PGA Picks: Stenson dominates in Mexico City's thin air

The eyes of the golf world descend upon Mexico City this week for the latest edition of the World Golf Championships.

This spot on the calendar has traditionally been reserved for the event at Trump Doral in Florida, but moved south of the border for this year’s tournament.

With such stacked fields, WGC events can be very difficult to handicap, and given the mystery surrounding the Club Golf Du Chapultepec, this weekend’s tournament brings added difficulty.

With the course sitting over 7,700 feet above, expect to see some 400-yard drives soaring through the thin air around Mexico City.

Here are the players worth looking at this week:

Favorite to watch (Odds less than 25/1)

Henrik Stenson

Henrik Stenson only has two starts this year, but with a second and an eighth-place finish to show for them, his game is clearly in top form. The 40-year-old has played well against golf’s toughest fields throughout his career, with a solid second-place spot in October’s WGC-HSBC Champions. Stenson’s precision iron game should help punish the high number of par-4s around the Mexico City track that measure less than 410 yards.

Odds to win: 12/1
Top-5 odds: 5/2

2nd Tier (Odds greater than 25/1)

Jon Rahm

The long-hitting Spaniard will be another who feasts on the high altitude in Mexico City. The 22-year-old has finished in the top 20 in five of his seven starts this season, including his first win at Torrey Pines in late January. Rahm’s length will certainly help him attack the par-5s at Chapultepec Golf Club, an essential for scoring well on the challenging layout.

Odds to win: 30/1
Top-5 odds: 13/2

Long shot (Odds greater than 50/1)

Thomas Pieters

There are few players longer than the Belgian bomber, and Thomas Pieters should be able to overpower the layout with his booming tee ball. The lanky youngster hasn’t had a strong start to the season coming off his massive success at the Ryder Cup, but the trip to Mexico could be just what he needs.

Odds to win: 55/1
Top-5 odds: 10/1

Super long shot (Odds greater than 80/1)

Daniel Berger

Daniel Berger is no stranger to success at the WGC, as the Floridian posted a solid second-place finish at the WGC-HSBC Champions in October. The 23-year-old has been hit or miss in his last three tournaments, missing two cuts and finishing seventh in the other, but should perform well with the favorable layout in Mexico.

Odds to win: 100/1
Top-5 odds: 16/1

Hit this bet, buy a car (Odds greater than 125/1)

Jhonattan Vegas

Jhonattan Vegas comes in hot after a fourth-place finish at the Honda Classic last weekend. The 32-year-old led the field in strokes gained off the tee, which should be an important stat this week at Club de Golf Chapultepec. Vegas has been a model of consistency this season, with six straight top-35 finishes, and at 125/1 he’s certainly worth a look.

Odds to win: 125/1
Top-5 odds: 20/1

Last week’s picks

Justin Thomas: MC
Brooks Koepka: MC
Martin Kaymer: T-4
Billy Horschel: T-4
Kyle Stanley: MC

Season Record (Through 8 events)

Wins: 3
Top 5: 7

(Odds courtesy: Paddy Power)

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