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Pebble Beach Pro-Am: Best Bets and Course Info

Is this LIV Golf or the PGA Tour? The AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am will be a no-cut, 80-man field for the first time in its legendary and lengthy history on the PGA Tour. While it is technically the second signature event of the season, the Sentry has always had a small-field, no-cut dynamic. So this is truly the first real feel for how the PGA has restructured the season, opting for 8 signature events to host 80 of the Tour’s best for 4 rounds.

Not only does the elevation of the tournament affect the cut, but it also changes the course rotation we will see. Historically, the Pebble Beach Pro-Am has had a structure very similar to the American Express Pro-Am. There, we saw a 3 course rotation that resulted in a Saturday cut. This year, Monterey Peninsula CC has been dropped from the event altogether. Now, golfers will have 3 rounds at Pebble Beach, and 1 round on either Thursday or Friday at Spyglass Hill. The Pro-Am will also come to a close on Friday, leaving golfers independent to focus on their weekend finish. Let’s take a closer look at the short, yet challenging, courses the golfers will face.

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Course Info: Pebble Beach Golf Links

I won’t be going too in depth for Spyglass Hill, as these golfers will only play there once and there will be no ShotLink tracing or Strokes Gained data. However, I will say Spyglass Hill will most likely be the tougher of the 2 courses. It’s still fairly short, but is the longer of the 2. It also has more challenging tee shots, with narrower fairways. Other than 3 of the 4 Par 5s, most will be happy with pars. The scoring will come at Pebble.

I say that, but Pebble Beach is still a very challenging course. For a Par 72 coming in around 7,000 yards, you would expect scoring to be very low. This is almost never the case at Pebble Beach. Extreme tee shots make the short distances very misconstruing. All golfers will be forced to lay up on many holes. There’s a reason Pebble Beach averages the shortest driving distance on Tour, coming in at 270 yards. Once in the fairway, golfers will face some of the smallest green complexes this year. Approach play will be of the utmost importance this weekend. Difficult greens are Pebble’s most underrated challenge. Putting is very difficult, and paired with the smaller greens, scrambling will be where winners are made.

Best Bets: AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am

Justin Thomas (+2500)

As far as I’m concerned, Justin Thomas is still a Top 10 golfer in the world. I know how his 2023 went, and that’s inexcusable. However, I can confirm that JT is fully back.

Following last season’s disappointing conclusion, he has fired off 4 straight Top 5 finishes to start anew. His putting, which has been a struggle his entire career, has been red hot. His around-the-green play is even better. But what makes Justin Thomas world-class is his approach play. When he was struggling last year, his irons were dead. For season after season, Thomas had been one of the absolute best ball-strikers in the world. He’s now gained 5 strokes in back-to-back events. Officially back.

Driving accuracy can be an issue for JT, but with him most likely opting for shorter clubs on most tees, I believe this struggle will be lessened. It’s shocking to me that books are still disrespecting Thomas’ game with these odds. Had he continued his elite play last season, he would be right up there with Rory and Scheffler, landing somewhere around 10/1. It will not be long before Justin Thomas wins again, and his odds will not be this high for a long time. Cash in at 25/1 while you can!

Adam Scott (+6500)

I guess I have a thing for former elites coming back into form. Adam Scott has not won in 4 years, but he has been inching back towards the winner’s circle. Similar to Justin Thomas, Adam Scott comes in to Pebble Beach with 4 consecutive Top 7 finishes. If you don’t include weak Australian events, this is the first time he’s done this. For a Top 50 player of all time, this is significant.

Scott has never found success here, but he’s also only played 3 times. In his 4 rounds at Pebble Beach Golf Links, he averages 1.6 strokes gained approaching the green. His short game has shown to be shaky, but his recent form could not be better. Like JT, using clubs less than driver should elevate Scott’s play. Easy layups in the fairway will give him plenty of looks with a wedge in hand, his best club.

For an 80-man field, I think 65/1 is a very fair price for Adam Scott. The 43-year-old has some gas left in the tank, enough to grab another win. If he can find success with the putter, Adam Scott definitely has a chance to take home the crown.

Andrew Putnam (+11000, +800 Top 10)

2024 has only seen longshot winners, so why not another one?? Andrew Putnam fits the course perfectly, and if he’s going to win anywhere, I believe Pebble Beach is the perfect place for success.

Putnam’s approach play is at an all-time high. 2023 has by far his best season, and 2024 could be even better. In previous years, Putnam’s short game was the only reason he didn’t lose Tour status. His ball-striking has absolutely atrocious. Having done a complete 180, Putnam finished 25th last season in Strokes Gained: Approach, including gaining in 9 consecutive events to close out 2023. He is also extremely accurate off the tee, but usually loses strokes to the field because of what he lacks in distance. Pebble Beach will even the playing field when it comes to distance, so it will set Putnam up perfectly.

Andrew Putnam has found moderate success in this event, including a T6 in 2022, solely due to short-game success. Now that his ball striking is at a career-best, he will no longer have to rely on his putter to save him from the cut. It can win him the tournament. I fully expect Andrew Putnam to be towards the top of the leaderboard on Sunday. I believe both a Top 10 and a Win bet is worth it this week.

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