2022 Butterfield Bermuda Championship: Expert Eyeing Seamus Power, Ben Griffin in Final Round
(Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) Pictured: Seamus Power.
With just one round left at the Butterfield Bermuda Championship, I will take my slight profit for the event and move on to next week's World Wide Technologies Championship at Mayakoba. That is probably different from the answer everyone wants to hear, but sometimes a wager not made is as good as anything you can do for the day when the statistical data is irrelevant for the week.
I do believe our head-to-head loss Saturday of Scott Brown over Fabian Gomez was structurally sound on the most basic level. Gomez finished the day in a share of 46th out of 67 golfers, but we got caught in the trap that I was worried about as the lack of statistical data caused issues throughout the board.
I know some of you out there were fortunate and had plays that ended up being winners against the Argentinian since all shops offer different matchups, but that is one of the reasons I try to pinpoint fade candidates over anything else since they can more easily be found when you look around.
Keep that in mind when you read my articles — the true play is the fade of the opponent. However, let's move on and quickly talk about the top of the board heading into Sunday.
If you aren't doing so already, you can find me on Twitter @TeeOffSports. There, I will provide my pre-tournament model, a powerful and interactive data spreadsheet that allows user inputs to create custom rankings for golf. That sheet is free and released every Monday, so be sure to check it out and construct your own numbers from my database of information.
(Editor's note: For those who might be unaware, the PGA Tour uses something called “Stat Tracker” to measure data. However, their system doesn't travel outside the country and the tournament is in Bermuda this week. So, we can see the tournament scores, but we can't, from a statistical perspective, see how someone is accomplishing their results.)
Final Round Leaderboard
I included the top 13 (including ties) for this list since we will likely see one of those options walk out of Bermuda with the title. Let's talk about a handful of options and figure out what we should expect on Sunday.
T1 – Seamus Power – Best Pre-Tournament Rank On My Model (1st)
While some in the industry were worried about Seamus Power's recent form with his irons heading into the tournament, my model's upside portion ignored the recency bias and placed him first when it came to projected win equity.
Nothing about this result should be considered a surprise. Power's chances to capture his second PGA Tour title will be there for the taking. The Irishman ranked number one for me at short courses, third for strokes gained total in windy conditions, fourth on slow Bermuda and fifth in total driving + GIR percentage. I would consider him the man to beat for the final day.
T1 – Ben Griffin – Best Pre-Tournament Rank On My Model (6th)
It is always frustrating looking back on the situation when you don't have an outright ticket on two players that your model liked for the week. On that note, Ben Griffin's 110/1 value looks absurd at this point of the festivities.
The American was my first-ranked player in the field for weighted par-four proximity, and he also took the top spot on the podium in expected par-four production — something we are seeing him take advantage of this week with his 11-under score on those holes.
T3 – Kevin Yu – Best Pre-Tournament Rank On My Model (18th)
Eighteenth might not be a player I loved if the price were different, but Kevin Yu's 50th overall total when it came to his betting odds position did make him worth a wager for me pre-event at over 100/1.
We are going to need a lot better of a start from him tomorrow than what he provided near the end of the round, but his first-place grade in total driving when I slightly geared it toward accuracy and second-place mark in proximity over 200 yards does make him a threat on Sunday if he can get hot with the putter.
T3 – Aaron Baddeley – Best Pre-Tournament Rank On My Model (47th)
I rarely am going to get there on an outright ticket when someone lands outside my first 40 names, but I did have Aaron Baddeley as a value in most markets, and don't find it to be a shock that he is competing on the first page of the leaderboard.
Like Ben Griffin, Baddeley ranked third in my model in weighted par-four scoring and seventh in weighted par-four proximity. There may be something to be said next year about adding more emphasis to those categories since we are seeing the same corollary expectation across the board. I don't think Baddeley wins since he missed my sheet's must-have top-40 range, but the result feels fair.
5th – Brian Gay – Best Pre-Tournament Rank On My Model (95th)
I guess there is a reason Brian Gay has come in 12th, first and third at this event in three years. My numbers like him on slow Bermuda, a category he ranks 11th. However, outside of random short-game metrics, I have yet to find much of an answer for why he continues to succeed at the venue. It is great for him that he continues to make money at this event, but I would let him beat me.
T6 – Grayson Sigg – Best Pre-Tournament Rank On My Model (5th)
You are going to see similar odds out there for Thomas Detry and Greyson Sigg, but round four is about shooting for upside, and Sigg's fifth-place grade happened in the safety portion of my model, meaning the upside to win the event might be lower than some options priced around him. It doesn't mean it can't happen, but I just prefer other routes over Sigg.
T6 – Thomas Detry – Best Pre-Tournament Rank On My Model (1st)
My model liked Thomas Detry less than Seamus Power from an upside perspective, but when we took safety into the mix, it helped propel the Belgian to the number one ranking from an overall sense.
Detry's statistical profile looks stout across the board, and he is well within striking distance on Sunday since he ranked inside the first four names on all three iterations of my model. I consider Detry the best long shot over 20/1 that has a chance, and if it weren't for Power at the top, I might have considered playing this for a small amount.
8 – Will Gordon – Best Pre-Tournament Rank On My Model (10th)
If we are strictly talking DFS for this conversation, I didn't play Will Gordon because of the ownership, but the run he was on did suggest this was possible.
Gordon's lack of positive trajectory for upside doesn't have me jumping for joy when trying to take a chance on him in the outright market, but the ball-striking and GIR returns are elite, and there is a reason he has maintained his odds in matchups for Sunday.
T9 – Justin Lower – Best Pre-Tournament Rank On My Model (2nd)
Justin Lower was another spot that pinpoints the public getting exponentially better in DFS builds over the past year. Lower's 17.7% projection in my sheet placed him second when it came to ownership, but gamers who grabbed him have to be excited about where they sit.
Lower's top-10 grades in strokes gained in windy conditions and on slow Bermuda tracks are both being shown repeatedly this week, and the fourth-place weighted par-four pre-event output adds his name to the list of golfers close to the top of the leaderboard.
T9 – Denny McCarthy – Best Pre-Tournament Rank On My Model (8th)
We talked about this exact sort of an expectation for Denny McCarthy on Links + Locks. The upside was always going to be the biggest question mark for the week, but the safety was the best of anyone in the field, even if my model didn't seem to indicate that because of some recent middling results.
With all that being said, McCarthy has a shot at stealing this title away from the pack tomorrow, and he is the number one ranked wind player in the field if the conditions get severe. I'll trust me pre-tournament research and say it doesn't happen, but it feels like a spot to me where Seamus Power, Ben Griffin or Thomas Detry walk out of Port Royal victorious.
Overall Breakdown Of My Pre-Event Model:
(7) Golfers Inside The Top-10
(1) In The Top-20
(1) Between 40-50
(1) Outside The Top-90