Tides’ Takes – PGA Tournament Matchup Picks, Props & Outrights: 2023 Famers Insurance Open

AT&T Byron Nelson picks
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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 matchup, 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 Farmers Insurance Open

Congratulations to Jon Rahm, who collected his second win in two weeks. He is absolutely cruising right now and could very well be on his way to an absolutely dominant season. I was once again let down by Taylor Montgomery, who finished in fifth place, three shots back of Rahm.  It’s not a matter of if Montgomery breaks through with a win, it just a matter of when it happens.  

The Tour now heads to historic Torrey Pines, located in La Jolla, California. The event will be played at two different courses – Torrey Pines South and North.

The U.S. Open is played at the south course, which is where we pull data from when evaluating stats for this tournament. Each golfer will play one round at each course, while the final two rounds will be played at the south course.

For those of you that like to wager on first-round leaders, I would highly recommend taking someone that is playing on the North course, which is 500 yards shorter and a significantly easier scoring setup.

Another little wrinkle that is worth noting: this tournament will begin on Wednesday and end Saturday.  The PGA Tour has decided (correctly) that they don’t want to compete with the NFL playoffs. Make sure to get your bets in by Tuesday night (or first thing Wednesday morning at the latest).  

Torrey Pines South is traditionally considered one of the more difficult courses on Tour. The par 3’s play at an average of over par. The greens are also smaller than Tour average. The Par 5’s are absolutely where you need to make your birdies, as they are the easiest holes on the course.

This will not be like the events we’ve seen the last few weeks, where it really just came down to being the hottest putter.  Players will miss greens and need to have a solid around-the-green game to contend. 

For example, Luke List is the defending champion of this event.  He is far and away one of the worst putters on Tour. That being said, he is one of the best iron players. Due to the small and difficult-to-hit greens, we need very strong iron players. And because of the very difficult par-3’s, and the overall length of the South course, we will need players who excel from 200 yards and above. Long irons, driving distance, and around-the-green game are paramount for success this week.    

Free PGA Betting Picks: 2023 Farmers Insurance Open 

If you’ve read any of my previous articles, you know that I don’t usually like to bet outrights at short odds. Outright winners are very hard to hit, so if I do hit one, I want it to be worth it. That being said, Willy Z is my favorite golfer this week – whether you want to bet him in head-to-head matchups or at 16-1 as an outright is entirely up to you.

My money is on him as an outright winner. Zalatoris finished second last year in this event, losing in a playoff to Luke List. This is going to be a very difficult course, (at least for the three rounds at the South course) and that is where Zalatoris excels. He was a top-5 machine at the major championship and was just a couple of shots shy of winning multiple majors.

In the past 36 rounds, he ranks first in proximity from 200 yards. The one key statistic that I love most about him is that he is second in bogey avoidance. Staying away from that big number will be key to success this week.  

I am going to keep firing on Cameron Davis this season, especially if the books are going to be hanging odds this good. He is too talented of a player to be this much of a long shot. Davis hasn’t had the best finishes at this event, but he has never missed a cut in five career appearances.

Davis has also gained on approach in four of those five starts. His distance off the tee is going to give him a huge advantage and his ability to score on the par-5’s will give him a leg up. Accuracy is his weak spot in his game, but distance outweighs accuracy on the South course, so I am willing to give him a pass. We won’t see him at these odds at many tournaments this season and I think this is a good course for him. 

I was pleasantly surprised to see his number so high. I thought he’d be more in the 70-80 to 1 range. Burmester might not be a household name, but he does rank 58th in the OWGR due mostly to his success on the DP World Tour. His best finish on the PGA Tour is a fourth-place finish at the Sanderson Farms Championship and an 11th-place finish at The Open Championship.

While the results are lacking, the skill set for this course is exactly what I’m looking for. In his last 100 rounds, he ranks first in driving distance, 20th in 200-plus yards proximity, and 21st in around-the-green game. For someone with these metrics, those are some outstanding odds and we know that he can play difficult courses well.

Official Betting Card