2024 Houston Open Data-Driven Pick: Best Bet for Sunday

2024 Houston Open Data-Driven Pick: Best Bet for Sunday article feature image

(Photo by Raj Mehta/Getty Images) Pictured: Chan Kim.

With a Stephan Jaeger 50/1 pre-event outright wager in our pocket heading into Sunday, we will need to overcome the unconquerable foe of Scottie Scheffler to get the ticket across the finish line.

That doesn't sound too challenging when all Scheffler has done entering the week is go back-to-back at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and PLAYERS Championship, becoming the first player to ever rank No. 1 in all weighable areas of my model pre-tournament when diving into this week's Texas Children's Houston Open.

Unfortunately, the concerns don't stop there, as Jaeger's three-day scoring projection has been more glitz than glamour after failing to land inside the top 15 on any given round with his ball-striking marks. Typically, those concerns would bite you while competing for a title when the pressure rises in round four, but I do have some outside hope that the fourth-rated weighted scorer in my model pre-event can find the much-needed elements of his game Sunday to slay Goliath.

I mean, who ever thought Buster Douglas was going to knock out Mike Tyson, right?

If you haven't already, you can find me on Twitter (@TeeOffSports). There, I provide a link to my pre-tournament model, a powerful and interactive data spreadsheet that allows user input to create custom golf rankings. That sheet is released every Monday, so be sure to check it out and construct your own numbers from my database of information.

2024 Houston Open

Chan Kim -110 over Martin Laird (DraftKings)

My model worries marginally that most of the intrigue around Chan Kim stems from his tournament-leading 4.63-shot off-the-tee and approach performance in the second round, which helped him to make the weekend. However, I am willing to ignore those concerns because of Martin Laird's bottom-three portfolio projection through the first three days of the Houston Open.

Laird placed alongside Joseph Bramlett and Harry Hall as one of only three players in this field who surpassed their expected scoring performance by over 25 spots on the leaderboard each time teeing it up this week.

The short-game return isn't overly shocking for Laird since his past 24 rounds had seen an uptick compared to his baseline both around the green and with his putter. Still, the red flag situation always occurs when someone ends up exceeding their short-game baseline production by 4.31 strokes.

Add that to the 5.78-stroke disparity between Laird and Kim in scoring output when you combine actual ball striking with the baseline short-game results, and you get a wager here that may have been fairly listed at -110 pre-event but experienced a nearly 16-point shift when looking into "fair market price" heading into Sunday.

I will take the 3.07% implied win probability edge on this wager and close out my week with something my math believes is 55.75% to win in round four.

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