3M Open picks 2022: Why you should believe in Sahith Theegala
We’re not sure why gamblers remember their losses way more clearly than their wins. But it’s true. If you’ve bet Sahith Theegala to win this year, we’d bet you’d remember—especially his three close calls at TPC Scottsdale, TPC River Highlands and the Sanderson Farms.
Notice we mentioned two TPC courses there. Theegala has shown the ability to go low on these TPC courses, and he’ll get another opportunity for his maiden PGA Tour title this week at TPC Twin Cities and the 3M Open.
Two members of our Golf Digest betting panel—our anonymous caddie sending his picks in from Blaine, Minn., this week and Christopher Powers (who hit Cameron Champ at this event last year at 100-1, by the way)—are in the belief that Theegala will build off those near-misses and a strong week at St. Andrews to lift a trophy. They explain why below.
Scroll down to see who we like this week at the 2022 3M Open.
3M Open picks 2022: Our experts' outright selections
Anonymous Caddie Picker of the week: Sahith Theegala (25-1, BetMGM) — This kid is just flat-out good. He contends on all types of courses. And his confidence should be even higher after a really solid week at St. Andrews.
Pat Mayo, DraftKings/Fantasy National, Mayo Media Network analyst: Brendan Steele (35-1, DraftKings) — The best ball-striker in the field over the past three months just needs to string a few putts together this week. That’s been a tough task for him, but he’s done it enough times in his career to have three wins, so at least it’s possible.
Brandon Gdula, FanDuel/numberFire managing editor: Hideki Matsuyama (16-1, FanDuel) — TPC Twin Cities basically boils down to hitting fairways and then hitting greens. Statistically speaking, the greens are easy to putt on, according to datagolf, so that should level the playing field. That’s a Hideki recipe if I’ve ever heard one.
Rick Gehman, data scientist and RickRunGood.com founder: Davis Riley (22-1, DraftKings) — It’s easy to forget about Riley, who hasn’t teed it up since the Travelers Championship. While that time off presents a small concern, his ball-striking numbers are too good to pass up. He’s gained a staggering 39.97 strokes in the ball-striking categories over his last six starts, per the RickRunGood.com golf database. He has six top-15 finishes over his last eight starts and now he’s looking to add a win to the resume.
Stephen Hennessey, Golf Digest dep. managing editor: Cameron Davis (25-1, DraftKings) — Let’s keep the run of Camerons from Australia getting it done. I’ve bet Cam in his past two events (both top-10 results), and it really feels like he’s building toward another victory. He’ll be defending his lone PGA Tour next week at the Rocket Mortgage, and what better way to be riding in with yet another trophy.
Christopher Powers, Golf Digest assistant editor: Sahith Theegala (25-1, BetMGM) — Outside of one off week with his irons in Canada, Theegala has been throwing straight gas for the past month and change. Fifth at Memorial, runner-up at the Travelers, 16th at the John Deere, and a more-than-respectable 34th in his very first Open Championship at St. Andrews. He’s been elite tee-to-green during this stretch, which should serve him well at TPC Twin Cities.
Lee Alldrick, FanShare Sports: Tony Finau (14-1, BetMGM) — Finau comes into this event ranked first in the field for both SG/total over the last two years and the last two months. He also has great form here too, finishing top 30 on all three visits which includes a third-place finish back in 2020.
Past results: Golf Digest's betting panel had another strong season in 2020-’21, correctly predicting 14 winners in the last 28 events of the year. The 2021-’22 season has been kind to us so far, too. Just two weeks ago, two of our experts (Pat Mayo and Lee Aldrick) selected Rory McIlroy at 8-1 to win the RBC Canadian Open. Previously this season, Christopher Powers nailed Scottie Scheffler’s win at the Waste Management Phoenix Open at 29-1 and then backed it up with Joaquin Niemann at 60-1 to win at Riviera. A few weeks before that, Mayo also correctly predicted Luke List’s victory at Torrey Pines at 70-1. Rick Gehman hit Sam Burns (16-1) at the Sanderson Farms Championship in the fall, as well as Viktor Hovland (19-1) at the World Wide Technology Championship at Mayakoba. Brandon Gdula also hit on Hovland at Mayakoba, and Stephen Hennessey cashed on Hideki Matsuyama (12-1) at the Zozo Championship.
