Arnold Palmer Invitational
Thursday, March 7, 2019 at 1:00 PM (Bay Hill Club and Lodge)
We continue our Florida swing with a stop at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, a field that will include 123 players and is one of five inventional events on the tour. Last week wasn’t so great, but two of our five golfers did finish in the top-25, which includes a top-10 showing from Sergio Garcia, who had +2000 odds to win the event. We’ve produced a winner three of the last five weeks.
Here are five golfers to consider throwing on your card this week.
Rory McIlroy, +700 - Rory McIlroy said her 100 percent committed to the PGA Tour this year, and it’s paying off so far with top-five finishes in four straight events, including a runner-up spot in Mexico. McIlroy won this event last year and is averaging a finish of 10.75 in four appearances overall. McIlroy is the favorite to win this event with these odds, but you still have to like your chances of making seven times your money given his current form.
Zach Johnson, +9000 - Zach Johnson enters this week in horrible form, which is why these odds are what they are. Still, it wasn’t that long ago when Johnson was a lock to be a top-20 finisher and was pushing the leaderboard. This is a good week to get back on track, as Johnson has made the cut in 14 of his 15 appearances at the Bay Hill Club and Lodge, and that includes five top-10 finishes. Johnson is undervalued this week, making these odds worth some money.
Marc Leishman, +2800 - Marc Leishman was god awful last the last time we saw him in Mexico, but he’s still somebody who has finished in the top-five in five of his last eight events, which includes a win at the CIMB Classic. Leishman finished seventh in this event last year and won it in 2017. Overall, Leishman has finished 17th or better in four of his last eight appearances at the Bay Hill Club and Lodge. You can argue Leishman should be listed as a top-five contender this week, and these odds put him just outside that range.
Henrik Stenson, +5500 - Henrik Stenson has missed the cut in three of his last four events and wasn’t good in Mexico. In other words, Stenson hasn’t looked good since Dubai back in November, and he’s missed the cut in four of his last nine events overall. The good news is Stenson gets some homecoming this week given that he’s from Orlando, and he’s finished 15th or better in six of last seven appearances at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. Stenson was runner-up here in 2015, losing to Matt Every by one stroke. If there’s one course that can end this drought for Stenson, it’s this one.
Michael Thompson, +7500 - Michael Thompson has only played this event once, which was a 36th place finish in 2012. Still, if you’re looking for a dark horse, Thompson is worth a look based on the fact he’s finished no worse than 16th in each of his last five events. Thompson is a -20 to par in his last three tournaments combined, and he’s 18th in scoring average as well as 39th in driving accuracy percentage. Thompson is playing too well at the moment to be given these massive odds.