News & Opinion

2021 Arnold Palmer Invitational: Latest betting odds, favorites and sleeper picks for Bay Hill Club and Lodge

Francesco Molinari loves Bay Hill, and his recent form should put him into contention this week.

Rory McIlroy rates an 8-1 pick to win 'The Arnie,' but Patrick Reed (20-1) and Francesco Molinari (30-1) offer more bang for your buck

When the first World Golf Championships event of the year comes around, it signals an early chance to make a big statement among the game’s elite.

While the PGA Tour's “B listers” were playing last week in Puerto Rico, the “A listers” battled it out in Bradenton, Fla., at the WGC Workday for a larger purse and more world-ranking points.

Going into the week, few observers would have expected Collin Morikawa to make such a declaration of intent, considering his recent form, but he showed everyone why he’s going to be around for a while, and it’s largely because of his strong mental game.

As for the picks, we had another solid week, with our long-shot Louis Oosthuizen claiming a T-6 finish, and our favorite, Tony Finau, finishing 14th. Joaquin Niemann put up a pedestrian effort to finish T-28.

We now head to the late Arnold Palmer's place in Orlando for the Arnold Palmer Invitational and what traditionally has been the start of the “Florida Swing.” At Bay Hill Club and Lodge, the outcome often comes down to conditions. When Jason Day (2016) and Rory McIlroy (2018) won at Bay Hill, the weather was calm and they nearly reached 20 under. Last year’s champion, Tyrrell Hatton, won with a 4-under total in tougher conditions. With his victory, Hatton, of England, extended the recent streak of five consecutive non-American winners at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

According to William Hill, McIlroy is the favorite at 8-1 after a solid T-6 last week at Concession. Next up is arguably the hottest player in the world in Viktor Hovland, with yet another top-five performance last week, and Bryson DeChambeau, both at 12-1. Hatton was listed at 16-1. Farmers Insurance Open champion Patrick Reed and the durable Sungjae Im close out the favorites, at 20-1.

For our favorite, we are going with the value play in Reed, at 20-1. His personality aside, Reed cashes tickets more often than not. In his first PGA Tour start since winning at Torrey Pines, he finished ninth against an elite field last week. In his five appearances at Bay Hill, Reed has finished twice in the top 20. He ranks second on the Tour in birdies, so if the conditions are calm, look for Reed to take advantage.

For a high midrange pick, 2019 champion Francesco Molinari looks to be the play here at 30-1. With recent form picking up, marked by three top-10 finishes in his past four starts, Molinari seems primed to take advantage of a course that he loves. In his seven starts at Bay Hill, he holds four top-10s and has made the cut each time. The non-American trend could continue with Molinari this week.

We’ll complement the high midrange pick with a deep sleeper in Sweden’s Alex Noren, at 90-1. He posted a solid 12th-place performance at Riviera two weeks ago, and he should be capable to roll it into this week. The 38-year-old Swede, a 10-time winner on the European Tour, could be ready to win in the U.S.

2021 picks scoreboard:

Winners: 1
Top 10s: 5
Top 20s: 6
Misses: 11

Here are some notable odds, according to William Hill:

Rory McIlroy 8-1
Bryson DeChambeau 12-1
Viktor Hovland 12-1
Tyrrell Hatton 16-1
Patrick Reed 20-1
Sungjae Im 20-1
Matthew Fitzpatrick 25-1
Paul Casey 28-1
Hideki Matsuyama 28-1
Jordan Spieth 30-1
Francesco Molinari 30-1
Louis Oosthuizen 33-1
Jason Day 33-1
Billy Horschel 33-1
Tommy Fleetwood 35-1
Marc Leishman 40-1
Sam Burns 40-1
Jason Kokrak 40-1
Will Zalatoris 40-1
Harris English 50-1
Max Homa 50-1
Cameron Tringale 60-1
Kevin Na 60-1
Justin Rose 60-1
Branden Grace 66-1
Rickie Fowler 66-1
Kevin Kisner 70-1
Cameron Davis 70-1
Christiaan Bezuidenhout 70-1
Adam Hadwin 80-1
Robert MacIntyre 80-1
Victor Perez 80-1
Talor Gooch 90-1
Alex Noren 90-1
Lanto Griffin 90-1
Shane Lowry 100-1
Maverick McNealy 100-1
Chris Kirk 100-1
J.T. Poston 100-1
Matt Jones 100-1
Matt Wallace 100-1
Henrik Stenson 100-1
Ian Poulter 100-1
Charley Hoffman 100-1
Lee Westwood 100-1
Si-Woo Kim 100-1

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