2024 Travelers Championship Best Bets & Expert Picks for TPC River Highlands

2024 Travelers Championship Best Bets & Expert Picks for TPC River Highlands article feature image

Via Getty Images/Action Network Design. Pictured: Denny McCarthy (left) and Ludvig Åberg (right).

The PGA Tour visits Cromwell, Connecticut for the Travelers Championship as Keegan Bradley looks to defend his crown after taking down this signature event by three shots last year. Let's get into our 2024 Travelers Championship best bets.

Spencer Aguiar, Nick Bretwisch, Matt Gannon and Tony Sartori have expert picks as 71 golfers will clash this week at TPC River Highlands in the final signature event of the year on the PGA Tour.

The course is a 6,835-yard par-70 designed by Pete Dye in 1982 and renovated in 1989 by Bobby Weed. While most signature events have been contested on the longest and most difficult courses on the PGA Tour, TPC River Highlands is an exception to the rule as it will play as the shortest course on Tour this season.

Here's everything you need to know, along with our 2024 Travelers Championship best bets and expert picks for the weekend. And for even more on the Travelers, check out 2024 Travelers Championship First-Round Leader Picks: FRL Bets for Thursday.

2024 Travelers Championship Best Bets, Expert Picks

Spencer Aguiar: Xander Schauffele Outright +750 (DraftKings)

While my best bet this week is technically J.T. Poston -110 over Billy Horschel, we moved that number at countless shops before this article could go live, so I'll veer away from that wager and into the only other play of mine this week that will have over 0.50 units at risk in Xander Schauffele to win this event.

You know a board is BAD (and not BAD like Bryson Aldrich DeChambeau) when I start veering into the outright market for this article, but here we are since there is very little left on my plate outside of this wager to discuss.

I have discussed this quite a bit in 2024, but my model has seen a massive gap occur between everyone else and the big three of Scottie Scheffler, Rory McIlroy and Schauffele.

With McIlroy now no longer in the field, thus removing one of those big-three options, this creates a board that carries a stark contrast in Strokes Gained: Total over a two-year running perspective inside of my model when looking at Scheffler and Schauffele versus everyone else.

I will get more into those thoughts this week on our Links + Locks Travelers Championship Tournament Preview — which you can find early on Wednesday morning wherever you get your podcasts.

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Matt Gannon: Ludvig Åberg Top 10 +130 (FanDuel)

Ludvig Åberg is at the point of his career which I call the “Ignorance is Bliss” state.

Think back to the young versions of Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas. When they accomplished great feats on the biggest stages early in their careers, they continued to build off of their early success.

Åberg is similarly in the zone where it is simply point and shoot. Guys like McIlroy, JT and Spieth are filled with pressure and thoughts now while Åberg is not. There's no sport as mental as golf, and I love where his head is at.

I can see Åberg winning this event as he has been oddly amazing on club-down courses, including his lone PGA Tour victory so far at the RSM Classic late in 2023.

Tony Sartori: Denny McCarthy Top 10 +550 (FanDuel)

While I’m not sure that Denny McCarthy has the all-around game to actually win this tournament against such a strong field, he is one of the highest-floor players teeing it up this week in Connecticut. You know that no matter how much his game may struggle, he will always have his putter.

McCarthy ranks second on the PGA Tour in Strokes Gained: Putting this season, but there is not a single player I would take on the greens over him at the moment.

He enters with momentum after making the weekend in nine of his past 10 tournaments and boasts two top-10 finishes over that stretch.

His biggest weakness is distance off the tee, but that is nullified at a course like TPC River Highlands, which plays shorter than 6,900 yards. Therefore, it is not surprising that McCarthy finished seventh here last season, and I believe he will put together a similar performance this year.

2024 Travelers Championship Expert Picks, Fades

Favorites We’re Backing

  • Aguiar: Xander Schauffele +900
  • Bretwisch: Ludvig Åberg +1600
  • Gannon: Ludvig Åberg +1600
  • Sartori: Viktor Hovland +2200

Mid-Tier Golfer to Back

  • Aguiar: Wyndham Clark +7000
  • Bretwisch: Shane Lowry +7500
  • Gannon: Sepp Straka +6600
  • Sartori: Russell Henley +4500

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Best Long Shot

  • Aguiar: J.T. Poston 100-1
  • Bretwisch: Akshay Bhatia 90-1
  • Gannon: Cameron Young 80-1
  • Sartori: J.T. Poston 100-1

Biggest Bust

  • Aguiar: Sahith Theegala +3500
  • Bretwisch: Hideki Matsuyama +2700
  • Gannon: Collin Morikawa +1200
  • Sartori: Ludvig Åberg +1600

Contrarian Player To Target

  • Aguiar: Viktor Hovland +2200
  • Bretwisch: Viktor Hovland +2200
  • Gannon: Max Homa +6500
  • Sartori: Corey Conners +3800

Your Betting Strategy for the Travelers Championship

Aguiar: It will be interesting to see how the minor reconstruction of TPC River Highlands will change the complexity of the track. The venue has always been known for its rollover predictability, but changes were made to try and discourage bomb-and-gouge play by narrowing the fairways and adding thicker rough to the mix.

Running a model will depend on how critical these course shifts will be when trying to recalibrate for this go-around. My guess is that they are less pertinent in terms of how they impact the venue than people will project, which is why I am going to expect more or less of the same until proven otherwise.

Gannon: The name of the game around TPC River Highlands is generally driving accuracy and wedge play. While that remains true, this is the second year of elite fields making the trip to Cromwell. This event is usually littered with short and accurate hitters, not elite total drivers.

While playing from the fairway at a high rate will do no harm, there is no comparison to a long and straight hitter. Since all of the top guys are here, there are plenty to choose from. I believe Total Driving will be the biggest key to success here.

This will also be a very contrarian look to TPC River highlands as everyone will be touting the plotters this week.

I am pleased that 90% of the best drivers in this field did not have to deal with a ton of weekend contention at the U.S. Open. That takes a massive toll on golfers mentally, and I believe Cantlay and some others will come out of the gates slow.

I am calling for this year's Travelers to have as big a distance bias as ever.

Sartori: TPC River Highlands is a par-70, 6,835-yard track that is one of the shortest on Tour. Subsequently, it is one of the easiest courses on the circuit, and we typically see an abundance of low scores.

The way to separate up top is with consistent iron play that sets up easy birdie looks. Last season, each of the top-six finishers here ranked in the top 22 in the field in Strokes Gained: Approach the Green, the only statistic in which such a trend occurred.

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