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2023 American Express Picks: Outright Bets, Props on Jason Day & More

2023 American Express Picks: Outright Bets, Props on Jason Day & More article feature image
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Richard Heathcote/Getty Images. Pictured: Jason Day.

While we didn’t hit a winner at the Sony Open (congrats to all of the Si Woo Kim backers), we did cash the Andrew Putnam top-five bet. We didn’t quite get the full payout due to the dead-heat reduction, but it still led to a profitable week. We’ll look to carry that momentum into The American Express, which will be played at three different courses:

  • PGA West Stadium (Two Rounds): Par 72, 7,187 yards
  • Nicklaus Tournament (One Round): Par 72, 7,147 yards
  • La Quinta Country Club (One Round): Par 72, 7,060 yards
If you are unfamiliar with the format, golfers will play each of the three courses in one of the first three rounds before the cut is made. The final round will be held at the Stadium Course, which is a Pete Dye design. The pro-am format also adds a little wrinkle, as the PGA Tour isn’t going to grow the rough up and have impossible pin locations for a bunch of amateurs. This leads to a lot of birdies for the professionals. The winning score of this event is generally in the 25-under par range, and a quick glance at the forecast suggests we could potentially approach the 30-under par range this week. That may seem like a stretch, but the maximum wind gust over the course of all four days is currently nine MPH. It’s going to be perfect weather on three easy golf courses that all feature four par-fives. We have a very strong field on tap this week, which is always favorable for those who don’t like to bet the top of the board. Jon Rahm (+650), Scottie Scheffler (+1000), and Patrick Cantlay (+1100) are all live to win this week, but where’s the fun in betting on the heavy favorites? There are some extremely enticing odds a bit down the board.

Outright Bets

Cam Davis +5000 (DraftKings)

Cam Davis is poised for another win on the PGA Tour. His form over the last six months has been solid, especially when it comes to his ball striking. His T32 finish at the Sony Open appears middling on paper, but he gained 4.9 strokes off the tee and 2.9 strokes on approach. A better week on and around the greens would have put him in contention on Sunday. He seems to like The American Express, as he’s played here three times and has never finished outside of the top 30. In his last appearance (2021), he finished third behind Si Woo Kim and Patrick Cantlay.

Jason Day +7000 (FanDuel)

It doesn’t take much for sportsbooks to get me to bet on Jason Day, so I’ll gladly take the +7000 that FanDuel is offering. Day has talked about his improved health (specifically his back) a lot over the last six months, and we’ve certainly seen the results follow. He had a four-event stretch in the swing season where he finished T16, T21, T8, and T11. He gained 19 strokes from tee to green in those events. I’m all for Day having a career resurgence, and it wouldn’t surprise me if a win came on a Pete Dye course, as he’s been one of the best on tour on Dye tracks over the years.

Top-10 Bets

Adam Hadwin +700 (FanDuel)

If you look at Adam Hadwin’s statistics, they are generally all over the place. However, the last time we saw him (Houston), he gained 2.4 strokes off the tee and 7.6 strokes on approach. He is one of those golfers who can have spike weeks with his irons and with his putter. He tends to play his best on the West Coast and he clearly loves this event. He’s a perfect 7-for-7 here with four top-six finishes during that stretch.

Ben Taylor +1300 (FanDuel)

My model has spit out Taylor as a good DFS play and top-10 bet for the last four months, and I haven’t had nearly as much exposure as I should have. After another top-five finish last week at the Sony Open, I will not be making that same mistake again. He is consistently gaining strokes off the tee, on approach and on the greens. That recipe translates well to all courses. Let’s have a week my friends.

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