PGA Tour Picks: AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am Odds and Predictions
by Alan Matthews - 2/11/2015
I had my eyes on an Australian to win last week's Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, but unfortunately I was pondering Marc Leishman instead of Jason Day. And it was Day, who went off as the 14/1 second-favorite at Bovada, who won the event in a four-man playoff.
Day nearly blew a chance at the playoff when he almost chipped into the water on his 72nd hole, but the ball stopped just short of the yellow hazard line. Day was able to save par and then won the playoff with par on the second extra hole, beating out J.B. Holmes, Harris English and Scott Stallings. The latter two were eliminated on the first playoff hole.
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The victory was the third of Day's career on the PGA Tour -- it really seems like he should have more -- and moved him up to No. 4 in the world, tying his highest ranking. Perhaps more important to Day, he's now the highest-ranked Aussie as Adam Scott dropped to No. 5. Day, who had never been the highest-ranked Aussie, averaged 308.9 yards off the tee at Torrey Pines, the longest in the field.
With all due respect to Day, the big news again was Tiger Woods last week. He withdrew after struggling through 12 holes on Thursday, claiming a back injury. It was the third time in the past nine tournaments he had to withdraw. Woods said his back tightened up after a long fog delay that pushed back the start of his round by more than two hours. Now who knows when Tiger returns, although he was originally scheduled to at the Honda Classic in Florida in a couple of weeks. Woods is down to No. 62 in the world rankings, the lowest he has been ranked since joining the PGA Tour in 1996. Tiger ended 2014 ranked No. 32. Golf is really changing because Phil Mickelson can't play very well these days, either, although he's at least healthy. Lefty missed another cut last week.
While I liked Leishman last week (he was T27), I went with Brandt Snedeker at 25/1 to win. He finished T19. On the Top-10 props, hit on Day at +125 and Jimmy Walker at the same price. Head-to-head, I hit on Walker (-105) over Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler (-115) over Justin Rose, and Chris Kirk (+105) over Dustin Johnson. Spieth, Rose and DJ all missed the cut.
The Tour heads up the California coast to spectacular Pebble Beach for this week's AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. Spyglass Hill and Monterey Peninsula's Shore course also are used in the first three days and then everyone plays Pebble again on Sunday after a 54-hole cut. Only the low 60 and ties play Sunday. Pebble is the shortest of the three and Spyglass has been the hardest in recent years. This is the last tournament of the season that uses multiple courses.
A total of 12 of the world's Top 30 are set to tee it up, led by Day. Also it's our first look at Jim Furyk since the Ryder Cup, and Johnson makes his second straight start since his long layoff/suspension. He has won here twice. Walker is here to defend his 2014 title. He had a six-shot lead at the start of the final round and was still five shots ahead when made the turn. Things got a little dicey, but Walker made a 5-foot par putt on 18 to avoid a playoff with Johnson and Jim Renner. Walker finished at 11-under 277.
Golf Odds: AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am Favorites
Day is the 7/1 favorite at Bovada, and I do think he's going to have a huge year, including winning a major. Just don't ask me which one. Day missed the cut here last year but was sixth the year before and has three Top-15 finishes in six visits.
Tad surprised Walker isn't the favorite, but he's right behind at 8/1. He's your current FedEx Cup leader and hasn't finished worse than seventh (last week) in his previous three PGA Tour events. Walker hasn't finished worse than T9 at Pebble Beach over the last four years and is 44-under in that stretch.
Spieth (11/1), Johnson (14/1) and Patrick Reed (16/1) round out the favorites. Spieth didn't play great last week but tied for fourth at Pebble last year despite a third-round 78. This might be Johnson's favorite course, but he's clearly rusty, and I'm still not ready to back him. Reed didn't play last week. He hasn't finished worse than T13 in two trips here.
Golf Odds: AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am Picks
Bovada is also offering Top-20 finishes this week, but I'll stick with Top 10. Take Day (-150), Walker (-150) and Furyk (+235), who was a Top-10 machine last year. The site also offers three groups of five players where you can take the highest-placed finisher. In the second group, I'll take Hunter Mahan (+300), whose wife just had the couple's second child, over Kirk (+330), Nick Watney (+350), J.B. Holmes (+400) and Kevin Na (+400). I'll take Mahan for a Top 20 as well at even money. He hasn't been worse than T16 here the past four trips here.
Head-to-head, I like Snedeker (+110) over Johnson (-140), Mahan (-115) over Ryan Palmer (-115), Kirk (-110) over Nick Watney (-120), Furyk (-115) over Graham DeLaet (-115) and Billy Horschel (even) over Holmes (-130). I like Shane Lowry at +350 as the top European.
There aren't any long shots I love this week, so I'll cut to the chase: Walker's my guy. So obviously I like him in any head-to-head situations as well.
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Read more articles by Alan Matthews
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