Tour Championship value plays include winner, top 5: Best Bets for August 23

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Viktor Hovland reacts after making his birdie putt on the 18th green during the final round of the BMW Championship golf tournament, Sunday, Aug. 20, 2023, in Olympia Fields, Ill. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Each day, one of our experts will offer up a best bet (or two or three) that mobile sportsbooks are offering. It might be a traditional spread bet, a player prop or one of the various odds boosts that books offer.

Here are our best bets for Wednesday, August 23:

TOP PLAY

The play: Tour Championship, Viktor Hovland to win without Scottie Scheffler

The odds: +320

The book: FanDuel Sportsbook

Time/TV: Thursday through Sunday (ESPN+, Golf Channel all four days; CBS on Saturday and Sunday)

Our take: We’re down to the final 30, but not all is equal in the PGA’s Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta. In case you’re new to golf betting, the championship begins with the top-ranked player opening with a distinct advantage at 10-under, and that’s Scottie Scheffler. Those ranked behind him also gain an advantage weighted on their positioning.

That being said, there simply is no value in betting on Scheffler at +130 or thereabouts. That’s where this bet comes in.

We love the way Hovland has played as of late, and he knows how to play this East Lake course. One thing we know is the most accurate golfer is going to have a great chance to finish at or near the top of the leaderboard, and Hovland, who will begin the championship at -8, is the most accurate off the tee among those opening at -6 or better.

Taking out Scheffler obviously makes this an easier play, and the price here is about right.

Winning the BMW last week helped Hovland move into second place and grab that -8. Can he hold off Rory McIlroy and some of the other top pros right on his tail? This time last year, we would have said no, but Hovland has proven he can handle the heat – both figuratively and literally, as temps are expected to be in the mid-90s throughout the weekend.

RAHM UNDER THE RADAR?

The play: Jon Rahm to finish in the top 5

The odds/bet: +100

The book: FanDuel Sportsbook

Our take: Because he hasn’t been very good since his return from a long vacation, quite a few “experts” are shying away from Rahm this weekend, but we don’t just think he’s a great value at near even money to finish in the top 5. We absolutely think he can win this thing (starting at -6), and we’re not going to stop anyone who wants to throw a few bucks on him to win at +850 or so.

We like taking the safe route, and this is a great venue for him. We know he’s long off the tee, and if he can relatively stay out of the Bermuda rough, Rahm is going to have a major advantage.

Certainly enough of an advantage for us to go top 5.

HOW WE’VE FARED

Tuesday’s best bets

MLB money line: Orioles over Blue Jays (LOST)

MLB run line: Yankees -1.5 over Nationals (LOST)

Tuesday’s record: 0-2

Total for the week: 2-2

Total for August: 17-29

Total for 2023: 191-223

NOTE: If a line or odds are minus, it considers the juice one must lay to place the bet. Ex: Team A is -160 on the money line, one would have to bet $160 to win $100 (or $16 to win $10). OR Team B is a 5-point favorite at -110, one would have to bet $110 to win $100 (or $11 to win $10.)

Conversely, on positive lines, if Team C is +140 on the money line, $100 would bring in $140 (or $10 to win $14).

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