2023 RBC Heritage Picks, Odds: Collin Morikawa, Justin Thomas, More Bets
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images. Pictured: Collin Morikawa.
- Matt Vincenzi has four players on his outright betting card for the 2023 RBC Heritage.
- Hilton Head will host an elite field this week, with the tournament now serving as an elevated event.
- Check out Vincenzi's RBC Heritage picks below.
Click arrow to expand RBC Heritage odds via BetMGM
|Min Woo Lee||+6600|
|Si Woo Kim||+8000|
|Erik van Rooyen||+25000|
|Davis Love III||+150000|
Just a two-hour drive from Augusta National, the PGA TOUR heads to Harbour Town Golf Links in Hilton Head Island, S.C., where we’ll make our 2023 RBC Heritage picks. Hilton Head Island is a golfer’s paradise and Harbour Town is one of the most beautiful and scenic courses on the PGA TOUR.
Harbour Town Golf Links is a par-71 that measures 7,121 yards and features Bermuda grass greens. A Pete Dye design, the course is heavily tree lined and features small greens and many dog legs, protecting it from “bomb-and-gauge” type golfers.
The field is loaded this week with 132 golfers. While last year was quite possibly the best field in RBC Heritage history, the event will take another big leap forward in 2023. This week’s tournament is yet another designated event, meaning there is a $20 million prize pool.
With golfers only able to skip one designated event per season, all the big names are in attendance other than Rory McIlroy, Hideki Matsuyama, Jason Day and Will Zalatoris, who announced on Monday that he will miss the rest of the 2022-23 PGA Tour season.
Past Winners at Harbour Town
- 2022: Jordan Spieth (-13)
- 2021: Stewart Cink (-19)
- 2020: Webb Simpson (-22)
- 2019: CT Pan (-12)
- 2018: Sotoshi Kodaira (-12)
- 2017: Wesley Bryan (-13)
- 2016: Branden Grace (-9)
- 2015: Jim Furyk (-18)
5 Key Stats For Harbour Town
Let’s take a look at five metrics key for Harbour Town Golf Links to determine which golfers boast top marks in each category over their past 24 rounds.
1. Strokes Gained: Approach
Strokes Gained: Approach is exceedingly important this week. The greens at Harbour Town are about half the size of PGA TOUR average and feature the second-smallest greens on the tour. Typical of a Pete Dye design, golfers will pay the price for missed greens.
Total SG: Approach Over Past 24 Rounds
- Tom Hoge (+28.9)
- Max Homa (+27.6)
- Tony Finau (+25.3)
- Scottie Scheffler (+25.2)
- Collin Morikawa (+24.9)
2. Fairways Gained
The fairways at Harbour Town are tree lined and feature many dog legs. Bombers tend to struggle at the course because it forces layups and doesn’t allow long drivers to overpower it. Accuracy is far more important than power.
Fairways Gained Over Past 24 Rounds
- Russell Henley (+45.6)
- Collin Morikawa (+42.1)
- Adam Long (+39.9)
- Tyler Duncan (+38.8)
- Tom Kim (+38.5)
3. Strokes Gained: Total at Pete Dye Designs
Pete Dye specialists tend to play very well at Harbour Town. Si Woo Kim, Matt Kuchar, Jim Furyk and Webb Simpson are all Pete Dye specialists who have had great success here. It is likely we see some more specialists near the top of the leaderboard this week.
SG: TOT Pete Dye per round over past 24 rounds:
- Shane Lowry (+2.0)
- Corey Conners (+1.8)
- Scottie Scheffler (+1.8)
- Tyrrell Hatton (+1.7)
- Sungjae Im (+1.7)
4. Strokes Gained: Short Game (Bermuda)
Strokes Gained: Short Game factors in both around the green and putting. With many green-side bunkers and tricky green complexes, both statistics will be important. Past winners — such as Jim Furyk, Wes Bryan and Webb Simpson — highlight how crucial the short game skill set is around Harbour Town.
SG: SG Over Past 24 Rounds
- Maverick McNealy (+36.1)
- Jon Rahm (+33.8)
- Sam Burns (+31.1)
- Tommy Fleetwood (+29.7)
- Ben Griffin (+28.7)
5. Greens in Regulation Gained
The recipe for success at Harbour Town Golf Links is hitting fairways and greens. Missing either will prove to be consequential — golfers must be in total control of the ball to win.
