Bailey’s 2019 U.S. Open Matchup Bets: Can Webb Simpson Stay Hot?
Jun 8, 2019; Hamilton, Ontario, CAN; Webb Simpson chips on the green of the sixteenth hole during the third round of the 2019 RBC Canadian Open golf tournament at Hamilton Golf & Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
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 U.S. Open.
Let’s dive into this week’s action.
All odds as of Tuesday morning.
Webb Simpson (-145) over Phil Mickelson
Simpson is one of the golfers I am highest on this week since his game sets up perfectly for a short track like Pebble Beach where short game and accuracy will matter.
He also dominates Mickelson in every metric I’m weighing in the FantasyLabs Player Models (Simpson listed first):
- Long-Term Adjusted Round Score: 68.3 vs. 69.1
- Recent Adjusted Round Score: 67.6 vs. 71.0
- Greens in regulation: 66.6% vs. 64.8%
- Scrambling Rate: 64.3% vs. 57.9%
- Driving Accuracy: 63.6% vs. 52.5%
- Adjusted strokes on par 4s: -1.6 vs. +0.1
Simpson should be the perfect fit for a Pebble Beach course with narrow fairways and small greens since he’s hit 63.6% of fairways over the past 75 weeks and ranks 15th in Strokes Gained: Approach over his past 50 rounds.
With the small greens, they’ll be even harder to hit, so scrambling will be important this week and Simpson’s 64.3% scrambling rate is the third-best mark in the field.
Meanwhile, Phil ranks 85th in Strokes Gained: Approach over his past 50 rounds and has really struggled of late, missing the cut in two of his last three events, along with a 71st-place finish at the PGA Championship.
And not only does Simpson dominate Mickelson in par-4 scoring, but he also crushes him in the key par-4 yardages this week. There are eight par 4s between 400-450 yards and Webb ranks first in par-4 efficiency from such yardages, while Phil ranks 84th, respectively.
I’d bet this down to -175.
Lucas Glover (-135) over Kevin Kisner
Glover and Kisner have both had successful 2019 seasons thus far, but Glover has a slight edge in the metrics I am weighing this week (Glover listed first):
- Long-Term Adjusted Round Score: 69.3 vs. 69.6
- Recent Adjusted Round Score: 68.6 vs. 71.2
- Greens in regulation: 67% vs. 63.5%
- Driving accuracy: 64.1% vs. 65.7%
- Scrambling rate: 63.1% vs. 59.2%
- Adjusted strokes on par 4s: +0.1 vs. +1.2
Also, recent form was one of the more important metrics that popped up when I was looking at the backtesting, and Kisner’s form has fallen off of late.
Over his last four tournaments, he’s finished 41st, MC, MC and 41st. Kisner has also lost more than 2.7 strokes on approach in three of those four tournaments.
Given Kisner’s struggles, it’s not surprising that Glover has the superior Strokes Gained data in the metrics I’m looking at:
- Strokes Gained: Approach: 13th vs. 89th
- Strokes Gained: Ball Striking: 29th vs. 69th
- Strokes Gained: Around-the-Green: 13th vs. 123rd
I’d bet this down to -145.
Good luck this week!
Note: Strokes Gained data via Fantasy National