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2020 RSM Classic Betting Preview: Which Stats Matter at Sea Island Golf Club?

2020 RSM Classic Betting Preview: Which Stats Matter at Sea Island Golf Club? article feature image

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images. Pictured: Webb Simpson

After an exciting week at The Masters, the TOUR heads just south of Augusta for the RSM Classic at Sea Island Resort (Seaside) and Sea Island Resort (Plantation).

Each golfer will play three rounds on the Seaside course and one round on the Plantation course.

The tournament will have a stronger than usual field, benefiting from the schedule change. With so many golfers already in Georgia, some are sticking around for another week and the chance to pile up some FedEx Cup points.

Sea Island Resort (Seaside) is a par 70 layout, measuring 7,005 yards and the Plantation course is a Par 72 measuring 7,062 yards. The Seaside course plays more like a coastal links course, while the Plantation Course is similar to a tree-lined parkland course. Both courses feature bermudagrass greens and both will be very score-able.

Some notable players in this year’s stronger-than-usual field include: Jason Day, Webb Simpson, Danny Willett, Zach Johnson, Shane Lowry, Kevin Kisner, Tyrrell Hatton, Justin Rose, Joaquin Niemann, and Matthew Fitzpatrick.

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Past Winners at The RSM Classic

  • 2019: Tyler Duncan (-19)
  • 2018: Charles Howell III (-19)
  • 2017: Austin Cook (-21)
  • 2016: Mackenzie Hughes (-17)
  • 2015: Kevin Kisner (-22)

Let’s take a look at several metrics for Sea Island Resort to determine which golfers boast top marks in each category over their last 24 rounds:

Strokes Gained: Approach

The greens at Seaside are big, so it will be important to stick approach shots close this week to avoid having to make difficult two-putt par saves. In what should be a birdie-fest, golfers will need to stick their approach shots to contend.

Total Strokes Gained: Approach in past 24 rounds:

  1. Russell Henley (+26.6) (+3000)
  2. Emiliano Grillo (+18.3) (+10000)
  3. Chez Reavie (+17.1) (+7500)
  4. Zach Johnson (+17.1) (+5000)
  5. Scott Stallings (+16.3) (+15000)

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Fairways Gained

Length really isn’t a factor at either course this week. Looking at the past winners at Sea Island, they are all accurate golfers off of the tee who know how to find the fairway.

Total Fairways Gained in past 24 rounds:

  1. Chez Reavie (+40.7) (+7500)
  2. Chris Baker (+40.4) (+75000) 
  3. Ryan Armour (+38.3) (+25000)
  4. James Hahn (+37.0) (+15000)
  5. Brendon Todd (+36.9) (+9000)

Strokes Gained Putting: Bermudagrass

This tournament could become a putting contest if the winds aren’t strong this week. Historically, the winners of the RSM Classic are great bermudagrass putters (Simpson, Kisner, Hughes).

Total Strokes Gained: Putting on Bermuda in past 24 rounds:

  1. Patton Kizzire (+29.6) (+15000)
  2. Denny McCarthy (+23.8) (+8500)
  3. JT Poston (+23.5) (+10000)
  4. Matthew Fitzpatrick (+22.1) (+2800)
  5. Webb Simpson (+18.0) (+850)

Birdie or Better Gained

With birdies (and potentially some eagles) likely to come in abundance this week, pars aren’t going to cut it at Sea Island. I anticipate the winning score to be close to -20, so targeting golfers who go low is the right strategy here.

Total strokes gained in category in past 24 rounds

  1. Jason Kokrak (+21.0) (+3500)
  2. Cameron Davis (+20.0) (+12500)
  3. Tyrrell Hatton (+19.6) (+1200)
  4. Kristoffer Ventura (+18.4) (+15000)
  5. Peter Malnati (+18.2) (+15000)

Strokes Gained: Par 4 (400-450)

With eight of the par 4’s on the Seaside course measuring 400-450 yards, I am looking to target golfers who excel on Par 4’s of this length.

Total strokes gained in category in past 24 rounds:

  1. Doc Redman (+20.9) (+7000)
  2. Russell Henley (+17.9) (+3000)
  3. Harold Varner III (+12.0) (+7000)
  4. Kevin Streelman (+11.7) (+9000)
  5. Maverick McNealy (+11.5) (+10000)

Statistical Model

Below, I’ve reported overall model rankings using a combination of the five key statistical categories previously discussed.

These rankings are comprised of SG: App (25%) Fairways Gained (21); SG: Putting bermudagrass (21%); B.O.B (21%); and, SG: Par 4 400-450 (12%)

  1. Doc Redman (+7000)
  2. Kevin Kisner (+4500)
  3. Webb Simpson (+850)
  4. Matthew Fitzpatrick (+2800)
  5. Zach Johnson (+5000)
  6. Denny McCarthy (+8500)
  7. Russell Henley (+3000)
  8. Sungjae Im (+2200)
  9. Sam Burns (+6000)
  10. Peter Malnati (+15000)

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