3M Open Picks & Odds: Bet Taylor Pendrith, Garrick Higgo & Sungjae Im at TPC Twin Cities
Via Orlando Ramirez/Getty Images. Pictured: Taylor Pendrith of Canada lines up a putt second hole during the first round of the Mexico Open at Vidanta on April 27, 2023 in Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco.
Click arrow to expand 3M Open odds via bet365
|Erik van Rooyen||+20000|
|Frankie Capan III||+35000|
|Paul Haley II||+100000|
We’re on to Minnesota for the 2023 3M Open.
As major championship season closes, the PGA Tour descends into what can only be called a controlled lull for a few weeks, with tournaments that are less about star-power and more about playoff pushes.
There’s not a whole lot we learned at Royal Liverpool that should leave us prepped and ready for TPC Twin Cities, but there’s plenty we’ve gleaned in the past four editions of this tournament to point us in the right direction.
Really, we only need to look at the winners’ list, which includes Matthew Wolff, Cameron Champ and Tony Finau – an unsubtle hint that banging driver long and straight is even more advantageous here than most other venues, despite playing just over 7,200 yards. That said, driving distance is just a bit less important here than at the average PGA Tour stop, but Strokes Gained: Off the Tee receives a fairly large bump in relevance.
I’ll be targeting those who are best with the big stick in their hands, starting with a few guys at bigger opening odds, essentially allowing us to build a bigger card and take a few more outright chances than usual.
Outright Winner (Short odds)
One player to win the tournament
Taylor Pendrith (+6000)
As will be pointed out more than once this week, my outright selection with short odds doesn’t have odds that are very short, and my outright selection with long odds doesn’t have odds that are very long. Maybe it’s that Brian Harman recency bias having an impact, but I believe this is a nice week to look further down the board for a player with a juicier number.
That doesn’t mean one of the bigger names can’t win – Cameron Young (+1400) and Sungjae Im (+2200) are both players I considered for this spot – but I ultimately landed on Taylor Pendrith at 3-4 times the price and (in my opinion) inside of one-quarter to one-third of their win probability.
The Canadian tends to heat up during the summer months. Last year, he returned in July after missing four months due to injury and promptly finished inside the top 15 in each of his next four starts.
After a poor start to this year, he now owns a pair of top-15 results in his last three starts, again hitting that summer trend.
Sure, maybe there’s something to the fact that this time of year also tends to coincide with some inferior fields, but that’s the case again this week on a course which should fit his game nicely.
Outright Winner (Long odds)
One player to win the tournament
Garrick Higgo (+8000)
Over the past few months, Garrick Higgo has started doing the Si Woo Kim thing. What I mean is that he’s transformed from a high-upside, high-volatility type of player to a more consistent one, though he doesn’t yet own as consistently high of a baseline as Kim.
Higgo has gained strokes off the tee in 11 of his last 12 starts and not coincidentally owns five results of 33rd or better during that time. The real issue with picking him for an outright is that he hasn’t seriously challenged for a title since the second event on the PGA Tour’s season-long schedule back in early October, but the South African has shown an ability to climb a leaderboard in a hurry when he’s playing his best golf.
At this number, I like taking a chance on this being one of those weeks. Perhaps more importantly, though, is that starting the card with a couple of players who own longer odds should open up the options to a few more outrights than usual, which means I’ll also include some combination of Eric Cole (+5500), Adam Svensson (+7000), Austin Eckroat (+8000), Sam Stevens (+10000), Kevin Yu (+10000), Callum Tarren (+11000) and Erik Van Rooyen (+30000).
Potential selections for one-and-done pools
Sepp Straka (+3500)
When odds were first released on Monday morning, this was the number that stuck out as one that all the early birds would hammer, instantly rendering a shorter price. I mean, Sepp Straka is coming off a victory at the John Deere Classic and a share of second place at The Open in his last two starts, so the form is certainly there.
While I love his game, I’m not so sure I can see him winning again so quickly, though his form should keep him in the mix, making him one of the less volatile options if you’re either staying away from the top of this board or have already used up the big names for OADs.
Cam Davis (+4000)
If you asked people to name which player had the worst week at Royal Liverpool, the popular answer would be either Justin Thomas or Dustin Johnson.
In truth, though, it might be Cam Davis, who despite being ranked 55th in the world and finishing T4 at the PGA Championship two months ago, didn’t even get a chance to tee it up, hanging out all week as first alternate while nobody else withdrew from the field.
Maybe that should serve as motivation for this week, or maybe he’s just a strong course fit, considering he won at Detroit GC two years ago on what qualifies as a comparable track.
Eric Cole (+5500)
I love the immediacy in Eric Cole’s game. Even if you didn’t know he was a 34-year-old rookie who’s spent much of the past decade-and-a-half on the mini tours, you could watch him play and guess it, as he competes like a guy who doesn’t have much time to waste.
He got into contention at the Honda Classic earlier this year and lost in a playoff, but I can’t wait to see him get into contention again because I think he’s got a lot of Brian Harman in him, with the ability to play mad and pull off the shots when they mean the most.
Placement Market Bets
One player to finish in the top five
Sungjae Im (+375 for top-five finish)
As I’ve written previously, something a little weird happened to Sungjae Im after he decided to make what seemed like a weird decision to play in his native South Korea prior to the PGA Championship, though I’m sure it was a combination of pleasing a sponsor and pleasing the home country supporters.
He’d finished 16th or better in each of his five starts before that trip, then won in Korea, but upon his return there were rumors of an injury – or at least some physical discomfort. He missed the cut at Oak Hill then proceeded to finish outside of the top 20 in each of his next six starts.
