The Florida Swing rolls on as Bay Hill hosts the 2020 Arnold Palmer Invitational. With a strong 120-man field featuring several of the Official World Golf Ranking’s Top 20 players, it is set to be a prime event. Bay Hill plays as a Par 72 at 7454 yards long that played last year as the 9th most difficult on tour.
Bay Hill Course Fit
The course is the 12th longest on tour in par adjusted distance and features the 7th most narrow fairways on tour, putting a premium on overall driving distance and accuracy.
The chart below, courtesy of DataGolf aligns with this course description, showing the relative importance of Driving Distance, Driving Accuracy, Approach, Around the Green and Putting on performances at Bay Hill. Both driving distance and accuracy will be critical factors.
Cameron Champ, Rory McIlroy, Harris English, Bryson Dechambeau and Abraham Ancer are among the players who receive the largest boosts to their individual baselines due to strong course fit.
Arnold Palmer Invitational Betting Odds
The favorites in the betting markets this week include Rory McIlroy, Tommy Fleetwood, Bryson Dechambeau, Hideki Matsuyama, Xander Schauffele and Adam Scott at the top end of the field. As always, shopping around for the best lines is important to maximize your profit and there are some discrepancies across operators.
Bryson Dechambeau is best bet at DraftKings Sportsbook where he is available at 18-1, Hideki Matsuyama is best bet at Fanduel Sportsbook at 20-1 and Xander Schauffele is available at 25-1 on DraftKings Sportsbook.
Of these bets, we consider both Hideki Matsuyama and Xander Schauffele to be positive expected value wagers if bet at the recommended books, but negative expected value if bet at worse prices.
Here are our a few of our favorite PGA betting picks for the Arnold Palmer Invitational:
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Hideki Matsuyama (20-1 Outright, +230 T10):
While conquering tournament favorite Rory McIlroy will be no easy task, the value in betting Rory (who we like +600 or better) is no longer available. Instead, we’ll settle for a bigger price on the #3 ranked player in Strokes Gained T2G over the previous 50 rounds. Equally important, Hideki has been dialed in off of the tee, gaining 4 strokes on average over the previous three events. If the putter gets hot, he could contend outright and if not we still see a smidge of value betting him to Top 10.
Brian Harman (+650 to T20)
Harman offers the overall balance perfect for a Top 20 wager, including ranking 21st in the field in SG T2G and 35th in Strokes Gained Putting. This is as much a wager on price as anything, as Harman is only available at +400 at some other outlets. Harman has gained strokes T2G in 5 of his last 6 events and offers a nice value on Fanduel Sportsbook.
Abraham Ancer (70-1 Outright, +300 T20)
Ancer is one of the strongest bets that you will see in these markets. He is up to 29th in the official world golf rankings and has two top fives on the PGA Tour this season. Ancer ranks 19th on tour in strokes gained total and 35th on tour in strokes gained tee to green. He also has an average driving distance over 302 yards which has a huge impact on a golf course that is 7,400 yards long. If Ancer does win this event, or even comes close, 60/1 is probably the lowest number you will see on him in quite a while.
Carlos Ortiz (100-1 Outright, +350 T20)
Ortiz is one of the best values on the board this week at Bay Hill. He has three separate top-five finishes in the 2020 season on the PGA tour but has yet to win an event which is keeping his market price suppressed. He ranks 26th on tour in total strokes gained which is rather impressive for a player who has yet to earn a win on tour this season and he is 25th in strokes gained tee to green. This mostly shows us that his recent form has not been simply riding a hot putter. We love Ortiz as a bet this week.
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