Golfbet Insider: PGA Championship
10 Min Read
Written by Rob Bolton @RobBoltonGolf
The PGA Championship at restored Oak Hill Country Club’s East Course in a mixed bag of weather conditions serves up a combo platter that exemplifies why I’ve always asked three questions before offering advice to any gamer.
1) What format do you play?
2) Who else is on your roster (if applicable)?
3) Are you pacing or chasing?
All fantasy is relative, so the same golfer for one owner may not be a smart selection for another owner even if they’re competing in the same format. Other restrictions can apply, so none of us are operating in a vacuum, but to paraphrase an old slogan for the tournament, this is a major, so many of the decisions you’ve made previously likely were influenced by the timing and construct of it.
Focusing only on PGA TOUR Fantasy Golf, there are only three tournaments remaining in Segment 3, and the Memorial Tournament presented by Workday concludes it is a Designated event. This means that many of your targets at Oak Hill are highly likely to appear again at Muirfield Village. If you can’t (or don’t) plan to burn a start at both, then this is where the other variables step forward.
Overall fantasy scoring projects to be lower at the PGA Championship, but in the context of the Segment and the season, it’ll compare similarly to the Memorial even with a slightly higher output of FedEx bonus points correlated to the actual finish this week, so call it a wash. Therefore, where you are positioned in your overall ranking rises as the priority to guide you into a plan.
All gamers will have numerous notables at their disposal at both tournaments, but much like how ownership strategies during the FedExCup Playoffs (in Segment 4) require working backward for some, that approach has merit now.
Although some golfers will cancel on cachet alone, front-runners won’t be keen on taking risks. This opens the playing field for gamers in pursuit. If you are chasing, there are three favorable components to lean more on Memorial than Oak Hill.
The first is the fact that there are 156 golfers in the PGA Championship, which is the deepest major of the year, while there are only 120 at the Memorial. The cut at the PGA is low 70 and ties (or no worse than 44.87 percent of the field), while the cut at Memorial is low 65 and ties (54.17 percent). That math is your friend to avoid zeroes in the third and final rounds.
Unlike Muirfield Village, course experience is a non-factor at Oak Hill. Yes, the cream will rise as it always does, but gamers who prefer this edge don’t have it this week. Saving successful course history for Memorial cannot hurt.
Lastly, many more valuable non-members are in play in western New York than what will be available in central Ohio. Since the restriction of three starts per non-member is not a concern, rostering multiple non-members is a method to save a last start for a smart play at Memorial.
The throughline to all of this is that blending these considerations to some degree is better than, say, an all-out stack in DFS. That’s a different format with different forces to encourage that philosophy, and everyone resets to zero every week. For most of us not dueling in customized short seasons, PGA TOUR Fantasy Golf is all about the long game.
POWER RANKINGS WILD CARD
Cameron Young (+120 = Top 20) … The fact that he’s still a non-winner on the PGA TOUR doesn’t help his value – he’s +550 in the outright market; Tommy Fleetwood is second-shortest among non-winners at +800 – but it’s entirely explainable given how comfortable he’s been on the biggest stages. There are any number of metrics to corroborate it, too, but only results can help measure the temperature of the ice water beneath the skin. Still, getting plus value for this finish is outstanding on a course that rewards his strengths, so take it. If there’s anything cryptic about him this week, it’s why he shed the beard in advance of a weather forecast for which it’d come in handy.
Odds were sourced on Wednesday, May 17, at 6:00 a.m. ET. For live odds, visit BetMGM.
NOTE: These are notables who are not included in my Power Rankings or Sleepers. Connect with me on Twitter if you want analysis, insight and opinion for anyone else.
Collin Morikawa (+138 = Top 20) … Not that he’s done it on purpose, but his latest skid no doubt elevates the value of this prop. The simple of it is that he’s among the best tee-to-green players on the planet. With small greens that are unfamiliar, his skill set plays up. There’s also the not-at-all-insignificant fact that he’s won two majors and has recorded another five top 10s and a T18 in a total of just 13 starts in the series.
Sam Burns (-145 = Top 40) … Until he showcases his best self in the majors, this is the responsible default. As a professional, he’s 7-for-10 in the series with just one top 25 (T20, 2022 PGA). That’s a lot of reps that have resulted in torn-up tickets. He also presents opposite of the puzzle. His tee-to-green game is average because it’s been inconsistent, whereas his touch around and on the greens is terrific. It puts too much pressure on a skill that matters too much with small greens.
PARLAY: Brandon Wu and Adam Svensson (+1000 = Both Top 40) … Love that this kind of parlay can exist thanks to the major. I already had cited Wu for a top 40 in Sleepers, so my angle on Svensson is multi-fold. He’s above average and well-balanced throughout his bag, he’s already delivered in deep fields (T9=Genesis; T24=Arnold Palmer; T13=PLAYERS; T27=Wells Fargo) and he’s a fish in water in the northern climes and sensory experiences a short distance from his native Canada.
NOTE: Not everything needs a setup. For a variety of reasons, these lines are too enticing to ignore.
