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13D AGO

Sleeper Picks: Valero Texas Open

3 Min Read

Sleeper Picks

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    Written by Rob Bolton @RobBoltonGolf

    NOTE: Sleeper Picks did not appear in Rob’s Power Rankings, but each presents value for the bet specified.

    Outright

    Victor Perez (+6600) … Suffice it to say that he’s disposed of the ghosts that haunted him in previous efforts on the PGA TOUR. Now as a first-time member via the DP World Tour, the Frenchman recorded three top 20s in the last month, including a career-best T3 at the Puerto Rico Open. He’s 27th on the PGA TOUR in total Driving, third in Greens in Regulation and 16th in Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green. Those measurements support the fit for his debut at TPC San Antonio, but the fact that he’s a three-time winner on his home circuit fortifies the foundation for an expectation to break through for his first TOUR title here. Four of the last six champions of the Valero Texas Open were first-time winners. Even more of a push is that he’s not one of the 30 in the field exempt into next week’s Masters, but a win would punch the last ticket.

    Top 5

    Patrick Rodgers (+1800) … This would be a repeat of last year’s result. In fact, he’s back to avenge a solo fifth despite his position as the outright leader after the second and third rounds. What’s more, the 31-year-old veteran of 258 PGA TOUR starts as a professional, arrives with a similarly uninspiring form that preceded his close call here a year ago. Like Perez, Rodgers also is in pursuit of his breakthrough victory but he’s in his sixth appearance at TPC San Antonio. Familiarity with the greens should allow his uncharacteristically average putting upon arrival the opportunity to reemerge as a weapon. His length off the tee also will put shorter clubs into his hands and allow his lights-out accuracy on approach to give him more than enough looks to score.

    Top 10

    Keith Mitchell (+450) … Because he’s so likable, it’s en vogue to invest in him often, so this isn’t about chasing shadows. Anything but, actually. His way above-average propensity to find fairways and greens in regulation is the starter combination for why we’re so hopeful. This week, his muscle off the tee adds fuel to the formula. He’s connected for two top 10s among five top 20s in 2024 and he’s 2-for-2 at TPC San Antonio with a T17 in his last appearance in 2021.

    Top 20

    Nate Lashley (+400) … There are more attractive considerations, who are a little shorter for this finish but the 41-year-old is in a groove with a T13 at THE PLAYERS Championship and a T21 at the Texas Children’s Houston Open in his last two outings. He cashed just once in his first seven starts of 2024, but that was a T3 at the Farmers Insurance Open, so his game has been sharp on three of the five toughest host courses of the season. That makes sense given, the fact, that he slots fifth on TOUR in hitting fairways. And while he’s just 1-for-4 at challenging TPC San Antonio, the cut made was a T18 with four red numbers two years ago. It was his third top 20 in four consecutive paydays at the time.

    Top 40

    Kevin Streelman (+225) … You’d win a bet at your favorite 19th hole if you knew that he’s the only multiple first-round leader of the season. Indeed, his only two cuts made in seven starts were set up by that position at the Puerto Rico Open (T32) and Valspar Championship (T26), both of which in his most recent three starts. Attach that factual quirk with the fact that he’s 8-for-8 at TPC San Antonio with five top 20s and a T37. And when you gaze at the kickback for this finish, this feels like a promotional play for a full unit.

    Odds were sourced at BetMGM.


    For resources to overcome a gambling problem, call or text 1-800-GAMBLER today.

    Rob Bolton is a Golfbet columnist for the PGA TOUR. The Chicagoland native has been playing fantasy golf since 1994, so he was just waiting for the Internet to catch up with him. Follow Rob Bolton on Twitter.

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