AT&T Byron Nelson Round 2 Best Bets: Buy Will Zalatoris, Hideki Matsuyama to Make Moves
Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images. Pictured: Will Zalatoris
In Round 1 of the AT&T Byron Nelson, Sebastian Munoz put on a masterful display. The 29-year-old shot a 12-under par 60 with nine birdies, two eagles and one bogey.
The 60 was good for a new course record, clearing Sam Burns’ second-round 62 from 2021.
While Munoz’s round was incredibly impressive, and he looks as if he will be tough to beat going forward, there is a lot of golf still to be played.
With plenty of big names lurking, the Colombian will need to keep his foot on the gas if he wants to earn a second PGA TOUR victory on his resume.
Round 2 Best Bets
Round 2 3-ball: Hideki Matsuyama (+150) over Mackenzie Hughes and Jason Day
Matsuyama put on a brilliant ball striking display on Thursday. He gained a field leading 3.79 strokes on approach and 4.55 strokes from tee-to-green.
Coming into the week, there was some reason to be weary in regards to Matsuyama’s health, but his opening-round performance should quell those concerns.
Hughes had a solid day on approach, but really struggled off the tee, losing 1.75 strokes to the field. The Canadian made up for it by gaining 1.61 strokes with his putter, and although he’s typically great in that department, that will be a tough pace to maintain.
Day played well on Thursday, but I simply don’t trust him on a round-by-round basis at the moment.
Will Zalatoris Top 5 Finish (+1800)
Zalatoris just couldn’t get it going on Thursday, but his typically strong approach play was about as sharp as usual. He gained 2.12 strokes in that category, which was good for 18th in the field in Round 1.
The 25-year-old was awful with his putter, though, losing 2.85 strokes to the field. Zalatoris isn’t a good overall putter, but I don’t expect him to keep that pace and lose over 11 strokes putting for the week. He is due for some positive regression in this area.
The Texas native was among the favorite’s pre-tournament, and for good reason. He’s a great fit for the course and is extremely familiar with it.
Winning the tournament will be a tough task, but I can see him going low over the weekend to backdoor a high finish.
Mackenzie Hughes (+105) over Seamus Power
This is less of a play on Hughes and more of a play against Power for Round 2.
I mentioned earlier that Hughes had a potentially unsustainable pace with his putter, but his round pales in comparison to what Power did on the greens. The Irishman gained 5.43 strokes, which was more than stroke better than any other player in the field.
What’s even more concerning for Power is that he lost strokes off the tee, on approach and around the green.
Even if the book you use offers someone other than Hughes, I would look to target Power in a matchup with whoever is offered.