Listen to Golf Digest's weekly betting podcast, "Be Right," (below) where we interview the industry's leading experts (and sometimes tour pros) to help you make your bets and pick your fantasy lineups. And be sure to subscribe to "Be Right" wherever you get your podcasts!
3M Open picks 2022: Sleepers/Dark Horses who could win
Caddie: Kevin Chappell (250-1, DraftKings) — Chappy’s been grinding to get his game back. He’s had a few top-25 finishes in his past five starts and hasn’t lost his ability to put up birdies in bunches. The putter can still get super hot, which is key to winning an event like this.
Mayo: Garrick Higgo (100-1, DraftKings) — The chipping has been truly brutal, but an overemphasis on short game this week means you’re simply not making enough birdies. He’s one of a few in the field with elite ball-striking upside who can actually putt.
Gdula: Tom Hoge (70-1, FanDuel) — I know that Hoge has missed a ton of cuts in a row – six, to be exact – but that’s led to a drift in his odds that is unwarranted. Hoge rates out as a premier ball-striker relative to this field and is due for positive putting regression, as well.
Gehman: Michael Gligic (100-1, DraftKings) — When you look at Gligic’s stat profile, he appears “close”. He’s already earned four straight top-40 finishes, highlighted by a T-10 at the John Deere Classic. He’s gained 13.82 strokes putting over his last three measured starts and has gained four-plus strokes from tee-to-green on three different occasions in his last seven starts. When he gets both facets of his game working on the same week, he will make a lot of noise.
Hennessey, Golf Digest: Adam Svensson (45-1, Bet365) — Svensson’s also been trending toward a win, holding the lead for the first two rounds of the Barbasol. He leads this field in Birdies or Better over the past 24 rounds and is sixth in par-4 scoring, both which should put the Canadian in position for his maiden tour victory.
Powers, Golf Digest: Christopher Gotterup (45-1, DraftKings) — The New Jersey native has become quite a controversial topic on golf gambling Twitter this week, mainly for the fact the entire world seems to be betting him or using him in their DFS lineups, thus making him the “square” play. That won’t scare me away. Should he be 100-1 or north of that? Yeah, probably, but he’s a young, up-and-coming player in a weak field who has already made noise on tour this summer. He’s worth a look this week, and you shouldn’t be shamed for thinking that.
Alldrick, FanShare Sports: Adam Svensson (45-1, Bet365) — Svensson comes into this event ranked seventh for SG/total over the last two months. He also ranks highly in the FanShareSports Course Suitability Ranking due to his solid putting on Bentgrass greens.
3M Open picks 2022: Players we're fading
Caddie: Sungjae Im (16-1, DraftKings) — We haven’t seen much from Sungjae lately, so I think there are much better options further down.
Mayo: Cameron Tringale (18-1, DraftKings) — This would be different if it was a top-five fade, but paying a premium on a player who has never won, even in this field, to win, seems strange.
Gdula: Cameron Davis (22-1, FanDuel) — A lot of guys have odds in the 20-1 range, and despite two good finishes here in the past (28th last year and 12th in 2020), he doesn’t really fit the course that well. He rode hot wedges to the finish last year. I’d rather go with a better fit than Davis if in this range.
Gehman: Sungjae Im (16-1, DraftKings) — Im lost an astonishing 10.36 strokes putting at the Open Championship, the worst putting performance of his career by nearly six full strokes. Even if you can look past that, he’s been below tour average with his approach play since the U.S. Open. That’s generally concerning and far from the best version of himself. We’ve seen him slump like this before, and it usually takes a few weeks for him to break out.
Hennessey, Golf Digest: Joohyung Kim (29-1, FanDuel) — My favorite show growing up was Thomas the Tank Engine, so I’m 1,000 percent IN a player with that nickname. That being said, this number is crazy-talk. I cashed a top-five on him at the Scottish, but he was nearly 200-1. I know it’s a bad field, but it ain’t bad enough to bet this.
Powers, Golf Digest: Hideki Matsuyama (16-1, FanDuel) — I don’t like the top of the board usually and I definitely don’t like a 16-1 Matsuyama who has missed the cut and finished outside the top 60 in his last two starts.
