2019 Travelers Championship Matchup Bets: Grillo vs. Mickelson, Cantlay vs. Spieth, More

2019 Travelers Championship Matchup Bets: Grillo vs. Mickelson, Cantlay vs. Spieth, More article feature image
  • The 2019 Travelers Championship takes place on Thursday, June 20 at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Connecticut.
  • Justin Bailey used metrics from FantasyLabs to break down a few matchup bets at River Highlands.

In this piece, I’ll be using the golf metrics in the FantasyLabs PGA Models as well as other golf metrics in search of potentially exploitable individual betting matchups for the 2019 Travelers Championship.

Let’s dive into this week’s action.

All odds as of Tuesday morning.

Emiliano Grillo (-120) over Phil Mickelson

After backtesting all the metrics we have with the FantasyLabs Trends tool, all three of FantasyLabs’ catch-all metrics backtested favorably at TPC River Highlands, and Grillo has the edge in all of them over Mickelson (Grillo listed first):

  • Long-Term Adjusted Round Score: 68.9 vs. 69.1
  • Recent Adjusted Round Score: 68.2 vs. 70.3
  • Course Adjusted Round Score: 68.7 vs. N/A

Grillo has been the superior golfer to Phil in every facet in both the long and short term, and he’s a much better fit overall.

This week, I’ll also be weighing Strokes Gained: Ball Striking, Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee, along with par-4 efficiency from 400-450 yards since there are eight par 4s from such yardages this week.

Here’s how each golfer has faired over their past 50 rounds:

  • Strokes Gained: Ball Striking: 7th vs. 90th
  • Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee: 26th vs. 106th
  • Strokes Gained: Par 4s (400-450 yards): 8th vs. 70th

Despite his 58th-place finish at the U.S. Open, Grillo was excellent, gaining 6.2 strokes tee-to-green and 8.4 strokes on approach. His main issue was putting, as he lost 6.3 strokes putting. Still, I’ll side with the guy who has been striking the ball much better in both the long and short term.

I’d bet Grillo down to -135.


Patrick Cantlay (-140) over Jordan Spieth

When lines first came out, I thought -140 seemed way too favorable for Cantlay in this spot. That appeared to be true as Cantlay has since moved to -175, depending on your book. However, I’d still back Cantlay at that price given Cantlay dominates Spieth in most metrics I am looking at (Cantlay listed first):

  • Long-Term Adjusted Round Score: 68.2 vs. 68.9
  • Recent Adjusted Round Score: 66.2 vs. 67.9
  • Course Adjusted Round Score: 69.7 vs. 68.2
  • Adjusted Strokes on par 4s: -1.3 vs. -0.1
  • Strokes Gained: Par 4s (400-450 yards): 9th vs. 20th
  • Strokes Gained: Ball Striking: 1st vs. 118th
  • Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee: 5th vs. 135th

The difference between their Strokes Gained: Ball Striking and Off-the-Tee is the biggest disparity between the two.

Cantlay is striking better than everyone in the field over his past 50 rounds, while Spieth has mostly relied on his putter this year and ranks near the bottom of the field in both of those metrics.

Other Travelers Notes:

I also bet Kevin Streelman (+110) over Chez Reavie. Both golfers have comparable LT Adj Rd Scores and the same T10 Odds in the FantasyLabs Player Models. Furthermore, Streelman rates slightly ahead of Reavie in my personal model.

Streelman has been running red-hot with three top-six finishes over his past five starts, and he hasn’t missed a cut over that time frame.

Reavie and Streelman have both been striking the ball well this season, but Streelman has been slightly better off the tee, ranking 16th in Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee over his past 50 rounds, compared to 58th for Reavie.

And per Data Golf’s historical event data, Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee has been slightly more important at TPC River Highlands than your average tour event. I’d only bet this down to +105, however.

Note: Strokes Gained data via Fantasy National

How would you rate this article?