Greens in Regulation: Gained over past 24 rounds
- Scottie Scheffler (+35.8)
- Stephan Jaeger (+29.9)
- Jon Rahm (+28.9)
- Corey Conners (+28.5)
- Tony Finau (+28.5)
The RBC Heritage Model Rankings
Below, I’ve compiled overall model rankings using a combination of the five key statistical categories previously discussed — SG: Approach (26%), Fairways Gained (20%), SG: SG (18%), SG: Pete Dye (18%) and GIR Gained (18%)
- Scottie Scheffler
- Tyrrell Hatton
- Tony Finau
- Jon Rahm
- Sungjae Im
- Max Homa
- Collin Morikawa
- Matt Kuchar
- Justin Rose
- Sepp Straka
2023 RBC Heritage Picks
Collin Morikawa (+1800) (FanDuel / DraftKings)
It’s been a strange 2023 for Collin Morikawa. In his seven-stroke play starts, he’s had five finishes in the top 13, with two missed cuts to go along with them. While the results are encouraging, he hasn’t truly been deep into contention since the season opener at Kapalua, where he unfortunately coughed up a big lead on the back nine on Sunday.
Over the years, players who’ve gotten deep into contention at the Masters have struggled to convert a win at the RBC Heritage the following week. This year’s Masters was truly a grind, with players playing up to 30 holes on Sunday — not to mention they battled rain and wind most of the week. Therefore, this week I prefer players who didn’t spend the mental and physical energy it takes to contend deep into a major championship. Morikawa fits the bill as a player who showed signs of sharp play but never was really in the mix.
Morikawa’s past two starts at the event have resulted in a seventh-place finish in 2021 and a 26th-place finish last year. In those two starts, the two-time major champion gained 7.6 and 7.1 strokes, respectively, on approach. If the short game cooperates, which is always a risky proposition for Morikawa, Harbour Town feels like the right spot for the 26-year-old to get his first win of the year.
Pick: Collin Morikawa
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Justin Thomas (+2800) (DraftKings)
Last week was a major disappointment for Justin Thomas. He surely expected to have a strong showing at the Masters; instead, he got caught in some bad weather early Saturday and bogeyed three of his last four holes to miss the cut by one shot.
While I’m sure it’s not a consolation to him, the missed cut is probably a good thing for his chances this week. Thomas feels a lot like Jordan Spieth, who unexpectedly missed the cut at the Masters last year only to win at Harbour Town. In fact, six of the past 10 winners of the RBC Heritage have missed the cut at the Masters.
It hasn’t been a great year for Thomas, but as we’ve learned in the past, any time the two-time major winner slips to this range on the betting board (2018 Bridgestone Invitational comes to mind), it’s a good idea to buy low.
While a good deal of his competitors were battling at Augusta National all weekend, Thomas had the opportunity to rest and refocus to get his game where it needs to be. He should be highly motivated to bounce back with a victory.
Pick: Justin Thomas
Matt Fitzpatrick (+2800) (DraftKings)
Matt Fitzpatrick’s year started off with a bulging disc in his neck, which caused him to miss 4-of-8 cuts in 2023. However, recent results seem to indicate that he’s healthy once again. Fitzpatrick went 2-1 at WGC Dell Match Play and followed that up with a solid showing at Augusta National. He finished in a tie for 10th and gained 4.16 strokes on approach.
The Englishman showed he can compete in the strongest of fields by winning the 2022 U.S. Open at a course he was extremely comfortable at. Fitzpatrick should be comfortable at Harbour Town as well — he’s said in the past that it’s his favorite course in the world. He’s finished in the top-15 in three of his last five trips to the course, and he is rounding into form at the right time to challenge for his first plaid jacket.
Pick: Matt Fitzpatrick
Shane Lowry (+3000) (DraftKings)
In the spirit of transparency, I bet on Shane Lowry at +4000 when the odds came out on Monday morning, but the price has been bet down a fair amount. Given the reasons why I like him this week, that makes some sense.
Harbour Town is most definitely one of Lowry’s favorite courses on the PGA Tour. In his past four starts there, he’s finished in the top 10 three times, including third twice. It was also encouraging to see the Irishman finish third here last year despite getting deep into contention at the Masters the previous week.
Lowry has been playing good golf, and he had another strong showing at the Masters with a 16th-place finish. His approach play has been excellent, but he’s been held back by his putter. Taking an optimistic approach, the former Open Champion has never lost strokes putting at Harbour Town, so there may be something about these greens he finds appealing.
Lowry is one of the best players in the world on Pete Dye designs, and he should be able to take advantage of a week where some of the top players may have withdrawn or are lacking motivation.
Pick: Shane Lowry
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