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Author: Action Network Staff
The PGA TOUR’s swing season is, pardon the pun, in full swing.
The fields during the fall portion of the 2020/21 season may not feature the same amount of starpower that we see at the marquee events, but ask any avid golf bettor about the autumn tournaments and they’ll tell you that there’s some serious value to be had at tournaments like the Sanderson Farms Championship.
With very few elite players teeing it up, this tournament should be wide open. Here are our favorite outright bets, sleeper picks, prop bets and matchups at the 2020 Sanderson Farms Championship:
Doc Redman +3300 ($10 bet wins $330)
Though he might not be as low-priced as we’d like, Redman is developing into a world-class ball-striker before our very eyes, currently ranking second in strokes gained on approach shots after ranking 11th during the recently completed season. He’s been knocking on the door recently, too, with a pair of third-place finishes in his last three starts.
There should be some correlation between this course and Sedgefield CC, host of the Wyndham Championship, where Redman claimed the first of those two T-3 results, so don’t be surprised to see him up there again.
Brian Harman +3500
Harman has been in a good run of form over the past couple months, notching a couple of top-15 finishes in two FedEx Cup events.
It’s tough to trust many of the names at the top of the board in this field, so I don’t mind dipping a little further down the board and taking a chance with a guy like Harman on a course that should fit his eye and is played on his preferred putting surface.
Will Zalatoris +2100
We’ve gotten two looks at Will Zalatoris recently and he has not disappointed. The Korn Ferry standout followed up a sixth-place finish at the U.S. Open with an eighth-place finish at the Corales Championship.
Finishing eighth at Corales may seem like a disappointment for the tournament-favorite, but it was the way he did it that left me impressed. Zalatoris needed a top-10 to qualify for this week’s event, and he knew it going into Sunday, where he fired a bogey-free 7-under 65 to climb into 8th.
I love that Zalatoris truly has something to play for as he seeks status on TOUR, and now we get a little better odds at an event that rewards his strength, top notch iron play.
I’m in on Zalatoris for his breakthrough this week.
Sam Burns +2700
Bermuda Burns baby!
Since the restart, Sam Burns has been one of the better golfers on TOUR and seems to be due for a win. He was a popular play last week but I laid off because I didn’t love the course fit. Historically, Burns is a much better player on bermudagrass gaining 1.943 Strokes Gained: Bermuda compared to 0.654 Strokes Gained: Total.
His 7th-place finish at the Safeway a few weeks ago was encouraging; and at Corales he shot a 66 on Sunday which will give him some forward momentum. Burns also has some good course history with a third-place finish here in 2018. He had a great showing despite losing 2.1 strokes putting, which is something I don’t anticipate happening again.
This week I am targeting golfer’s who can bomb it off the tee and catch a hot putter. No one in this field fits that description better than the NCAA Division I Jack Nicklaus National Player of the Year (2016-2017). Country Club of Jackson is the perfect track for Sam Burns to get his first career PGA TOUR victory.
Cameron Percy +10000 ($10 bet wins $1,000)
Each of the two non-major winners in the 2020-21 season so far were 200/1 pre-tourney, according to golfodds.com, so there’s some definite benefits to combing through the big prices at these fall events and looking for value.
I won’t go quite that deep, but Percy is the type of player we’re looking for this week — he ranked an impressive 22nd in strokes gained on approach shots this past season, has a pair of top-20s in his last four starts at this event and owns top-25s in his last three starts that he’s finished (there was a WD, too) over the past two months.
Patton Kizzire +17500
Patton Kizzire is another guy I like to target when the TOUR shifts back to Bermuda surfaces. He’s normally right around average with the putter elsewhere, but on Bermuda, he gains about a half-stroke per round.
Kizzire has quietly brought the approach game back around, gaining strokes in that category in each of his last three events prior to a made-cut at Corales (which doesn’t deploy shot-tracking data).
Lucas Glover +7000
This number is a touch short of a typical longshot, but it’s just too good of a price to pass up without discussing. Other books have Glover as low as +4500 and he comes in off of a strong 17th-place finish at the U.S. Open two weeks ago. He was able to dial in his ball-striking at Winged Foot as he gained 3.8 strokes on the field in that category, and was white hot with his putter.
The putter almost always tells the story for Glover, and he hasn’t lost strokes on the greens at the Country Club of Jackson in any of his last three appearances.
I’m taking the good number and a player that seems to be rounding into form, during a time of year where Lucas Glover usually thrives.
Kristoffer Ventura +8000
Ventura was 45-1 last week in a very similar field. A few players were added at the top of the board but I still think getting him at almost double the price this week is great value.
