PGA Picks For This Week – McIlroy Has the Numbers But Doesn’t Pass the Eye Test

The WGC Mexico Championship returns to Club De Golf Chapultepec.

PGA Odds for WGC Mexico are from UniBet Sportsbook. Click for $20 Free Bets in New Jersey or Pennsylvania.

The PGA Tour is in Puerto Rico this week, but all of the best players in the world are playing at the WGC Championship in Mexico City. This WGC event is 72 holes with no cut, which is important to know for betting matchups and golf fantasy games.

Golf Picks – WGC Mexico Championship

Head to Head Matchups

  • Ambraham Ancer vs Marc Leishman: Am I a sucker to go with the home cooking and take Ancer at +100? Leishman (-110) is a 40-1 shot to win. Ancer has 50-1 odds to win the tournament. They have been equally good in 2020 so far. Leish won the Farmers. Ancer was second at the AmEx. Both made the cut and tied for 43rd at the Genesis. Ancer has improved each year at the WGC Mexico, while Leishman struggled in 2019. He was especially bad with his short game at Club De Golf. He lost 9.3 shots putting to the field and 3 shots around the greens. Aside from the win at Torrey Pines, Leishman has putted poorly all 2020. So, I’ll take Ancer head to head vs Leishman for an even money payout at UniBet PA Sportsbook.
  • Victor Perez vs Tyrrell Hatton: Perez has quietly moved up to the 38th ranked player in the world. He has been hot on the European Tour since the Fall of 2019. His play in 2020 has been exceptional including a T2 in a strong field at the HSBC Championship in Abu Dhabi. Hatton has not played on either tour since November of 2019 when he won the Turkish Airlines Open. A source on the ground at Club De Golf tells me that the wrist injury that has kept him out is still a problem for Hatton, and the UniBet Odds indicate the same. With good course history, he should be the favorite vs Perez who has not played this unique setup. Let’s go with what the betting odds are suggesting and take Victor Perez to finish better than Tyrrell Hatton. This is a -110 payout at UniBet Sportsbook.
  • Paul Casey vs Matt Kuchar: Does taking Casey in this matchup at the WGX Mexico even require an explanation? If you watched Kuchar at the Genesis, you know he was not as good as the score indicated. He simply made a lot of putts at the beginning of the tournament. The long hitters blew it by Kuchar on Sunday. Yes, Kuchar has won in Mexico before at Mayakoba. That was on the other side of the country at the beach in a weaker field. Paul Casey has played very good golf despite putting woes that have kept him from a top ten finish so far this year. All you have to do is look the disparity in history at this event to know that Casey has the fire power to potentially win it, and Kuchar would likely not make the cut if there was one at WGC Mexico. I’m taking Paul Casey (-106) head to head vs Kuchar.

WGC Mexico Championship Picks -Top Finishers

  • Dustin Johnson Top 5 (+175). How this can the payout be this high considering he has won this thing twice, easily. DJ can play poorly, as he has been, and still finish in the top 5 at this one just based on his raw golf talent. Anything above +140 feels like a good number for a Dustin Johnson Top 5.
  • Sergio Garcia Top 10 (+400). Sergio is a 40 to 1 shot to win this event. That seems like a generous number considering that Garcia has T12 in 2017, T7 in 2018 and T6 in 2019 finishes at WGC Mexico. The course and the atmosphere bring out the best in Sergio, even when he plays mediocre everywhere else. Last week at the Genesis he gained strokes in every important category except putting on the way to a 37th place finish.
  • Rafa Cabrera-Bello Top 10 (+550). Rafa was outstanding last week, gaining strokes on the field in every key stat except approach. His history at WGC events is even better with a lot of top 20 finishes and a 3rd place finish at WGC Mexico in 2018. The Spaniard is coming into Club De Golf warmed up and ready for a run at a WGC. Will he win? No way. Can he finish in the top ten? Absolutely and +550 is good value for that. Ill back that bet up with a top 20 for Rafa at +225.

WGC Mexico Championship Picks – Who Could Win?

It is obvious why Rory and DJ are the prohibitive favorites at this event, but the odds are strictly that. Prohibitive. I have a policy about never betting on Rory just based on the eye test. Even though he has the ability to run away with this particular event, he does not seem motivated by bad days like he had at Riviera. Dustin does seem hungry to move back up to number one in the World Golf Ranking, and he obviously loves the setup in Mexico City. But if you watched him last week you know his formerly great short irons are a mess and his putting is streaky. It’s just not a smart bet to back either at these prices, even though one of them is likely to win

So, who is a good value to win in this field if it’s not Dustin or Rory?

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Low Odds Player who could win at WGC Mexico

Justin Thomas played bad enough last week to finally present a decent value as a potential winner. He has been a top ten finisher every year at this event and shook off a poor start last year with a 62 on Sunday to finish T9 at WGC Mexico. He had two extra days to rest and travel while the other top players fought it out on a course at Riviera that become grueling on the weekend. I’ll take Justin Thomas to win at +900. I’ll back that bet up with equal bets on his Top 5 at +200 and Top 10 -110 at UniBet Sportsbook.

