2021 Palmetto Championship Betting Preview
Last week was a wild one with Jon Rahm being forced to withdraw after Saturdays’ round while holding a six-shot lead. He almost certainly would have won but unfortunately was unable to finish the tournament.
Patrick Cantlay went on to win in a playoff against Collin Morikawa on the first playoff hole. Both players found themselves in the lead after the Rahm withdrawal and neither played particularly well Sunday but they held on.
This week the tour heads to South Carolina for the first-ever Palmetto Championship at Congaree Golf Club. This event is replacing the RBC Canadian Open for this year because of issues with the border and Covid.
Congaree has never hosted a PGA Tour event and is a relatively unknown course to most people and players. It will be a guessing game to try and handicap this event with little known information about the course.
What we do know is that it is a par 71, playing around 7,655 yards. On paper, it looks super long but most people who have played there say it doesn’t play quite that long because of how firm it usually is.
I would expect super firm and fast fairways and greens that make keeping the ball where you land nearly impossible both off the tee and on approach. It will take some accurate iron play and quality short game to handle firm conditions.
There is no rough on the course and there is lots of sand, both beside the greens and off the fairways. Sand save and scrambling abilities will be tested without a doubt.
What makes it even harder to predict is the really poor field this week. Next week is the U.S. Open so many players are not here this week and many others were qualifying for the U.S. Open Monday and withdrew also.
Other than Dustin Johnson and Brooks, the field is pretty weak. Other than a few guys at the top, the dispersion of talent throughout the rest of the field is pretty slim and this event will be super tough to predict.
Ultimately, I will be looking at players who have shown some recent form and probably with a lean towards the longer hitters given the length of the course. Also, iron play will be key as always but with big runoffs around the greens and relatively low iron talent in the field, I would suspect the short game could play a big factor.
Additionally, players who have had success in the southeast and on bermuda make some sense as well. Tread carefully this week and don’t be afraid to go deep down the board as 100-1 guys really aren’t much worse than 40-1 this week.
Palmetto Championship – Outrights
I would say this week might be the ultimate dart throw if the winner doesn’t come from the first eight or so players. After the top few players, there are very few PGA Tour wins in this field and lots of question marks week to week.
I am going to grab a couple of shorter priced players and hope their clearly superior talent will be enough
Sungjae Im +2000 (Fanduel)
Sungjae seems to be priced differently everywhere so make sure to shop his number where you can. Sungjae has some actual win equity in this field and should be trying to get his game right for next week.
Im hasn’t been lighting it up but when he is on bermuda he is a different golfer. His one win came on bermuda and his best recent starts have as well.
Sungjae can really get hot with his irons and his short game is really good. He should have all the necessary games to succeed here. He isn’t the longest but as long as it firms up, he shouldn’t be affected too much there.
Sungjae has been inconsistent lately but he has shown an ability to win and win on bermudagrass. Looking for super great options in this field is really tough too so you can do worse than Sungjae at 20-1.
Lucas Glover +4500
This is probably a sucker bet but there are not many options so I’ll bite. Glover is an ambassador for Congaree and has more experience than most of this field. He should have a slight advantage there.
Besides the fact he should be conformable here, he is actually playing pretty decently of late. His off the tee numbers and around the greens stats are really nice ranking inside the top 15 in SG in both over the last 24 rounds.
Glover is typically a pretty good iron player and his most recent form suggests he is trending up there as well. I just like getting one of the more accomplished players in this field at a decent number on a course he should know more than others.
Glover also has two top 10’s in his last six starts.
Longshots I like: Luke List +7000 & JT Poston +8500
Matt Fitzpatrick +150
I’ll try to stick with as many of the top guys as I can this week given the talent discrepancies down the board. It may just be tough to tell where these guys’ minds are with the U.S. Open looming.
However, Fitzpatrick is still searching for his first win on tour and he should be gunning for it with the weak field this week. He is in okay long-term form with five top 10’s since the start of February and a couple other nice finishes.
Fitz just has way more ability than the majority of this field. He is a really good bermuda player and particularly bermuda putter. He is also somehow ranked 1st in SG: Off the Tee which is unusual for him.
He profiles nicely with success in the southeast and on bermuda still vying for his first win on tour.
Longshot top 10: Jhonattan Vegas +500
Garrick Higgo +188
Candidly, I know very little about Higgo other than he is a rising star on the European Tour. From what I have read, he is a really good young player who is in some really good recent form.
He has two wins in his last three starts and two other top 10’s in his last five. He is really on a nice run and is clearly talented. I like getting on him in a field like this where there might be a bit less pressure for him.
He just made the cut at the PGA which is another course with bermuda and he putted pretty well. Ultimately this is one of the few players coming in with really good form so I am riding that and the fact he has flashed some real win equity on the Euro Tour.
Doc Redman +250
This is a total upside play. Redman was a golf stat nerd darling last year with his ball striking, but he never seemed to fully put everything together for a super high finish.
This year he has been pretty awful with a bunch of missed cuts but he seems to have righted the ship a bit lately. He has three straight made cuts including a top 10. His irons have come back around as well gaining strokes on approach in all three events.
He has always shown flashes and is starting to again. He can really bomb it and maybe the wider fairways paired with his distance can curb some of his off the tee issues he’s been having.
Redman is also putting better than normal gaining strokes putting in three straight. He has the talent and he went to college at Clemson so maybe getting back in that part of the country will help too.
Longshot top 20: Chez Reavie +600 & John Pak +600
Palmetto Championship – Matchup
Keith Mitchell -112 over Kevin Kisner
This is a bit bold going against Kisner in the south on bermuda but I like it. Kisner has been downright awful for a while now and is not showing many signs of life.
Kisner ranks outside the top 100 in SG: Approach over the last 24 rounds and isn’t much better anywhere else but putting. He made his first cut in over a month last week and it was largely a fluke as he lost 6.4 strokes on approach.
Kisner is also a short hitter who has been known to struggle on the longer course and this certainly qualifies as long no matter how much roll out you get.
Mitchell is somewhat of a bermuda specialist. His one win was on bermuda and many of his best finishes are as well. Mitchell has made five of his last six cuts including three top 26 finishes.
Based on their recent form, this is a no brainer. Mitchell also hits it a mile and shouldn’t be too affected by the length of this course. Mitchell’s bermuda prowess and his good putting recently should also come in handy this week.
I watch and bet on golf every single week and the bottom half of this field may be the worst I have ever seen. There will be plenty of guys on the first couple of pages Sunday that are relatively unknown to most golf watchers.
I am going to ride with Whaley to be that guy. Whaley has made nine straight cuts with all but one finish inside the top 40. He doesn’t have a single top 10 however but he has established a bit of a floor.
Also, these other finishes are in much better fields as well. Whaley’s best-putting surface is by far bermuda and his better finishes have come on bermuda courses.
I’m not saying that Whaley is likely to win but his recent run of consistently good golf has me excited for a top 30 for 40 bet at +190 and +120 respectively.
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