Gimme The Loot: Revved Up For A Return To Riv

We are back in Cali and this time we’re in the Big Cat’s house for the Genesis Invitational at The Riviera Country Club. And with a return to Cali, we get a return of Tiger Woods, who is back in a PGA Tour event for the first time since 2020. I am legally required to make a section about Tiger so I will get back to him but let’s look at the rest of the field and course first. We are in our second consecutive “elevated event” so the tournament field is stacked with storylines and gambling value up and down the board. We once again see Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy, and last weeks winner Scottie Scheffler leading the odds board, but so many stars are lurking further down the board. Riviera is one of the Tour’s favorite places to play despite being known as a challenging course. Tiny greens (idk about tiny personally, I think they’re adequate size. Some would say too big) and long fairways leads to more emphasis on a solid short game relative to recent tournaments and courses. Long fairways also require distance with the driver so if you can find a guy with both the driver and wedges works, you can find some value. In honor of Tiger, this is a column about comebacks and returns. So lets look at four guys in the middle of, or in desperate need of a comeback and see if we can get some good returns on our investments with these guys

Tiger Woods

Favorite Bet: Uhhhhhhhh… Nahhhhhhhhhhh

Lets dissect Tiger into three section; my personal feelings, what he is for the sport, and what to do with him on your betting card. Personally, I don’t love Tiger. I flat out did not like golf when Tiger was the best golfer in the world. As such, my excitement for him is the energy that picks surrounds his rare starts in tournaments. It has been fun to see the way the golf world reveres Tiger. It’s like what if Sandy Koufax popped up and started games for the Dodgers randomly throughout his life. Or what it would be like if Michael Jordan returned after he won six championships and played with some random team like the Wizards. I am excited to watch this happen and happy for the fans that love him but lets look at his gambling profile.

I don’t think there is any value to betting Tiger. He is 130-1 to win the tournament, would be 250-1 if his name was Davis Thompson. Mix in poor value with poor performance and it’s a cocktail I am not interested in drinking. Tiger has not gained strokes to the field since August 2020 at the PGA Championship and with his age and injuries he’s just not a competitive golfer at this time. Really the best bet on him is to miss the cut at -210 parlayed with someone like a Wyndham Clark to make the cut at right around even money but that’s not fun. In his recent press conference Tiger has repeatedly said that he wouldn’t play if he didn’t think he could win. Unfortunately, we know he can’t (prove me wrong Tiger, please).

Rickie Fowler

Favorite Bet to win his group of five +300

RRRRRRRRICK!!!!!!!! Rickie is back to playing competitive golf for the first time since late 2019-early 2020 and it is fun to see. He sank the only hole in one last week (-155 wooo) en route to a t10. His 4th top 11 finish in the 2022 wrap around season. Not only that, but he’s been gaining strokes to field in the weeks he’s not been as succesful, something you couldn’t say about him in years prior. His putter has been hot of late and his short game was excellent last week and he should be able to keep it going. I don’t think Rickie will win it this week, but the return to winners circle is right around the corner and that’ll be a good day for golf.

Jason Day

Favorite Bet Top Aussie +165/Top 20 +175

I like a good nationality prop because if things go right, it can be Friday on Friday when the cut comes, but if you bet someone like Adam Hadwin to be top Canadian last week, you wouldn’t cashed a t10 thanks to Nick Taylor. Likewise, one bad hole can take you from a top 10 finish to a no a winner faster than you can question Pete Dye for putting a bunker in middle of a fairway. So 6 to a half dozen on my J-Day bet. Day has been better than Rickie since he got healthy with 7 top 21 finishes in his last 8 starts including 3 top tens. But while Rickie has struggled in various strokes gained categories, J-day has been gaining strokes across all facets of his game. With the exception of his missed cut at the RSM, Jason has gained at least 5 strokes to the field in every tournament this year and his course history at Riv is about as good as it gets. There are only so many guys I can predict future wins for, but I going to do it again. JASON DAY 2022 WINNER. BOOK IT.

The Jesster’s laughably good pick of the week

Justin Thomas +1400 to win

Normally this pick is just a vibe with no data backing it, but I couldn’t find the comeback angle for JT he’s in this one. I think could make a comeback argument but the comeback would be from him playing shitty golf (relative to his usual) and that seems mean. JT’s around the green game has been is always excellent and his approach play finally hit positive at the Farmers where he’s gained a stroke per round in approach since. I think Scottie Scheffler is still the ultimate “if this is working he’s winning guy” when talking about his putter, but JT and his approach play has a lot of similarities. If JT can keep up the approach play success and maybe gain a stroke putting (hasn’t done that since last June) his driver and around the green is good enough to carry him to a victory this week.

About the Author

No one reads this. But if you do thank you. I enjoy golf and writing about it so I appreciate you taking an interest. Sungjae Im top 20 +125 top 5 at +600 if ya nasty

Cody “the Jesster” Jess

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