For those who missed it, please check out the 2019 Mayakoba Golf Classic Preview and Betting Strategies column for information about what types of golfers to target this week for your props, futures bets and DFS Lineups.
With that in mind, here’s who I like this week at the El Camaleon Golf Club (with odds courtesy of mybookie.ag):
Viktor Hovland – 18/1: If accuracy and pin point precision is the name of the game this week, look no further than Hovland. There’s no other player in the field that can combine accuracy and length off the tee as good as him, and since turning pro he has fantastic ball striking statistics with his approach shots. Where he has struggled is with his scrambling, but the areas around the green at El Camaleon aren’t all that difficult because, like most resort courses, they’re meant to be playable for guests. Without a whole lot of worthy contenders in the relatively weak field, this could be the place for Hovland’s first win on the PGA Tour.
Russell Knox – 30/1: Russell Knox is a player this week that pops in most course fit models. Throughout his career, Knox has shown well on short, less than driver golf courses featuring slow greens and weak fields. That makes sense given the bread and butter with his game is accuracy off the tee, a high rate of greens in regulation hit and solid putting. While his recent results have been just OK, signs are pointing to good performance for Knox and his price at 30/1 makes it worthwhile to back.
Kevin Kisner – 35/1: Kisner was featured in this week’s DFS Column, so I won’t rehash why this is a gut call that he has a very strong performance. My only other qualifiers here is that he’s underpriced at 35/1 given the ceilings of some of the other players around him, and that he played a lot better than the final results showed at the WGC-HSBC Champions. Kisner was solidly in the Top 10 most of the tournament before a final round 77 punted him down to a T28 finish. A week off to shake off the bad vibes from the final round should help, and at a golf course that theoretically matches his strengths he’s in line to grab the win.
Brian Harman – 60/1: Harman was also featured in the DFS Column this week, and while a missed cut at the Houston Open is discouraging I’m willing to let that slide given his overall form the last few months. After a horrible start to 2019, Harman has found good form with four Top 10’s over his last 11 starts that includes much improved ball striking, particularly with his accuracy, and solid putting. He’s knocking on the door to break through for a victory, and if the poor ball striking he showed in Houston was just a blip on the radar he could do just that at Mayakoba.
Carlos Ortiz -140 over Beau Hossler: While Hossler has been better of late, I just don’t trust him given how erratic and poor his ball striking is. Hossler is an inaccurate player who has trouble hitting consistent iron shots and skates by far too often with his putting. Meanwhile, Ortiz enters this tournament in great form, ranking 20th in Strokes Gained – Tee-to-Green has a pair of Top 10’s in his last four starts. While El Camaleon is a relatively easy resort course for the professionals, bad ball striking will be exposed there. Back the better ball striker here.
Brice Garnett -110 over Kevin Streelman: This is more of an indictment of Kevin Streelman than an endorsement of Brice Garnett. Mixed into a T4 finish at the Sanderson Farms Championship for Streelman is five missed cuts over his last eight tournaments that features very erratic ball striking. While I don’t love having to back a middling player like Garnett in this matchup, he at least has a good track record at golf courses similar to what El Camaleon will throw at him this week. I don’t have high hopes for either, but I like Garnett to beat Streelman head to head.
Viktor Hovland -125 over Jason Day: My love for Hovland this week is above. As for Jason Day, his play over the last year could not be any more uninspiring. Mayakoba isn’t a great fit for Day, who excels more often on driver heavy courses than ones where he needs to throttle back off the tee and requires precision with the irons. Day as struggled for the last few years with his approach shots, and there’s no indication that it’s magically going to turn around this weekend. I expect Hovland to dust him one on one.