Alldrick, FanShare Sports: Hideki Matsuyama (16-1, FanDuel) — Simply put, Matsuyama doesn’t putt well enough on Bentgrass greens to be priced up as an 16-1 shot in this field. He ranks just 134th for SG/putting over the last two years in the field this week, losing 0.5 shots to the field per round.
3M Open picks 2022: Matchups
Caddie: Cameron Tringale (-140) over Joohyung Kim (Caesars) — Both guys are riding hot form, but Tringale just has so much more experience over here in the States. His wedge play is a strength, and I think he’ll ride that hot form over here.
Mayo: Nick Hardy (-110) over Matthew NeSmith (DraftKings) — Ride the consistency of Hardy over the up-and-down nature of NeSmith.
Gdula: Brendon Todd (-110) over Nick Hardy (FanDuel) — TPC Twin Cities sets up well for Todd, whose game is centered on accuracy and putting. Hardy’s trending up, but the long-term advantage belongs to Todd for sure.
Gehman: J.T. Poston (-110) over Martin Laird (DraftKings) — Poston punched his ticket to St. Andrews thanks to his win at the John Deere Classic. He didn’t play poorly last week but missed the cut by a few strokes. Already with three top-10 finishes in his last seven starts, this field and course will be much more suited for Poston’s game. I expect him to bounce back quickly and look to improve on his T-28 from last year.
Hennessey, Golf Digest: Sahith Theegala (+126) over Sungjae Im (FanDuel) — I’m invested in Sahith in the outright market this week, and this matchup is definitely worth taking. Sahith nearly won at two TPC courses this year (Scottsdale and River Highlands) and also boasts strong finishes at other comp courses (Muirfield Village and Colonial). Sungjae’s coming off a nearly DFL finish at St. Andrews.
Powers, Golf Digest: Troy Merritt (-110) over Jason Day (DraftKings) — With Jason Day, it’s just impossible to tell what you’re going to get when he shows up to a tournament. He might shoot 62 on Thursday, or he might WD. Merritt, on the other hand, is as reliable as they come, and after a pair of missed cuts recently he bounced back with a top-30 at the Scottish Open. He’s also got strong history in Minnesota, making two of three cuts with a seventh-place finish in 2019.
Alldrick, FanShare Sports: Adam Svensson (-110) over Nick Hardy (Bet365) — As you can see above, I really like Svensson this week. Hardy on the other hand ranks just 83rd in the field for SG/putting on Bentgrass greens.
Matchup Results from the Open Championship: Caddie: 1 for 1 (Cantlay (+100) over Thomas); Mayo: 1 for 1 (Oosthuizen (-120) over Koepka); Gdula: 1 for 1 (Cantlay (-122) over Morikawa); Hennessey: 1 for 1 (McIlroy (-142) over Rahm); Gehman: 0 for 1; Powers: 0 for 1; Alldrick: 0 for 1
Matchup Results from this season (Wins-Losses-Pushes): Mayo: 25-7-4 (up 16.7 units); Powers: 20-14-4 (up 5.82 units); Caddie: 21-14-3 (up 5.65 units); Alldrick: 21-15-2 (up 3.35 units); Gdula: 18-18-1 (down 1.37 units); Gehman: 15-17-5 (down 3.02 units); Hennessey: 18-19-1 (down 5.54 units)
3M Open picks 2022: Top 10s
Caddie: Davis Riley (+250, DraftKings) — Just a stud who puts up birdies in bunches. I can see him contending yet again.
Mayo: Nick Hardy (+400, DraftKings) — Since returning from his wrist injury, Hardy has been relatively in the mix every week. Finished second on the KFT and has piled up five straight top-35 finishes since.
Gdula: Martin Laird (+450, FanDuel) — The data shows that these are easy greens to putt on, so it’s a solid week to bank on a great tee-to-green golfer who struggles with the putter. That’s Laird’s archetype.
Gehman: Adam Long (+275, DraftKings) — Long has been impressive, earning three straight top-15 finishes with a T-13 at the John Deere Classic in his most recent start. He’s been solid from tee-to-green, gaining strokes six times in his last nine starts. He becomes an even more appealing option when you realize that he finished T-25 at this event last year and runner-up in 2020. Long is playing well and going back to a place where he’s had plenty of success.
