The PGA Tour’s West Coast Swing continues on Friday (AEDT) as The American Express tees off from La Quinta’s picturesque greens in California.
Previously known as the Desert Classic, The American Express holds up to $6.7 million in prizemoney and continues to draw more and more talent each and every year.
Surprise contender Adam Long secured his first win on Tour at this event last year thanks to a remarkable 13-foot birdie putt on the final hole.
The 32-year-old returns to defend his crown, but he’ll have his work cut out against a quality field made up of Rickie Fowler, Phil Mickelson and a handful of others.
Golf is back in full swing, so if you need help laying some bets this weekend, be sure to read our entire 2020 The American Express Preview below.
2020 The American Express Best Bet
Im – $19.00
The PGA’s brightest prospect returns for another tilt after finishing T12 at last year’s Desert Classic. Everyone agrees the Korean superstar is due for his first PGA Tour victory, and the form more than stacks up for a big weekend at PGA West. Im has finished Top 25 in 21 of his 42 starts on Tour and is fresh off a very impressive T21 at the Sony Open last week. With a sharp putting game and some accuracy off the tee to match, Im lines up as a serious winning chance.
2020 The American Express Top 10 Finish
Phil Mickelson – $5.00
Lefty turns 50 in June, but keep in mind he finished tied for second at this event last year. Phil always looked tough to beat after tying a career-best opening round 60, which eventually led to him winning the Pebble Beach Pro-Am three weeks later. With two podium finishes in this event since 2016, who are we to count out the great one?
2020 The American Express Top 20 Finish
Charles Howell III – $2.25
Howell looks to be one of the biggest dark horses this weekend as he hopes to continue his run of form at PGA West. The 40-year-old has finished Top 20 in this event three times since 2016 and comes in fresh from a T12 at the Sony Open last week.
Kevin Kisner – $2.25
Four consecutive Top 20 finishes leaves Kisner in line for his fifth win on Tour sometime very soon. The veteran has only ever finished as high as T25 at this event, but after carding a third-round 64 at Waialae last week, you certainly can’t count him out.
Brian Harman – $2.50
It’s easy to forget Harman was right in the thick of the action last week at the Sony Open before two disappointing final rounds saw him finish T32. The American opened with back-to-back 68’s, meaning we could see him somewhere near the finish this week with a little consistency. Harman also holds three Top 20 finishes in this event, so it’s worth taking a stab at this price.
2020 The American Express Best Roughie
Molinari – $41.00
It’s rare to find Molinari at long odds, but perhaps the bookmakers are factoring in the Italians two months’ worth of rest. Either way, Molinari finished T12 at this event back in 2017, so he still looks to be one of the best roughies in the field.
2020 The American Express Field
Fowler – $13.00
The hometown boy has been installed as the favourite this weekend as he returns to California following an impressive T5 at the Tournament of Champions a fortnight ago. Fowler hasn’t won on Tour since his victory at the Phoenix Open back in February, but he should feel confident with the home crowd firmly behind him. Having last played this course back in 2014 where he finished T33, Fowler certainly won’t be short on motivation.
Finau – $23.00
Still searching for that elusive second Tour win, Finau now heads to California looking to build on the momentum he gained with a T5 finish at last week’s Hong Kong Open. The American played a big part in Team USA’s Presidents Cup win and has enjoyed plenty of rest over the New Year break. Considering this is Finau’s first appearance in this event since missing the cut in 2016 though, it’s tough to back him outright at this price.
Hun An – $29.00
The Koreans could be in for a big weekend if Sungjae Im and Byeong Hun An both bring their A-game in California. The last time we saw Hun An he finished T14 the WGC Champions back in November – his third consecutive Top 20 finish.
Scheffler – $29.00
Scheffler chose to skip the Hawaiian doubleheader, meaning he’s well-rested and ready to fire this weekend. The 23-year-old has only ever finished as high as third on Tour, but his late form in November last year (T3 at the Bermuda Championship, T5 the RSM Classic) suggests he’s every chance at challenging the favourites.
English – $51.00
Harris English is a name to watch this year as he continues to fly under the radar. Before missing the cut at The RSM Classic, English strung together back-to-back top-five finishes at the Houston Open and the Mayakoba Golf Classic. Also finished T11 at this event back in 2018.
Long – $91.00
Long has been more fizz than flair since he won this event last year. The defending champ has missed the cut 14 times since defeating Adam Hadwin by a stroke, including last week at the Sony Open where he opened with a first-round 72. Familiarity with the course could keep Long competitive, but it’s hard to see a repeat performance happening.