In 2022, Jon Rahm came into the Mexico Open at Vidanta as a +500 favorite despite not having won an event all year. He emerged as the winner for his only victory in the 2021-22 PGA Tour season. Here the 2023 Mexico Open betting preview!
Going into this year’s tournament, Rahm has won four times—including capturing the green jacket at the Masters earlier this month—and as a result, the Spaniard is the biggest tournament favorite in a decade.
Rahm’s odds of winning sit at +275. The last time a player had odds less than 3-to-1 to win was Tiger Woods at the 2013 Arnold Palmer Invitational. That event ended up with Woods winning his eighth tournament at Bay Hill, cashing in on the low odds.
The tournament dates back to 1944 but only became a PGA Tour event last year. Rahm will be looking to join fellow two-time winners of this event like Lee Trevino and Stewart Cink.
This will be the second year that this tournament will take place at Vidanta Vallarta on the Mexican Pacific coast. The course is a Greg Norman design that’s a par 71, featuring five par-3 holes and four par 5s. The rough has been grown out an extra half of an inch from last year’s tournament, and the greens presented challenges to players last year—the percentages of conversions made from inside 10 feet was 11th lowest on tour last season.
While it’s not quite that extreme, Jon Rahm is the heavy, heavy favorite here. After shooting a 17-under last year to win by a stroke over Tony Finau, Brandon Wu, and Kurt Kitayama, Rahm could go far lower given how well he’s played. Among Rahm’s accomplishments this year, he ranks first on the PGA Tour in par-3 scoring, so the extra short hole on this course plays to that strength. But Rahm doesn’t have a weakness on any type of hole—he’s second in par-5 scoring and tied for third in par-4 scoring.
Playing just one week after running away with the Masters title after a dominant final round, Rahm didn’t suffer much of a letdown with a 15th-place finish at the RBC Heritage. He took last week off and comes into this one rested and ready to go. Rahm hasn’t successfully defended a title in his PGA Tour career, but he has already won four times in 2023 and goes up against the weakest field he’s been a part of this year.
If Rahm will be challenged, it will likely be at the hands of Tony Finau, who was a runner-up to Rahm last year and is the second-highest-rated golfer in the field, sitting in 11th in FedEx Cup points. Finau’s runner-up last year was his first top-five of 2022 but kicked off a hot streak that saw him come in the top five in six of 11 events, including two wins. He finished 2022 with a win in the Houston Open (which counts towards the 2022-23 season), but he’s flown under the radar a bit in 2023. That doesn’t mean he’s played poor golf: he hasn’t missed a cut all year and his worst finish is 31st, which was two weeks ago at Hilton Head.
Finau tends to heat up with the weather, and coming off a second-place effort here a year ago, expect him to keep up with Rahm this weekend.
After Rahm and Finau, the next golfer in the FedEx Cup standings is Wyndham Clark at 40th. Clark comes in with three top-six finishes in his last four starts and went into the final round of the Zurich Classic in the lead with partner Beau Hossler (+3500) before settling for a third-place finish.
Clark started here last year with a 68 but shot over par in the final three rounds for a 67th-place effort, but he comes into Vidanta this time in much better form than a year ago. As for Hossler, last week was his third made cut in a row and sixth top-25 of the year, but outside of the Zurich, he hasn’t kicked it up to that next level so far this season.
Can put together some stellar rounds, making him a good choice for this week. His runner-up at the Puntacana Championship at Corales was his fourth top-15 finish of the season when you include his DP World Tour efforts. He wasn’t remarkable in finishing 32nd last week with partner Thorbjorn Olesen, but the native of Denmark is in good form.
Was tied for fifth at the Valero Texas Open and followed it up with a top 20 at Harbour Town. He was also 10th here last year, finishing just four shots behind Rahm on a crowded leaderboard, posting three sub-70 rounds over the course of his 72 holes.
Posted a career-best runner-up finish here last year as part of his rookie season, charging up the leaderboard with a 63 on the final day. This year, Wu also has a runner-up at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, where he beat Rahm but lost to Justin Rose. He also fared well with a 19th at The Players Championship.
Hadn’t performed well at all since winning the Barracuda Championship last summer, but he’s showing signs of life as of late. After missing six cuts in a row, Reavie placed sixth at the Valero Texas Open and was 11th against a strong field at the RBC Heritage. He also tied for 13th here with two 67s among his work here last year.
There is very little value in Rahm, but it’s impossible not to play him this week. Finau is also showing all the signs of returning to his winning ways. We would be very surprised to see one of those two not win, but if you want a couple other picks, go with Clark, Wu, and Reavie.
|GOLFERS||ODDS TO WIN 2023 MEXICO OPEN AT VIDANTA|
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