PARLAY: Justin Thomas, Max Homa and Matt Fitzpatrick (+115 = All to Make the Cut)
PARLAY: Rickie Fowler, Wyndham Clark and Tom Kim (+165 = All to Make the Cut)
Corey Conners (+200 = Top Canadian)
Russell Henley (-110 = Top 40)
Shane Lowry (+110 = Top 40)
Hideki Matsuyama #1 (-135 = Top 40)
Hideki Matsuyama #2 (-225 = Top Japanese)
Seamus Power (+160 = Top 40)
RETURNING TO COMPETITION
Jordan Spieth … Beware the injured golfer? Yes! No matter what he says about his injured left wrist or how he practices, you’re on your own. Note that I didn’t even bother tagging him with an endorsement for as low as a top 40 (at -150) because what’s the point? BetMGM doesn’t have a Make/Miss the Cut market for him, either. So it goes. Shop elsewhere.
Kevin Kisner … Normally, he’d be a curious choice on a tough par 70, but he hasn’t made any noise since last summer, and even that was relative. He’s also coming off a mid-tournament WD at Harbour Town where he opened with 79. (An explanation wasn’t released.) Like Spieth, there is no Make/Miss the Cut market for the 39-year-old.
Andrew Putnam (+240 = Top 40) … In eight career starts in majors as a professional, he’s yet to crack a top 30, but he has been trending to do just that this year. An injured back forced him to walk off Quail Hollow during his first round two weeks ago, but I’m not giving up hope on the trajectory, especially at this value for this finish. He does everything too well not to justify the reach.
Ryan Fox (+200 = Top 40) … The non-member from New Zealand is a great reminder for newer gamers and bettors not to worry about a guy who last called it quits during a competition due to an illness, as he did during his opening round at Harbour Town a month ago. Save that early exit and a missed cut at TPC San Antonio, he’s hung up six top 30s in his last eight stroke-play starts worldwide. The wind and the cold also might increase his Strokes Gained: Floor. Consider that he prevailed at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship early last fall.
Robert MacIntyre (+260 = Top 40) … Although he was the defending champion in Italy two weeks ago, he played it safe and withdrew before his second round due to a sore back. The 26-year-old lefty from Scotland has enough seasoning in the majors to have built equity with us. He’s 10-for-10 in the series with three top 20s among six top 40s. He also was cruising along prior to the setback having gone T7-T6-T7 through Kenya, Japan and South Korea.
Tiger Woods … This Friday will mark one month since he underwent surgery on his right ankle.
Paul Casey … Missed the 2022 edition due to ongoing discomfort with his back. Had finished T2 in 2020 and T4 in 2021.
Rich Beem (2002), John Daly (1991), Jason Dufner (2013), Davis Love III (1997), Vijay Singh (1998, 2004) … All former winners of the PGA Championship but the 46-year-old Dufner is the only not already competing on the PGA TOUR Champions. He’s also the most recent winner at Oak Hill.
RECAP – AT&T Byron Nelson
Power Ranking Golfer = Result
1 Scottie Scheffler = T5
2 K.H. Lee = T50
3 Tom Kim = T34
4 Matt Kuchar = T43
5 Tom Hoge = T43
6 Jason Day = Win
7 Adam Scott = T8
8 Seamus Power = T19
9 Tyrrell Hatton = T5
10 Hideki Matsuyama = T23
11 Brandon Wu = T23
12 Christiaan Bezuidenhout = T23
13 Jimmy Walker = T74
14 Dylan Wu = MC
15 Adam Hadwin = T34
* - For the recommendations below, an asterisk represents a bet that won.
Golfer (recommended bet, if applicable) = Result
Brice Garnett (+250 = Top 40) = T77
*Vincent Norrman (+125 = Top 40) = T8
*Ryan Palmer (+120 = Top 40) = T8
Justin Suh (+250 = Top 20) = MC
*Carson Young (+240 = Top 40) = T14
Team (recommended bet) = Result
Wild Card: Min Woo Lee (-150 = Top 40) = MC
Also Starring: PARLAY: Si Woo Kim, Min Woo Lee and Taylor Montgomery (+160 = All to Make the Cut) = T2/MC/T50
Also Starring: Maverick McNealy (-200 = Make the Cut) = MC
*Also Starring: Nate Lashley (+110 = Top 40) = T23
Tap-in: PARLAY: Tom Hoge, Stephan Jaeger and Maverick McNealy (+200 = All to Make the Cut) = T43/T11/MC
*Tap-in: Aaron Baddeley (+225 = Top 40) = T23
Tap-in: MJ Daffue (+125 = Top 40) = MC
Tap-in: Will Gordon (+130 = Miss the Cut) = T70
Tap-in: Stephan Jaeger (+120 = Top Continental European) = T11 (Vincent Norrman = T8)
Tap-in: David Micheluzzi (+250 = Top 40) = T67
Tap-in: Aaron Rai (-110 = Top 40) = MC
Tap-in: Davis Riley (-145 = Top 40) = MC
Tap-in: Scott Stallings (-125 = Top 40) = MC
The PGA TOUR is committed to protecting our fans. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, the National Council on Problem Gambling operates a confidential toll-free hotline that you can reach by phone or text at 1-800-522-4700.