10 since Colonial.

19. Kyle Stanley: Nothing better than T-19 in three appearances at TPC Kuala Lumpur. Did notch pair of top-15s in playoffs.

20. Brendan Steele: T-26 or better, including a T-3 in 2016, in four trips to TPC Kuala Lumpur. Struggling mightily with the putter, but he did rank sixth in strokes gained off the tee at Safeway.

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