This article is part of our Golf Picks series.
Presidents Cup Betting Preview
Team play takes center stage this week as the Presidents Cup returns to the spotlight with the United States taking on the International Team.
This year's event will be held at Quail Hollow Golf Club in Charlotte, North Carolina, which hosted the 2017 PGA Championship and regularly hosts the Wells Fargo Championship. The Presidents Cup was last played in 2019 and has been dominated by Team USA, which boasts an 11-1-1 all-time record. The oddsmakers have the U.S. as a heavy favorite at -700, while the Internationals are +700 and a draw is +1600.
If you're new to the event, note that the International Team consists of players outside of the USA and Europe. The format is slightly different from the Ryder Cup in that the Presidents Cup is played over four days rather than three, with five four-ball (best ball) matches Thursday and five foursome matches (alternate shot) Friday. Things then switch back to the Ryder Cup format over the weekend with a morning and afternoon session Saturday, starting with four matches of four-ball and ending with four matches of foursomes. The tournament culminates with all 12 players on both teams facing off Sunday in singles matches.
Quail Hollow is a long course, playing as a par-71 at approximately 7,600 yards. That length will certainly fit the Americans. There aren't many golfers with several rounds under their belts at the course, but Justin Thomas has had the most success, gaining 1.76 strokes total per round over his last 14 rounds at the course. Hideki Matsuyama also has an affinity for the course, having made the cut in all six trips to Quail Hollow and posting a T5 at the 2017 PGA Championship. Max Homa is the only other winner at the venue among this week's participants, and he comes in hot after winning last week's Fortinet Championship.
Ultimately, I expect the USA to come out victorious yet again, but I don't see much value in their odds.
Presidents Cup Picks: Top Team USA Point Scorer
Scottie Scheffler (+550)
Maybe this is not the most outside-the-box pick, but Scheffler is likely to play every match, and this isn't where you want to go with a long shot because the margin for error is so thin for those playing one or even two fewer matches. Scheffler is a Presidents Cup rookie, but he played well in the Ryder Cup last year and his length off the tee and strong all-around game make him a great fit for the course and every format.
Presidents Cup Picks: Top USA Captains Pick Point Scorer
Jordan Spieth (+330)
Spieth should play at least four of the five possible matches and will likely pair up with Justin Thomas, who is 6-2-2 in Presidents Cup play and has the course history noted above. He's coming off a better season than people give him credit for, as he finished 18th in Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green. Hopefully the team format will help him move past his putting woes.
Presidents Cup Picks: Top International Captains Pick Point Scorer
K.H. Lee (+550)
In a recent trip to Quail Hollow, Lee was reported to have been the most dominant International Team member. He made the cut in both of his previous trips to Charlotte, although he was never in contention. I think there's good value here, as Lee shouldn't be the longest shot in this category.
Presidents Cup Picks: Top Rookie Scorer
Tom Kim (+1200)
Despite being just 20 years old, Kim's Official World Golf Ranking is third best on the team. Outside of Sungjae Im, Kim is playing the best of anyone on the International squad. While he's not an ideal fit for Quail Hollow with more of a precision game off the tee, he has talked about ramping up his ball speed when needed and he gained a whopping 0.73 shots on approach per round -- the sixth best mark out there -- last season.