Medium Odds Player who could win at WGC Mexico

I think at +2000 Tommy Fleetwood has a real chance to claim his first victory at a WGC event. He’s been stacking up big checks abroad recently. In fact he has a win, two 2nd place finishes and a T11 in his last four European Tour starts. He has been off since firing 63 on Sunday at the HSBC Championship at the end of January. So he has had time to prepare, but not enough time to get rusty. Fleetwood showed what he has the ability to do to this course, including his 65 with back to back eagles in round 2 last year. With some of the other players not playing their best right now, I’ll have Tommy Fleetwood on my card as a potential winner at +2000.

Long Odds Player who could win at WGC Mexico

Graeme McDowell is a long shot at 100-1 odds this week. It’s just not a big enough number to think he doesn’t have a chance to win. G-Mac missed the cut at AT&T, his last start. However that was the week after his win in Saudi Arabia. Previously he has finishes of 4th at the Sony and 23rd at the Tournament of Champions. McDowell hasn’t appeared at a WGC since 2016, but he has multiple top-tens in this format.

We know he can play great in a strong field. Plus over the last 24 rounds he ranks 3rd in par fours over 500 yards, a key stat this week. He also has good numbers on long par threes of which there are two at Club De Golf. If DJ or Rory don’t take this thing and run with it, a player of McDowells pedigree could win it. I’ll have a bet on Graeme McDowell to win at +10000 ($10 to win $1000). I’ll also invest in a top-20 finish for G-Mac at +300.

Who to fade as a top finisher at WGC Mexico?

I’m staying away form a few players this week.

First, Rory is a terrible value despite what we know he is capable of. +550 to win ? +125 for a top 5? No thanks.

Then, Adam Scott is another fade, having only played here in 2017 (T45). He had problems off the tee then, and it’s not like he blew away the field at Riviera.

Finally, my third fade is Bryson Dechambeau. The same anonymous source in Mexico City this week says that Bryson might have stomach issues. Was the ‘rocket scientist’ of golf dumb enough to drink the water? Much was made of his ability to calculate the elevation last year. Then he finished T56 losing tons of shots with his short game. The new bigger Bryson muscles won’t help with that, and they can’t do anything about Montezumas Revenge if that is true.

WGC Mexico – Stats That Matter

WGC Mexico Key Stats
Par 4 Efficiency – 11 players who finished inside the top 10 (including ties) ranked inside the top ten in strokes gained on Par 4s. There are 4 long par fours over 450 yards on the course. Three of those are over 500 yards. So driving distance and long approach game matters. The first hole, a 319 par 4 is reachable with driver for many of the players, especially considering the altitude. Rory eagled it in round 1 last year with a long iron off the tee to 6 feet. So, while most players can get there, not many can do it without driver in their hand.
Proximity – 6 of the players who finished inside the top 10 (including ties) ranked inside the top ten in proximity to the hole in 2019.
Strokes Gained Putting – 13 top ten finishers (including ties) in the event also were top 10 finishers in strokes gained putting.
Driving – Hitting fairways has never mattered much at this event. Phil Mickelson won the WGC Mexico in 2018 while finishing -4.8 vs the field on fairways gained. DJ also was in the middle of the pack in this stat last year. Driving Distance matters more. 4 top ten finishers in 2019 (Rory, DJ, JT and Cantlay) also were in the top ten in driving distance last year. The winner has finished top ten in driving distance 2/3 years. Dustin was top 15 in driving distance for his win in 2017, as he needed to rely less on his driver than other players.

My PGA Picks From Last Week

Here are how my PGA betting picks did last week at the Genesis Invitational. If you bet $10 on each of these picks, you would have won approximately $87 dollars.

  • Bubba Watson Top 10: Lost
  • Tony Finau Top 10: Lost
  • Patrick Rodgers Top 10: Lost
  • Patrick Reed Top 5: Lost
  • Sung Kang Top 10 – Won at +1400.
  • Patrick Cantlay to beat Tiger Woods Head to Head – Won at -110
  • Vaughn Taylor to beat Jhonattan Vegas Head to Head – Won at -125
  • Bubba Watson to beat Jason Day Head to Head – Push
  • Cam Smith to Win: Lost
  • Carlos Ortiz to WIn: Lost
  • Bubba Watson to Win: Lost

WGC Mexico 2019 – FAQ

Where is the WGX Mexico Championship held?

The World Golf Championship Event takes place at Club De Golf Chapultepec in Mexico City, Mexico.

Is there a cut at the WGC Mexico?

No. It is a 72 hole stroke play tournament with no cut. A tie at the top of the leaderboard after 72 holes results in a sudden death playoff until there is a winner.

Who won the WGC Mexico last year?

Dustin Johnson won the WGC Mexico Championship in 2019. He finished 5 shots better than Rory McIlroy.

Who won the WGC Mexico in 2018?

It was Phil Mickelson who won the WGC Mexico in 2018. It took a playoff against Justin Thomas to get the job done.

Is Tiger Woods playing this week?

No. Tiger Woods is not in the field at WGC Mexico.

Where is the PGA tour this week?

The regular PGA tour stop is at the Puerto Rico Open. However all of the worlds top players will be at the WGC Mexico.

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