2020 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open: Outright & Matchup Bets for Round 2

2020 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open: Outright & Matchup Bets for Round 2 article feature image
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Matthew Stockman/Getty Images. Pictured: Sergio Garcia.

Hope you backed the favorites this week.

It shouldn’t come as a total surprise, but through one round of the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, the players who were first and third, respectively, on the pre-tournament oddsboard are running 1-2 on the leaderboard.

If you have utmost confidence in Bryson DeChambeau (+200) or Patrick Cantlay (+450), a pair of past champions at this event, you’ll have to pay up for ‘em.

If you don’t, well, there are plenty of other big numbers still out there, with nobody else in the field lower than +2200.

Me? If I’ve absolutely gotta take someone right now, I’ll clench my teeth (among other things) and go with the bigger price on Cantlay over DeChambeau. The 2017 champion also owns a pair of runner-up finishes in his three starts at TPC Summerlin and he’s now a total of 60-under in 13 career rounds.

Perhaps just as (if not more) importantly, he’ll be playing in Friday’s early wave, while Bryson will play in the afternoon — and the morning guys were nearly a full stroke lower in the opening frame.

And then there’s the fact that winds are forecasted to be 20+ mph throughout this weekend and I just don’t trust Bryson’s booming drives to find their intended targets as much with that type of breeze.

Don’t get me wrong: That doesn’t mean I’m just blindly fading Bryson, I’d just rather have Cantlay’s number than his. Since I don’t “absolutely gotta” take someone, I’d just as soon sit on my hands here until the picture becomes a bit clearer. Or even better, much more muddied.

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Round 2 Matchups

Sergio Garcia (+106) over Hideki Matsuyama

OK, I’m sold. It took me a while, but I’m a believer in Sergio once again. Whatever motivation he received before winning last week’s Sanderson Farms, it’s carried over to this one, with an opening-round 5-under 66. On SiriusXM PGA Tour the other day, John Maginnes told me that he was one of only a handful of people who walked with Garcia during his third round last week — and at age 40, he’s somehow gained 20-30 yards from last season. That’s a nice combination of mental and physical, and while I don’t love fading Hideki, that plus-money is the play here.

Sepp Straka (+102) over Emiliano Grillo

We’ve seen that Straka is a guy who can get it rolling when he has some momentum, especially on a course yielding plenty of birdies, like this one. It’s easy to see him matching his opening 6-under 65, even while playing in potentially tougher conditions Friday afternoon. Meanwhile, Grillo has struggled in second rounds, his worst day statistically over the past year. Plus, he was +2.21 strokes gained putting on Thursday, which shouldn’t be sustainable for a notoriously iffy putter like him.

Cameron Champ (+122) over Matthew Wolff

Just a few weeks removed from his runner-up finish at the U.S. Open, Wolff was a trendy pick prior to this one. In fact, Jeff Sherman of SuperBookUSA told me they’d received a $2,000 bet on Wolff pre-tourney at 25/1 odds. His opening 3-under 68 probably isn’t what that bettor had in mind. Champ was one stroke lower and his stats suggest he played even better than that. If he can turn around a -1.55 strokes gained putting number, Champ is certainly capable of putting together a really low one.

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