The PGA Tour’s new designated event system has delivered so far. We’ve witnessed epic finishes on some of the world’s best golf courses.
Jon Rahm is on a tear and has won five of his last 10 starts, while Rickie Fowler and Jason Day have revitalized their careers. Matthew Fitzpatrick and Will Zalatoris, meanwhile, seem to have pushed past their injury concerns and the Canadians have gotten off to a hot start, too.
We’ll examine all that as we look at the latest golf betting trends as major season quickly approaches.
Golf betting trends
Check out the latest golf betting odds for the PGA Tour, major championships and other global tours.
A historic heater from Jon Rahm
When Rahm took the 18-hole lead at the Arnold Palmer Invitational last Thursday it seemed inevitable that he would cruise to yet another victory.
Well, that didn’t happen. Rahm finally showed signs of being human and failed to break par the next three days en route to a T39 finish.
It was the first time since last July that the Spaniard didn’t crack the top 20 and only the second time in that span he failed to finish inside the top eight (seriously).
He’s been performing at a Tiger-esque level and one poor showing was bound to happen sooner or later.
But is there value in betting on Rahm considering how chalky his odds have — rightfully — become? In this week’s Players Championship, he’s +110 to finish inside the top 10 and +900 to win it all.
If you were to have bet on Rahm to win every single start since the beginning of 2023 you’d be doing just fine.
He won the Sentry Tournament of Champions at +800, the American Express at +600 and the Genesis Invitational at +700. Assuming you’re betting $100 each time, you would be up $1,800 or 18 units.
The question remains: Is this heater sustainable?
We think so. Rahm is clearly the best player in the world and his +2.528 strokes gained: total is nearly half a shot higher than the next closest player (Max Homa, +2.179).
There are no flaws in Rahm’s game outside of a wayward drive left every now and then.
With major season around the corner, we’re about to see if Rahm can turn a great season into a historic one.
A new Day and Rickie’s revival
If you wound back the clock about eight years, Day and Fowler were two of the biggest names in golf.
The duo have a combined 17 PGA Tour wins and 28 top-10 finishes at the majors. Both ranked within the OWGR’s top five at some point in their careers with Day holding the No. 1 spot for 51 weeks:
|PGA Tour wins
|Top 10s at majors
|Highest OWGR rank
|Last PGA Tour win
But things were looking grim for the former stars last season.
Day had managed just two top-10 finishes with one being at the Zurich Classic (a team event). Fowler was even worse — he had only finished inside the top 20 once and missed nine of 22 cuts.
It was clear something needed to change quickly and thankfully for them, it did. Fowler re-imagined his swing and Day finally pushed through a chronic back injury to regain top form. Both are on fire right now.
Day has been particularly impressive lately. He’s carded four straight top-10 finishes on the back of a rock-solid short game. The Australian ranks second in scrambling this season (70.56%) and 14th in strokes gained: putting (+0.698).
It seems like this run is sustainable, so betting on Day to find the winner’s circle in the coming months could be profitable. That said, he’s been a top-20 machine this season (eight of 11 starts) and that’s a safer play.
Fowler’s been slightly more volatile than Day but has still impressed. The 34-year-old has made all but one cut this season and has five top-20 finishes in his nine starts.
We wouldn’t hold our breath on Fowler winning a marquee event but if he’s playing in a weaker field, that could present solid value.
If you’re trying to pick which Canadian will show up on any given week — good luck. That said, there have been a series of solid finishes from the boys north of the border this season.
Nick Taylor went punch for punch with Scottie Scheffler at the WM Phoenix Open only to finish runner-up. Don’t feel too bad for him, though, that purse was still worth $2.18 million.
That was Taylor’s third top-10 of the season, but he’s also missed four cuts.
If we’re talking consistency, Corey Conners is the guy. The Listowel, Ontario, native has six top-25 finishes in nine starts. If you’ve been betting on him to finish inside the top 30, that’s been a profitable venture.
He’s +110 to do that this week at the Players and has finished inside the top 30 in each of his last two starts at TPC Sawgrass.
Taylor Pendrith finished seventh at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, Adam Hadwin was T10 in Phoenix and Adam Svensson carded a T9 at the Genesis.
The Canadians are bucking their heads early and that should translate to a win sooner or later.
The injury bug
Zalatoris and Fitzpatrick will forever be intertwined for their Sunday dual at the Country Club in last year’s U.S. Open.
Fitzpatrick took the title home but Zalatoris ended up securing his first PGA Tour win a few months later at the FedEx St. Jude Championship. The following week he suffered a back injury that sidelined him for nearly five months.
He returned to action at the Sentry Tournament of Champions but was clearly not himself. While Zalatoris was trying to get his swagger back, Fitzpatrick was also dealing with a neck injury of his own.
But it’s looking like the skies are clearing for each player.
Fitzpatrick finished T14 at the API last week and posted positive strokes gained: approach for the first time since January. Zalatoris, meanwhile, had a solo fourth-place finish at the Genesis in February.
These are two world-class talents that can compete at the highest level. It looks like they’ve gotten healthy, making it a good time to grab them with inflated odds.
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