This week the Tour makes the short trek over to Hilton Head Island for the RBC Heritage at Harbour Town Golf Links. That this is a signature event remains mind-boggling to me. The last thing many players want to do after a Major is to be forced to play another tournament, especially one that will guarantee them all four rounds. I expect to see some weird results from players this week, whether due to a Masters hangover or a fact they’re being compelled to play a course that doesn’t suit their game. So it’s best to target some of your bets on players who enjoy playing Harbour Town and who will likely give their best effort this week. Let’s dive into three of those:

Matt Fitzpatrick Top 20 -110

Fitz has played this event each of the last eight years, and has said that this is his favorite event on Tour. He has finished 14th or better in four of the last six years, and those were full-field events. We now have a stronger field, but with only 69 players, a top-20 finish seems very plausible. His game is predicated on precision and accuracy with his ability to work the ball both ways on command. He comes into this event with finishes of 21st or better in five of his last seven events.

Tournament Head-to-Head Matchup: Sahith Theegala -130 over Sam Burns (DraftKings)

When handicapping and pricing out tournament matchups, one has to consider the consistency of each player. You aren’t looking to win the tournament, but merely beat the other player. Two players may have similar upside to win or finish top 10 but vastly different projected median/average finishes. This is exactly the case with Theegala and Burns. Theegala is a very consistent player. He hasn’t lost three or more strokes to the field average in any event in the last year! On the other hand, Burns has done this multiple times including last week at the Masters. Having those dud weeks are basically gifts to your head-to-head opponent. This week features some added variability for Burns, as his wife is due with their child within the next week. I would have to expect there is a chance that Burns tees it up but doesn’t finish the event. In that case, Theegala is the automatic winner. 

Tournament Head-to-Head Matchup: Patrick Cantlay -105 over Rory McIlroy (Fanduel)

Patrick Cantlay loves Harbour Town and how it fits his game as shown that he played here six of the last seven years with five top-seven finishes. Cantlay’s game is predicated on precision and being able to plod his way strategically around the golf course. Rory, on the other hand, has only played the Heritage in 2020, when this was one of the first events held after the COVID shutdown. He’s purposely avoided this course and for good reason. Harbour Town takes his biggest weapon, driver, out of his hand on many holes. Rory didn’t have his best golf last week at Augusta, a course that suits his game perfectly. Add to that all of the LIV rumor distractions and I believe that McIlroy will deliver a subpar result this week, while Cantlay likely contends. Give me Cantlay -105 over Rory.