Gdula's Golf Simulations and Betting Picks: Hewlett Packard Enterprise Houston Open

Who is rating as a betting value this week at Memorial Park in Houston based on thousands of event simulations?

Volatility is the name of the game in golf, and picking winners isn't easy. With fields of 150-plus golfers sometimes being separated by how a putt or two falls each week, predicting golf can be absurdly tough.

We'll never be able to capture everything that goes into a golfer's expectations for a week, but we can try to account for that by simulating out the weekend and seeing what happens.

The Process

Over the years, I have made plenty of tweaks to my original golf model, which uses a combination of the OWGR's field strength numbers and datagolf's field strength numbers to adjust each golfer's score relative to the field (on the PGA Tour, the European Tour, and the Korn Ferry Tour).

The ultimate goal is to place a score from the Waste Management Open, the BMW International Open, and the Knoxville Open on level playing fields. This adjusted strokes metric lets me see how golfers are performing across all tours. From there, a golfer's adjusted stroke data is combined with their round-to-round variance to see how the field is likely to perform when playing out the event thousands of times.

In addition to that long-term adjusted form, I factor in course-level adjustments for course fit.

I run a second model that uses more granular strokes gained data, which allows me to adjust for course fit easily. The results are averaged out.

I let the data do the talking and don't make many tweaks -- if any. Golfers with a small sample get regressed to a low-end PGA Tour player to round out their samples. Data points are weighted more heavily toward recent performance.

Here are the most likely winners for the Hewlett Packard Enterprise Houston Open, according to the models, as well as their Golf odds win odds.

Golfer FanDuel
Win% Top-
Cameron Smith$11,6005.3%28.2%78.5%+2300
Sam Burns$12,0004.2%26.0%76.7%+1800
Scottie Scheffler$11,8003.9%25.2%76.5%+1800
Sungjae Im$11,9003.6%24.7%76.0%+2400
Tony Finau$11,7003.1%21.8%74.3%+2500
Tyrrell Hatton$11,0002.7%19.4%71.8%+3100
Talor Gooch$11,2002.4%18.3%71.1%+3000
Cameron Tringale$9,9002.2%17.5%70.4%+4700
Brooks Koepka$11,4002.1%17.7%70.6%+3000
Shane Lowry$10,1002.1%16.6%69.9%+4600
Patrick Reed$10,9002.1%15.5%68.7%+3600
Joaquin Niemann$10,8002.1%17.6%71.0%+3000
Adam Scott$10,6002.0%16.3%69.1%+3600
Aaron Wise$10,7001.9%16.9%70.0%+3300
Christiaan Bezuidenhout$9,7001.8%14.8%67.5%+6000
Marc Leishman$10,3001.8%13.3%65.2%+4100
Russell Henley$9,8001.7%15.0%68.2%+4700
Jason Kokrak$10,2001.7%14.1%66.7%+4500
Maverick McNealy$10,4001.6%15.6%68.4%+3600
Charley Hoffman$8,9001.6%13.1%65.6%+10000
Seamus Power$9,8001.5%14.0%66.8%+6000
Ian Poulter$9,5001.5%13.8%66.9%+7500
Harold Varner III$9,6001.5%14.3%67.0%+7000
Kevin Streelman$9,3001.4%12.3%64.8%+7500
Max Homa$10,0001.4%12.2%64.5%+4700
Taylor Moore$8,4001.3%12.4%65.1%+12000
Carlos Ortiz$10,5001.3%12.5%64.6%+3400
Brian Harman$8,9001.2%12.1%65.1%+10000
Jhonattan Vegas$8,8001.1%11.7%63.0%+10000
Lanto Griffin$9,9001.1%10.3%61.9%+4500
Emiliano Grillo$9,1001.0%10.0%61.4%+10000
Chad Ramey$9,2001.0%10.8%62.7%+9000
Erik van Rooyen$9,4001.0%10.2%60.8%+8000
Branden Grace$9,5000.9%10.2%61.1%+9000
Gary Woodland$9,0000.9%9.8%61.1%+9000
Stewart Cink$8,0000.9%8.5%58.3%+15000
Ryan Palmer$8,7000.8%9.4%60.5%+12000
Cameron Davis$8,8000.8%7.7%57.3%+10000
Mackenzie Hughes$9,6000.8%9.7%61.7%+6000
Joel Dahmen$9,0000.8%8.9%58.7%+9000
Pat Perez$8,3000.8%7.9%58.4%+15000
C.T. Pan$9,1000.8%8.4%58.7%+9000
Jason Day$9,4000.8%9.2%59.3%+7500
Guillermo Mito Pereira$9,7000.8%9.2%60.4%+8000
Luke List$8,4000.7%9.2%60.1%+15000
Matthew Wolff$11,3000.7%9.5%60.3%+2900
Stephan Jaeger$8,3000.7%7.7%57.7%+15000
Tom Hoge$8,2000.7%7.8%57.8%+15000
Sebastian Munoz$9,2000.7%7.8%57.6%+9000
Russell Knox$9,0000.6%7.4%56.6%+9000
Lee Westwood$8,9000.6%6.8%56.0%+10000
Chez Reavie$8,5000.6%8.1%58.3%+12000
Harry Higgs$8,4000.6%7.1%56.0%+15000
Henrik Norlander$8,5000.6%6.7%55.4%+12000
Kyle Stanley$8,0000.5%7.2%56.7%+17000
James Hahn$7,9000.5%6.4%54.8%+17000
Martin Laird$8,5000.5%8.3%58.6%+12000
Aaron Rai$8,6000.5%7.2%56.4%+12000
Brian Stuard$8,2000.5%6.2%54.7%+15000
Matthias Schwab$8,8000.5%8.0%58.4%+10000
Hank Lebioda$7,3000.5%6.0%53.6%+23000
Danny Willett$8,7000.5%6.1%54.1%+12000
Zach Johnson$7,2000.5%5.7%53.2%+29000

The model is pretty big on Cameron Smith (+2300) this week, which makes sense given last year's emphasis on strokes gained: around the green at Memorial Park. I've bet him already.

The model sees Sam Burns (+1800) and Scottie Scheffler (+1800) as overvalued despite sitting top-three in win odds.

It isn't actually until Shane Lowry (+4600) that we see another even value opportunity. Cameron Tringale (+4700) also fits there, as does Christiaan Bezuidenhout (+6000), Seamus Power (+6000), Harold Varner (+7000), Ian Poulter (+7500), and Kevin Streelman (+7500).

Longshot value belongs to Charley Hoffman (+10000), Brian Harman (+10000), Jhonattan Vegas (+10000), and Emiliano Grillo (+10000).

I'm in on Smith, Lowry, Tringale, Bezuidenhout, and Hoffman. I'm also considering going against the model's recommendations with Tony Finau (+2500) and Tyrrell Hatton (+3100).