Finally, last week he looked a bit closer to his usual self, finishing exactly T20 at Royal Liverpool. Returning to a place where he was T2 a year ago should give him some good vibes once again, and I can see another title contention.
One player to finish in the top 10
Kevin Yu (+750 for top-10 finish)
Despite missing four months due to injury, Kevin Yu continues to be a statistical phenomenon, ranking third on the PGA Tour in SG: Off the Tee and 11th in SG: Tee to Green.
He’s not going to putt well every week, but when he does, he’s going to contend, as he did at the John Deere Classic a few weeks ago. He gained 1.81 strokes putting per round there in a T6 finish when his tee to green numbers weren’t even their usual baseline.
Right now, the 24-year-old is still a bit of an unknown to the masses, but he’s going to be very good for a very long time. This feels like a smart week to make a play on that ball-striking prowess.
One player to finish in the top 20
Keith Mitchell (+210 for top-20 finish)
Lost amongst my own personal blind faith in Keith Mitchell’s abilities and impending leap into the next echelon of high-level players is the fact that, well, he just hasn’t played very well. It’s honestly been pretty ugly, as he’s finished outside the top 30 in 11 of his last 12 starts.
Perhaps the oddsmakers like him as much as I do – or maybe they’re just preying on the fact that I’ll usually have a little outright nibble – but it says something about Mitchell that he’s fared this poorly, and yet he’s still 35/1 this week.
What it says, exactly, I’m not completely sure, but it definitely says something.
If there’s a bit of reason for optimism, it’s that his iron play has been much improved in his last few measured starts, while his poor play around the greens should be mitigated by larger putting surfaces at TPC Twin Cities.
One player to finish in the top 30
Erik Van Rooyen (+320 for top-30 finish)
Let’s just say I’m very, very interested in Erik Van Rooyen from every perspective this week. A South African with Minnesota ties, he’s been ranked as high as 40th in the world, but his game has struggled over the past two years.
That said, a furious back-nine finish at last week’s Barracuda Championship left him in a share of sixth place and should give him good vibes at what is essentially a homecoming party this week.
I’m listing him for the conservative play here, but an outright ticket at 300/1 on a guy who knows how to win at this level will certainly be part of my card.
One player to finish top-40
Caleb VanArragon (+800 for top-40 finish)
Look, I don't profess to know a huge amount about Caleb VanArregon, and I certainly can't break down the best and worst parts of his game.
But here's what I do know: He's a local kid who won the Minnesota Open by nine strokes, then he won the Minnesota State Amateur by 12. I don't know how any of that will translate against a field of PGA Tour regulars, but he obviously has plenty of game.
I'm looking forward to watching it on this stage.
DFS Free Bingo Square
A safe plug-and-play option for DFS lineups
Before the odds were released, I thought Cameron Young at something around 20/1 might be my favorite outright play, but 14/1 is simply too short for a player who still has some questions to answer.
That said, a pair of top-10s in his last two starts should have us forgetting that mid-April to late-June swoon where he finished outside the top 30 in seven straight starts.
Young appears to be back playing his usual brand of no-nonsense golf, and while I don’t want to pay up for an outright on a player who’s yet to win at this level, this should be another very strong week for a guy who probably feels like he’s got some catching up to do.
A medium-priced option for DFS lineups
A six-event drought of nothing better than 40th place ended with Adam Svensson finishing T21 at the John Deere Classic a few weeks ago, and while he doesn’t have a great track record after taking a week off, getting to take two of them off in a row after a lengthy run of play should leave him more rested than many of his fellow competitors.
A lower-priced option for DFS lineups
The truth is, I like Callum Tarren more this week than simply “burying” him under the DFS ‘Dog category – especially because he tends to be a high-ceiling/low-floor type of player.
If it’s good, it can be very good, as we saw in last year’s edition of this event, when he finished in a share of seventh place. Don’t be afraid to sprinkle him throughout the card for some more aggressive plays, as well.
One player to post the low round Thursday
Sam Stevens (+8000 for FRL)
Entering the season, the knock I’d heard on Sam Stevens – if you could even call it a knock on a rookie who’d yet to play on the PGA Tour – is that he was a strong starter and potentially weak finisher, though I’ll chalk up his final-round scoring average rank of 184th to just being part of the learning process.
He does rank more than 100 spots higher in the opening frame, and while he hasn’t broken 70 in his last seven Thursday rounds, he does have a 65, a 66 and a few 67s to his name.
If you don’t want to play this much of a longshot here, then Emiliano Grillo, who ranks 39th in first-round scoring average, makes some sense, as well.
One player who should beat comparable players
Austin Eckroat (+8000)
I easily could’ve listed Austin Eckroat for one of my fave outright plays this week – and if this event was taking place a month earlier, I probably would have. Starting with the AT&T Byron Nelson, the Oklahoma State product finished 2nd-16th-30th-10th-24th in five straight starts.
He’s cooled off a little, perhaps fatigued in a missed cut at the Rocket Mortgage Classic and not quite experienced enough on the links in a T65 at the Scottish Open.
That shouldn’t hide the fact that his best golf took place very recently, and he should still be running hot, despite those two latest results. I’ll play him for an outright before this number moves (and I think it will), and he certainly makes for a nice matchup target against some similarly priced players.
Also Receiving Votes
Other players who should provide value
Ludvig Aberg (+3500), Sahith Theegala (+3500), Gary Woodand (+3500), Nicolai Hojgaard (+5000), Carson Young (+18000), Carl Yuan (+20000), Trevor Cone (+25000), Brent Grant (+40000)