Hennessey, Golf Digest: Callum Tarren (+900, Bet365) — Tarren’s last start in the U.S. was a sixth-place at the John Deere (another TPC course). He’s one of the longest hitters in this field and rates out really well in par-4 scoring and comp courses over the past 24 rounds.
Powers, Golf Digest: Brandon Hagy (+1400, DraftKings) — Hagy has had a brutal 2022, but he finally hit the ball well at the Barbasol, gaining over five strokes tee-to-green and over 3.5 on approach en route to just his second top-30 finish in the last calendar year. Perhaps he’s turned a corner, which would be great timing for TPC Twin Cities, where bombers like him have fared well over the last three years.
Alldrick, FanShare Sports: Hank Lebioda (+900, DraftKings) — Lebioda was a very popular pick here last year and was going very well until having to WD due to personal reasons. The two visits before this he played well too, with finishes of 26th and 34th. He comes into this event ranked 30th for SG/total over the last two months and sixth for SG/putting on Bentgrass greens over the last two years.
Top-10 results from the Open Championship: Mayo: 1 for 1 (Jordan Spieth +180); Hennessey: 1 for 1 (Tommy Fleetwood +333); Everybody else: 0 for 1
Top-10 results from this season: Alldrick: 13 for 38 (up 38.5 units); Powers: 12 for 38 (up 30.55 units); Hennessey: 9 for 38 (up 1.95 units); Gehman: 8 for 38 (up 0.7 units); Mayo: 7 for 38 (down 0.4 units); Caddie: 10 for 38 (down 1 unit); Gdula: 5 for 37 (down 12 units)
3M Open picks 2022: One and Done
Gehman: Sahith Theegala — Theegala has gained strokes off-the-tee in five straight, accomplishing that feat for the first time in his young career. That’s providing a solid baseline and allowing him to frequently play out of the correct position. He’s not only made the cut in eight straight events but he has two top-five finishes during that stretch. He’s incredibly talented and still has plenty of upside to display.
Previous weeks: Fortinet Championship: Kevin Na; Sanderson Farms Championship: Mito Pereira. Shriners: Abraham Ancer. CJ Cup: Louis Oosthuizen. Zozo Championship: Hideki Matsuyama. Bermuda Championship: Seamus Power. Mayakoba: Abraham Ancer. Houston Open: Sam Burns. RSM Classic: Scottie Scheffler. Sentry TOC: Sungjae Im. Sony Open: Corey Conners. American Express: Talor Gooch. Farmers Insurance Open: Tony Finau. AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am: Daniel Berger. Waste Management Phoenix Open: Viktor Hovland. Genesis Invitational: Xander Schauffele. Honda Classic: Billy Horschel. Arnold Palmer Invitational: Rory McIlroy. Players Championship: Jon Rahm. Valspar Championship: Dustin Johnson. Valero Texas Open: Charley Hoffman. The Masters: Brooks Koepka. RBC Heritage: Patrick Cantlay. Mexico Open: Aaron Wise. Wells Fargo: Matt Fitzpatrick. AT&T Byron Nelson: Justin Thomas. PGA Championship: Jordan Spieth. Charles Schwab Challenge: Max Homa. The Memorial Tournament: Will Zalatoris. RBC Canadian Open: Cameron Smith. U.S. Open: Collin Morikawa. Travelers Championship: Davis Riley. John Deere Classic: Cam Davis. Scottish Open: Tommy Fleetwood. Open Championship: Tyrrell Hatton.
Hennessey: Sahith Theegala — The near-wins at TPC courses in 2022 have me on him outright, and I’ll have him in a few One and Dones this week, too.
