Sleeper Picks: Travelers Championship
June 21, 2022
By Rob Bolton , GolfBet for PGATOUR.COM
- Brendan Steele has an impressive record at TPC River Highlands. (Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Brendan Steele (+175 for a Top 20) … It probably was unfair to omit him from the Power Rankings because he’s not only surging into town, but he’s also the owner of one of the more impressive records at TPC River Highlands sans a victory. Since Bay Hill in early March, he’s cashed in seven consecutive starts, four of which for a top 15. And since his rookie season of 2011, the now-39-year-old hasn’t missed an edition of the Travelers Championship where all eight of his paydays are top 25s.
Lucas Glover (+500 for a Top 20) … Beginning with the four-time PGA TOUR winner and covering the Sleepers that follow, lower your expectations to a top 30 or top 40 where you can find it. Since prevailing almost 12 months ago at the John Deere Classic, which he will defend next week, the 42-year-old has risen for only two top 20s, but he’s missed just four cuts in 2022, so he continues to put himself into position to strike on weekends. Still among the most proficient tee to green, he delivered T20 in his last trip to TPC River Highlands in 2020.
Andrew Putnam (+550 for a Top 20) … The 33-year-old is piled among the guys who lay dormant for long stretches before reconnecting with the kind of form that got them to this level of professional golf in the first place. If a T15 at Colonial and a T31 at The Country Club are hints, then the momentum should extend to TPC River Highlands. He’s 2-for-2 in the tournament with a T13 last year and when he was mired in one of his slumps.
Matthew NeSmith (+400 for a Top 20) … En route to a T3 at Copperhead three months ago, he made it clear with his words and his execution that he’s not the same player that he was a year ago. While his Official World Golf Ranking basically is the same (currently 154th), he’s improved about 125 spots since the Valspar Championship, so it’s not about the static value, it’s about its direction. That career-best performance ignited an 8-for-9 stretch that’s been end-loaded with cuts made in his last seven starts. Currently 29th on TOUR in greens hit and a force overall from tee to green, he’s poised to cash for the first time in three tries at TPC River Highlands.
Alex Smalley (+400 for a Top 20) … He’s lurking just outside the noisemakers among the rookies, but with a pair of top 10s among six top 25s and positioned 69th in the FedExCup, he already can chalk up his season heretofore as successful. What’s more, he’s maximizing on the opportunities as he absorbs the pitfalls on his learning curve. To wit, despite failing to cash in six of his last 10 starts, he recorded a top 30 in the other four. That’s your target in his debut at TPC River Highlands. He’s inside the top 50 on TOUR in total driving, Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee, greens in regulation, proximity to the hole and par-4 scoring.
Odds were sourced on Tuesday, June 21, 2022. For live odds, visit BetMGM.