Country Club of Jackson should be a much better fit for Ventura as he is a South Florida resident and plays a lot of his golf on Bermudagrass greens.
He fits the mold of bombers who can putt as he ranks 5th in this field in driving distance, 9th in Strokes Gained: Off the tee, and 1st in Strokes Gained: Par 5, while being the 20th best putter in the field on Bermudagrass greens (all stats over the past 24 rounds).
Ventura is exactly the type of player I am targeting and I love the discounted price we are getting this week.
Will Zalatoris Top-Five Finish (+400)
Too much, too soon?
You can be excused for having Zalatoris fatigue over the past few weeks, but it’s not going to subside just yet. I’m not ready to anoint him the Next Big Thing, but I do think he’s already one of those guys who can ball-strike his way to some impressive results without having to own more than an average short game.
The truth is, this week’s venue sets up way better for him than last week, when he finished T-8, thanks to a final-round 65. When he was asked what was different on Sunday, he commented, “I had my back up against the wall.” I’ve never understood criticism for those who “back-door” into top-five nd top-10 finishes – I mean, aren’t you supposed to play your best golf when it means the most? – but I do think we should be very aware of this ability when it comes to prop bets.
In fact, if you wanted to hold off and take Zalatoris for a live top-five after R1 or R2, well, I don’t dislike that idea at all.
Brian Harman Top-20 Finish (+160)
I’m high on Harman this week, but I also don’t trust many of the other guys at the top of the board, especially at their current prices.
Harman has been in a good run of form over the past couple months, notching a couple of top-15 finishes in two FedEx Cup events, so against a weaker field his talent should propel him to a solid finish.
He was also 14th here a year ago, when the form wasn’t in nearly as good of shape as it is now, so I’ll take a shot here.
Wesley Bryan Top-10 Finish (+1200)
Wes Bryan has made a bit of a resurgence over the summer, flashing the great iron play that made him so successful in 2017. He has gained strokes on approach in each of his last five appearances, including gaining more than two strokes with his irons in four of those five.
Bryan seems to be finding his game off-the-tee as well as he has gained strokes in each of his last three tournaments in the category that has previously hindered him the most.
Bryan is an extreme longshot to come through on top, but he definitely has the talent and ability to find himself in the top-10 on Sunday.
Henrik Stenson Top-10 Finish (+550)
I was skeptical about Henrik last week. He hadn’t been playing very well going into the event and I wasn’t sure why he chose to play at the Corales. He ended up having a pretty good week finishing in 21st.
At the top of his game, Stenson is arguably the most talented player in this field. His issue at this point in his career is playing in enough events to get some forward momentum and get himself into good form. With the encouraging performance last week, I think he is in a good spot to build off of the solid showing and be even better this week.
Henrik is one of the best iron players on TOUR and should give himself plenty of birdie chances. We are getting a steep discount in price compared to what his skill set would indicate so I think this is a good spot to take a chance on the Swede.
Talor Gooch (-112) over Pat Perez
His ball-striking numbers last season weren’t as good as they’ve been in the past, but Talor Gooch is a very good iron player, which is an obvious strength on this course.
I don’t love the idea fading Perez, who’s been playing decent, but Gooch is the play here in a fairly even matchup.
Sungjae Im (+115) over Scottie Scheffler
Odds via the Westgate SuperBook
Overall, I think Sungjae Im is a better player than Scottie Scheffler.
Im hit a bit of a slump during the summer, but we saw a dramatic improvement with his ball-striking at the U.S. Open where he gained a little over eight strokes. He’s also shown he putts his best on Bermuda, while that was Scheffler’s worst surface during his rookie season.
Combine all that with a runner-up finish from Im here a year ago and I think it’s worth it to back him at plus-money.
Denny McCarthy (+100) over Chez Reavie
I’m usually one to bet on bad putters and hope the variance catches them on a good week. This pick is taking things in the opposite direction as I’m taking an elite putter, especially on bermuda, to outlast Chez Reavie who has struggled with the flatstick.
It’s not all putter for McCarthy though as he improved his ball-striking over the last two months, flashing some really good numbers especially on approach.
The odds show this to be a lopsided matchup towards Reavie, but they’ve been pretty similar players of late with the putter standing out as the difference.
Sam Burns (-118) over Corey Conners
I think Burns has a very strong chance to win this week and should absolutely get into contention. Alternatively, Conners has been out of sorts lately missing the cut last week at Corales and missing four of his past six starts overall.
Conners seems mispriced being grouped with someone who’s been playing some of the best golf of his career lately in Sam Burns. I am siding with the golfer in great form in the matchup.
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Author: Action Network Staff