Recap of last weeks bets
|To Win||Sam Burns||Won|
|Top Ten Finish||Roger Sloan||Lost|
|Tournament Match Bet||Sergio Garcia||Lost|
|Top Rest of the World Player||Emiliano Grillo||Lost|
Profit/Loss (This week) – Profit of $110 to a $10 Stake
Profit/Loss (Overall) – Loss of $97 to a $10 Stake
On to this week’s event.
Brooks Koepka and Scottie Scheffler are the first members of Steve Stricker’s Ryder Cup team to return to the day job at the Shriners Children’s Open, less than a fortnight after their historic triumph over Europe.
These two join Burns, Abraham Ancer, and previous champions Webb Simpson and Kevin Na in a formidable field. Victory for either of these two would continue the pattern of jilted Ryder Cup aspirations, and they can battle on a par 71 course that plays much shorter in the thin air of Las Vegas. While Na’s record-breaking putter performance three years ago at TPC Summerlin is a reminder of what that club can occasionally do, a broader view shows that, while simple on paper, TPC Summerlin is a good test of ball-striking. There are some risky approach shots on this course, and last year’s play-off three all performed admirably with their irons.
DeChambeau led the field by a long shot and rated 45th in putting when he won here in 2018. Cantlay was placed 32nd a year ago, and shock champion Rod Pampling was ranked 39th in 2016. Even though Koepka out-putted him, Pampling’s iron play was significantly superior. n It’s a common misconception that a low-scoring tournament played on an off-the-shelf TPC with minimal rough and little in the way of decision-making equals a putting contest, but this isn’t the case. Shorter hitters may contend on this course thanks to good iron play and, yes, the putter, but victors have typically needed to gain close to two strokes every round with their ball striking.
On to our picks for this year…
Cameron Davis +10000
From Sam to Cam, Davis, that is. I’m a keen admirer of this young Australian who had a breakthrough year last season by winning his maiden title at the Rocket Mortgage Classic. He also took the third spot at the Barclays and sixth at the Sanderson Farm Championship, although he couldn’t follow that performance up last week and ultimately missed the cut. He has played this event twice, and while he hasn’t set the world alight, he hasn’t played poorly either. He shot a 65 in the first round last year but lacked the experience to go and dominate from the front. If he was to do that again this year, I have every confidence he could go on to have a wonderful week. He was excellent off the tee last season, and he ranked second for going for the green, which is required around here. His wedge play isn’t the best, but that hopefully shouldn’t become a factor here, and he undoubtedly knows his way around the greens. Davis also made more eagles than any other player on Tour last season, and with most of these par fives reachable in two, he has every chance of maintaining that record.
Paul Casey +400
Paul Casey was near back to his best last season as he finished inside the top ten in seven of his 20 tournaments. While he missed the cut here last year, he does tend to start the season well as he hasn’t placed outside the top 17 in his opening event of the season for the past five years, so expect him to hit the ground running. There is very little Casey can’t do, but he does get let down by his putter quite often. If he can get that going this week, I see no reason for him not to go close.
Cameron Tringale +700
Sticking with the Cam theme, this time, our prop bet involves Cameron Tringale. Tringale is edging closer to a victory this season as he halved his season-opening finish of 22nd last week when he placed 11th at the Sanderson Farm Championship. I’m backing him to half that deficit again and place him inside the top five this week. He finished 19th here last year after shooting a 66 on the first three days of the Open. Unfortunately, he couldn’t back that up on the final day. However, he did finish as the runner-up here in 2016, so he likes this golf course. He shot a 62 last season, and I could see him replicating something like that on a course as easy as this one.