Tides’ Takes – PGA Tournament Matchup Picks, Props & Outrights: 2023 Genesis Invitational

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ScoresAndOdds analyst Timothy Buell gives free expert advice and betting picks for every PGA event.  

For the purpose of this column, I will be focusing mostly on H2H matchups, outright tournament winners, and live bets! 

Make sure to use our tools at ScoresAndOdds to find the best lines at your favorite legal sportsbook.  

2023 Genesis Invitational: Information and Course Breakdown

Congratulations to Scottie Scheffler, who cruised to a victory and defended his title at the WM Phoenix Open.

He certainly deserved the $3.6 million dollar first-place prize and has now taken back the number-one spot in the OWGR. It certainly seems like there is a true big 3 in golf right now. Whether it be Scheffler, Jon Rahm, or Rory McIlroy it’s hard to say who’s playing the best golf. But having a three-way rivalry is good for the sport.

As far as our bets last week, Jordan Spieth was unable to get anything going over the weekend and ultimately finished sixth. He was a value at 40-1, while showing us that he will be contending throughout the season.  If he is that low again, I will be taking another shot on him regardless of the course or his current form. 

Now, the Tour heads to Riviera Country Club, in Pacific Palisades, California, for the final leg of the west-coast swing. This tournament has been held here since 1973 and is one of the more historical courses on Tour.

Much like last week, this will be a designated event, which means higher prize money, and thus a stronger-than-usual field. Oh yeah, and TIGER WOODS is back!

Riviera Country Club is a par 71 that plays 7,322 yards. The greens are your traditional west coast poa annual. Accuracy is at a premium, as the fairways are narrow and the course plays firm and fast. That doesn’t necessarily mean that accurate drivers of the ball have success, while it’s actually distance that matters the most here.

If everyone is playing out of the rough, the players that are closer to the hole will have a better chance to score. Many greens will be missed due to the speed, which means that strokes gained around the green are vital for success. It makes sense that Bubba Watson won three times here, as it takes long driving and creativity to win.  

The last five winners are Joaquin Niemann (-19), Max Homa (-12), Adam Scott (-11), J.B. Holmes (-14), Bubba Watson (-12).

Niemann has defected to LIV golf, so he won’t be able to defend his title. Scott and Homa are kind of outliers, since they are not very long hitters of the ball.  However, Scott has the creative ability to stay in any course. 

The key metrics I am looking for this week are driving distance, strokes gained around the green, and positive poa putting splits. The most important aspect of this course is a strong all-around game. This course has the ability to test all aspects of someone’s game and it should make for exciting golf. 

The three betting favorites are Rahm (8-1), McIlroy (10-1) and Scottie Scheffler (11-1).  Of course, if you are feeling really frisky, you can bet Tiger Woods at 150-1. Those are words I never thought I’d type.

Now, let’s get to the betting card.

Genesis Invitational Expert Betting Picks

Sam Burns To Win

We all know Burns is talented and we’ve seen him win against the best players in the world. With four wins across his first two seasons, Burns will be adding plenty of trophies to his resume. Keep in mind that when he was a rookie in 2021, he held the 36-hole lead here at Riviera.

Burns played very poorly on Saturday, which led to his demise, ultimately finishing in third place. We know that he is stout with the driver and has won enough on Tour, as his putter can get hot. I also like his recent form – coming off a sixth-place finish last week at the WM and an 11th at the Amex. 

Matthew Fitzpatrick To Win

Fitz told the media that he was dealing with a neck injury a couple of weeks ago at Pebble Beach. He seems to have fought off the injury, and personally, I don’t think he would risk further damage if it was significant.

Across the last two tournaments at Riviera, Fitz finished 30th and 5th.  He sneakily improved his driving distance, keep in mind he did win the U.S. Open, and it’s next to impossible to achieve that without being a strong driver of the ball.

The other thing that comes to mind when I watch Fitzpatrick is his creativity and ability to scramble. He is very much a European-style player, where it’s imperative to be solid around the green. I think he finishes strongly in this field, and if he’s in contention on Sunday, he has the ability to take home the title. 

Jordan Spieth To Win

Just like I promised in the intro, if they are going to hang a number like this on a player this good, I am going to jump on it.  There really wasn’t much recent form to speak of until last week, when he popped off for his 6th-place finish at the WM.

He hasn’t had a lot of strong success at Riviera with only two top-10 finishes in his ten career starts.  I was surprised when I saw that, you don’t need to be that accurate at this course and that is one of the weaknesses of his game.  His distance should make up for it and his around the green game is exceptional.  This course absolutely fits him, let’s see if he can finally find his footing here.

Rickie Fowler To Win

A couple of people that I follow in the betting industry were on Fowler last week at the WM around these same odds. I decided to hold off, because I didn’t think he was quite ready to make that leap.  I’m not sure if this will be the week, or not, but he is getting incredibly close to pulling a massive comeback and finding another career win.

Fowler hired a new coach and has a new caddie that he firmly believes he can win with, while inching closer and closer each week.  Fowler doesn’t have much in terms of positive results at Riviera, but I think the recent form is too strong to pass up.  

Official Betting Card