Previous weeks: Fortinet Championship: Emiliano Grillo; Sanderson Farms Championship: Carlos Ortiz. Shriners: Abraham Ancer. CJ Cup: Collin Morikawa. Zozo Championship: Takumi Kanaya. Bermuda Championship: Seamus Power. Mayakoba: Aaron Wise. Houston Open: Sam Burns. RSM Classic: Brendon Todd. Sentry TOC: Xander Schauffele. Sony Open: Marc Leishman. American Express: Sungjae Im. Farmers Insurance Open: Daniel Berger. AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am: Lanto Griffin. Waste Management Phoenix Open: Viktor Hovland. Genesis Invitational: Will Zalatoris. Honda Classic: Russell Knox. Arnold Palmer Invitational: Keith Mitchell. Players Championship: Cameron Smith. Valspar Championship: Shane Lowry. Valero Texas Open: Chris Kirk. The Masters: Justin Thomas. RBC Heritage: Russell Henley. Mexico Open: Gary Woodland. Wells Fargo: Troy Merritt. AT&T Byron Nelson: Jhonattan Vegas. PGA Championship: Scottie Scheffler. Charles Schwab Challenge: Jordan Spieth. The Memorial Tournament: Jon Rahm. RBC Canadian Open: Cameron Smith. U.S. Open: Rory McIlroy. Travelers Championship: Joaquin Niemann. John Deere Classic: Webb Simpson. Scottish Open: Matt Fitzpatrick. Open Championship: Xander Schauffele.
Powers: Maverick McNealy — Consecutive top-20s have made McNealy one of the betting favorites, which, as any McNealy bettor knows, is not the time to bet him. But I would hate to miss out on his first win in some capacity, so this feels like the spot to employ him.
Previous weeks: Fortinet Championship: Brendan Steele. Sanderson Farms Championship: Mito Pereira. Shriners: Aaron Wise. CJ Cup: Talor Gooch. Zozo Championship: Joaquin Niemann. Bermuda Championship: Patrick Rodgers. Mayakoba: Jhonattan Vegas. Houston Open: Marc Leishman. RSM Classic: Corey Conners. Sentry TOC: Daniel Berger. Sony Open: Kevin Na. American Express: Seamus Power. Farmers Insurance Open: Luke List. AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am: Cameron Tringale. Waste Management Phoenix Open: Bubba Watson. Genesis Invitational: Adam Scott. Honda Classic: Billy Horschel. Arnold Palmer Invitational: Chris Kirk. Players Championship: Xander Schauffele. Valspar Championship: Sam Burns. Valero Texas Open: Charley Hoffman. The Masters: Brooks Koepka. RBC Heritage: Matt Fitzpatrick. Mexico Open: Abraham Ancer. Wells Fargo: Keegan Bradley. AT&T Byron Nelson: Sahith Theegala. PGA Championship: Jordan Spieth. Charles Schwab Challenge: Tommy Fleetwood. The Memorial Tournament: Patrick Reed. RBC Canadian Open: Tyrrell Hatton. U.S. Open: Shane Lowry. Travelers Championship: Davis Riley. John Deere Classic: Scott Stallings. Scottish Open: Viktor Hovland. Open Championship: Will Zalatoris.
About our experts
Pat Mayo is an award-winning video host and producer of long- and short-form content, owner of the Mayo Media Network and host of The Pat Mayo Experience. (Subscribe for video or audio.) Mayo (@ThePME) was named 2021 Daily Fantasy Writer of the Year by the Fantasy Sports Writing Association, while also being a finalist for Podcast of the Year and Golf Writer of the Year. Mayo won the 2020 FSWA Daily Fantasy Writer of the Year and Golf Writer of the Year awards, along with the Fantasy Sports Trade Association Best Sports Betting Analyst award in 2020. He was finalist for four FSWA Awards in 2020 (Best Podcast, Best Video, Daily Fantasy Writer of the Year, Golf Writer of the Year). Mayo is on the board of governors at www.fantasynational.com.
Brandon Gdula, managing editor and analyst for NumberFire, a FanDuel daily-fantasy analysis company, recently won the 2018 FSWA Golf Writer of the Year. Gdula also co-hosts the DFS Heat Check podcast.
Rick Gehman is the founder of RickRunGood.com and the RickRunGood YouTube Channel, is one of the industry’s leading experts on golf DFS and gambling. Gehman is co-host of the First Cut Podcast and appears regularly on the Pat Mayo Experience golf podcasts. Follow him on Twitter: @RickRunGood.
Lee Alldrick of FanShare Sports started out writing an article highlighting the best bargain plays for fantasy golf under his twitter handle @DKGolfBargains. His success at this prompted FanShare Sports to enlist him as a guest writer, which evolved into him writing the weekly Under The Radar article. As a U.K.-based expert, Alldrick’s insight into European Tour regulars and low priced, low owned plays has provided an invaluable edge for readers when it comes to DFS GPPs.