2023 Honda Classic Odds, Picks: Target Aaron Wise & Dylan Frittelli

2023 Honda Classic Odds, Picks: Target Aaron Wise & Dylan Frittelli article feature image

Via Andy Lyons/Getty Images. Pictured: Aaron Wise of the United States plays an approach shot on the fourth hole during the second round of the Sentry Tournament of Champions at Plantation Course at Kapalua Golf Club on January 06, 2023 in Lahaina, Hawaii.

If you were a fan of the last two events because of the stacked fields and huge purses, then you'll have to talk yourself into liking this week's event. The Honda Classic has really been impacted by the schedule over the last few years and is in one of the worst spots possible this year. It is sandwiched between the Genesis Invitational and the Arnold Palmer Invitational, both of which are designated events that feature more than twice the payout of The Honda Classic.

While there's a weak field on tap this week in Florida, there are certainly some positives. Without many of the big names teeing it up, the chance of there being a long-shot winner increases exponentially. On top of that, the volatility is amped up on a course that features water hazards in play on 15 of the 18 holes. It's never easy to pick the winner of an event, but I can assure you there will be some surprise names on the first page of the leaderboard on Sunday afternoon.

As far as the course, PGA National is one of the most difficult on the PGA TOUR each and every season. Over the last five years, it has been in the top seven in difficulty, and the average winning score during that stretch has been nine-under par. On the scorecard, the course plays at a par 70 that measures 7,125 yards.

A deep dive into the statistics shows why this is such a difficult course. The fairways are tough to hit, the rough is thick (likely 2.5 inches this week), the greens are tough to hit, the scrambling success rate here is low, and there are only two par fives on the scorecard. The course is right on the water, which means it is exposed to the elements. We aren't expecting huge gusts this week, but should see around 10 MPH wind for all four days of the event.

This is one of those weeks where I will be focusing less on statistics and more on broad approaches like golfers who play well on difficult courses, golfers who play well in Florida, golfers who putt well on Bermudagrass greens, and golfers who have had success in the wind. Patience is critical as well, but it's hard to know the true patience of each golfer on TOUR.

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Favorite Outright Bet

Aaron Wise (+2500 on FanDuel)

It wasn't that long ago when a large portion of the golf community was betting Wise at lower odds in much stronger fields. Back-to-back missed cuts have led to some very enticing odds in a weak field. While the form isn't ideal, both of the missed cuts were within two shots of the cut line, and they were unique events (pro-am at the AmEx and the WM Phoenix Open).

Wise has always been a strong ball striker, and over the last year, he has become a very good putter. He's a top-10 putter on Bermuda, and over the last three years, no player in this field has performed better on difficult golf courses.

Pick: Aaron Wise Outright +2500

Favorite Long-Shot Outright Bet

Dylan Frittelli (+10000 on DraftKings)

For full transparency, I am betting a half-unit on the Frittelli outright and then also sprinkling in some placement bets. While he tends to miss a lot of cuts, that shouldn't be viewed as a negative when it comes to the betting market. We have a binary outcome with bets — they either hit or they don't. This isn't like DFS where a T50 finish is better than a missed cut.

Frittelli is good off the tee, he gains strokes on approach, he gains strokes around the green, and he's a top-10 putter on Bermuda. He's a really nice fit for PGA National, so it's no surprise that he's posted two top-20 finishes here the last five years.

Placement Bets

Danny Willett Top 10 (+700 on FanDuel)

Willett has been playing through a shoulder injury and has a wide range of potential outcomes each time he tees it up, but there are a lot of reasons to like his chances this week. For starters, he's coming off of a T18 finish at Riviera where he gained 5.8 strokes tee to green.

Throughout his career, he's been a golfer who has performed his best on difficult courses. We know he likes to play in the wind and has a very good track record in Florida. At +700 to finish in the top 10, he bring solid value to the betting card.

Christiaan Bezuidenhout Top 20 (+280 on FanDuel)

C-Bez hasn't been in the best of form recently, which is why he has such long odds this week. During his time on the PGA TOUR, he's had a very specific course type that he has played well on — short Bermuda tracks that are usually Par 70s.

I'm not worried about subpar finishes at the WM Phoenix Open or the Genesis Invitational. Prior to that, he finished T11 at the AmEx (Bermuda course). He has been very good in Florida throughout his career, and he tends to shine on difficult courses. I'm sprinkling a little on the outright, but my favorite bet for him is a top 20.

Pick: Christiaan Bezuidenhout Top 20 +280

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