PGA TOUR Zurich Classic Betting Guide
Tournament and Course Overview
It is a team event this week at the Zurich Classic from TPC Louisiana in Avondale as 80 pairs of pros will tee it up on this 7,425 yard, par-72, Pete Dye layout. Over 100 bunkers line this wetland course, but it should still yield some low scores when looking at past results. The format will be a two-man best ball on Thursday and Saturday with alternate-shot on Friday and Sunday.
Team events always show a more jovial side of these pros, but there are still coveted FedEx Cup points and TOUR exemptions out there for the winning team. It was only three years ago where Cameron Smith was a part of the winning squad for his first PGA TOUR victory, propelling him to full-time status and setting in motion the success he has on tour since.
There are quite a bit of fun teams in the field as many countrymen team up to prep themselves for Ryder Cup and President Cup matches alike (Smith and Marc Leishman, Tyrell Hatton and Danny Willett, and Viktor Hovland and Kris Ventura, to name a few), as well as the young gun team of Collin Morikawa and Matthew Wolff. They will all be aiming to take down the defending champions, Jon Rahm and Ryan Palmer, who won this event by three strokes in 2019.
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These team events can be quite difficult to pick when trying to use a statistical model, but taking a week off is never fun, so let’s throw a few long-shot outright plays together and hope to get a weekend sweat in at a cheap price.
I will start the card this week with an astronomical outright price of +21000, the team of Peter Malnati and Chris Baker. Both have shown they can get hot and make birdies with the best of them, with Malnati offering up the fourth-best Birdie-or-Better rate in the entire field. This event has yielded some “no-name” winners in the past, so I would not be shocked to see these guys in the thick of things over the weekend.
Another duo that can light up the scorecard with birdies is Matthew NeSmith and Chase Seiffert (+10000). NeSmith ranks inside the top 25 at the same Birdie-or-Better rate, and both he and Seiffert have been making more cuts of late than at any point in their careers. Neither have won on TOUR before, so the bonus of the TOUR exemption with a win should only fuel their fire this week.
A fun team to root for will be the Norwegian squad of Viktor Hovland and Kristoffer Ventura (+3400). Hovland’s elite game need not be explained here, and I think the price is a little higher than it should be for someone who can carry this team, if need be, in the best ball format. He ranks inside the top 10 in every major statistical category other than putting in this field, and if he gets going early it should make things easier on Ventura who has been playing some poor golf of late after showing some juice in the 2019-2020 season.
My favorite pick at the top of the board for this event is the team of Billy Horschel and Sam Burns (+2000). Horschel is of course coming in off a recent win in a non-stroke-play event (WGC Match Play), and his experience should assist the younger Burns who has come remarkably close to his first PGA TOUR win on more than one occasion in the past year. Both players’ stats pop quite nicely when filtered to Pete Dye courses, with Horschel being fourth in the field in putting. Look for these guys to have a say in things come Sunday afternoon.
Peter Malnati / Chris Baker Outright (+21000)
Matthew NeSmith / Chase Seiffert Outright (+10000)
Viktor Hovland / Kris Ventura Outright (+3400)
Billy Horschel / Sam Burns Outright (+2000)