John Rahm was finally able to close the door and win his first major championship last week at a place he loves. He made some unbelievable putts to win on 17 and 18. Brooks pulled through with a top 10 for us and also beat Bryson in his matchup.
2021 Travelers Championship betting fever is reaching the boiling point, so let’s get down and dirty!
This week the tour heads to Connecticut for the Travelers Championship hosted by TPC River Highlands. TPC RIver Highlands is a par 70 playing around 6,840 yards. It is one of the shortest courses the players will see all season.
River Highlands is a classic style course with tight, tree-lined fairways with small greens. Getting the ball in the fairway is a must to be able to hit the greens. The scores are typically pretty low and require a bunch of birdie making.
Hitting the greens is key to making birdies and players will have to be making a bunch to stay close this week. While the shorter length of RIver Highlands lets the shorter hitters have a better chance, we have seen some longer hitters have success here.
Dustin Johnson is the defending champ and Bubba Watson has won this event three times. However, guys like Chez Reavie and other shorter hitters have shown success as well. A hot putter can give anyone a chance at this event.
Approach play will be important as always but particularly guys who are really giving themselves the best looks for birdies are likely to make enough this week. Opportunities Gained is a great stat from fantasynational.com to look at those players hitting the closest as well as proximity stats.
Predicting who will ride a hot putter is always a crapshoot but I would lean towards some players who have putted well recently or guys who are generally good putters. It’s a streaky part of the game that can change round to round though.
This course gives pretty much all types of golfers the chance to succeed meaning it is a bit more wide open. It also gives bettors more options in the market because length isn’t a prerequisite for success here. There is more value on the board this week than some others.
Lastly, some previous course success is helpful as it can be a bit tricky and players who have played well at TPC River Highlands seem to do so repeatedly. Guys like Paul Casey, Brian Harman and Bubba. However, their prices are reflective of their course history.
2021 Travelers Championship Betting Outrights
Like I mentioned, pretty much all styles of players are in play this week as the longer hitters will be able to club down off the tee and get in the fairway and the shorter hitters will be able to take advantage of their accuracy. 2021 Travelers Championship betting outrights will be rather tricky to nail down.
The field is pretty strong this week, especially the week after a major on the opposite side of the country. A few of the top-tier players are here that aren’t normally so it will be interesting to see how that affects this leaderboard. I would expect to see some of their names up top on Sunday.
Scottie Scheffler +2200 (DraftKings)
Scheffler fits the DJ and Bubba mold of the longer hitters who can get really hot and make birdies. I love his birdie-making potential here and his recent form is off the charts with three top 10’s in his last four starts.
Scheffler has been firing on all cylinders with his game and his style should fit TPC River Highlands. He can make birdies in bunches and you have to do that to contend at this tournament.
He has also been putting really well, gaining at least three strokes putting in three of his last four starts. He also ranks top in SG: Approach and Off the Tee as well as third in Birdies or Better Gained over the last 36 rounds.
Scheffler has come so close to winning his first event and is on the cusp of that. I like his fit here and he is beyond due to get that elusive win.
Charley Hoffman +4000
Before a couple of lackluster starts the last two weeks, Hoffman was playing the best golf of his career. He had five straight top 20’s leading up to the last couple of weeks and really he played okay besides one area of his game each week.
Hoffman has been awesome with his irons this season and he ranks first in the field in SG: Approach over the last 36 rounds and 1st in Opportunities Gained and 2nd in Birdies or Better Gained.
Those stats are exactly what he will have to do this week to compete. He fits the mold of someone who should succeed here and he has shown the ability to win. Plus, Hoffman has four top 15’s at this event in his career.
Longshots I like: Sam Burns +7000 & Aaron Wise +8000
Brian Harman +200
Harman is a horse for the course it seems this week and he is priced like it. I don’t love his outright number at all given his win equity but you cannot discount his history at this event. He has three top 10’s in his last six tries at this tournament.
Harman is a perfect fit with his short accurate approach to golf and his stellar putting. He is also playing pretty well recently with six top 20’s in his last seven starts. That is some really spectacular golf coming into a tournament where he’s had success.
Harman does everything you need to do at TPC River Highlands. He gets the ball in the fairway (11th in Fairways Gained), he chips and putts really well (top 12 in both SG: Putting and Around the Green) and he makes birdies (18th in Birdies or Better Gained).
Longshot top 10: Doc Redman +600
Russell Henley +200
Henley came back to life last week at the U.S. Open with a top 15 finish and flashing that awesome approach game he has. He went on a bit of a cold streak recently but was one of the most consistent players last season and seems to be back in some form.
Despite his poor form recently, Henley still ranks 7th in SG: Approach over the last 36 rounds and his proximity numbers in the 125-150 range are elite. There will be lots of wedges and short irons this week which are his bread and butter.
Henley had an awesome run last year that started about this time and he piled up 9 top 20’s since this time last year and this course fits him well.
Emiliano Grillo +250
Grillo has consistently been one of the best ball strikers on tour over the last year or so but his putting has been tough to watch some weeks. However, Grillo is showing signs of life with his putter and whenever he putts well, he contends.
Grillo has gained strokes putting in three of his last four starts and is actually in the top 60 in the field in SG: Putting which is a big improvement for him over last year. His irons are where he makes his money though.
Grillo ranks top five in SG: Approach, Opportunities Gained, Birdies or Better Gained and proximity from 150 to 175 yards. All of those are absolutely essential this week and he is positioned to make some noise.
Longshot top 20: Patton Kizzire +400 & Sebastian Munoz +550
Rickie Fowler -114 over Adam Scott
Fowler has largely been irrelevant over the last year but his game is coming around and most importantly his putter has shown itself again. Fowler was always a great putter when he was competing for wins and it had gone away from him for a while.
Fowler has a top 15 in his only start in this event and he comes in rested and motivated after missing out on the U.S. Open. He is coming off of back-to-back top 11 finishes and should be all in for a win to regain his stature on tour.
Scott hasn’t shown a lot recently and is a first-timer at this tournament. Other than the Honda Classic, Scott hasn’t gained more than 1.6 strokes on approach since January. His form is all over the place and he is on a short week coming from California.
Fowler also announced this week that he is going to be a dad so maybe that good karma and vibes will rub off on him.
I prefer to play Kizzire in the south on Bermuda, as he tends to play well there but his statistics recently, profile exactly like what I am looking for this week. He is a really good iron player and has been one of the best putters on tour this year.
Kizzire can make birdies with the best of them, ranking top 10 in Birdies or Better Gained and top 20 in Opportunities Gained. He also ranks inside the top 20 in SG: Approach and Putting.
His driver can hold him back some but he should be able to back off and just get the ball in the fairways with driving irons or 3-wood this week. I like him more on these shorter, accuracy-style courses for sure.
Kizzire has two top-fives in his last four starts and is +250 to finish in the top 30 and +400 for a top 20 finish this week. He also finished 6th at this event last year… and that’s what we’ll be wrapping up our 2021 Travelers Championship betting preview with!