2023 3M Open Preview: Everything To Know About TPC Twin Cities

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Written By John Haslbauer | Last Updated
3M Open odds

The 3M Open returns to Minnesota with another 2023 PGA TOUR contest slated for TPC Twin Cities. Find longer golf odds at the best sports betting sites to increase your potential 3M Open payouts. Tony Finau, Cameron Young, and Justin Thomas are the favorites for this year’s 3M Open.

We turn the page from The Open to another Open, as the PGA TOUR schedule resumes in Minnesota. 2023 3M Open odds require handicapping for a familiar course, TPC Twin Cities, host of this event since 2019.

It will be far less “open” on the course itself than what we’ve grown accustomed.The links swing overseas offered back-to-back events exposed to the elements in sloping, firm and fast fairway conditions. Instead, it’s a return to the familiar confines of parkland golf with a more grown out rough, fairways lined with trees, and ample water hazards. That means a reward for control off the tee again, and creates an appealing buy-low opportunity for any players that showed us links golf may not be for them.

Let’s run through the key facts and info about TPC Twin Cities, hoping for a winning outright ticket from 2023 3M Open odds.

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3M OPEN ODDS: THE FAVORITES

Scroll to the bottom for complete outright odds. Here are the opening odds Monday morning for favorites at 20-1 or shorter. It was not too long ago Justin Thomas would have likely been a single-digit favorite in this field. His struggles continue though, as he tries to play his way into the FedEx Cup Playoffs.

THE FIELD AT A GLANCE

It would be hard to expect the masses from the The Open Championship to make the journey to Minnesota for this fledgling event. This event lacks the same prestige, historical significance, purse, or FedEx Cup points as a Major. However, just two events remaining on the PGA TOUR schedule before the playoffs kick off. Many of the top players who made the trip to the Twin Cities did so out of desperation, jockeying for position to secure a place within the top 70 of the FedEx Cup Playoffs.

With the playoffs tightening from the traditional 125 to 70, the depth of the 3M Open field markedly improved this year compared to its first four instances. With the playoff bubble in mind, 27 players in this field fall between No. 55 and No. 85 in the current FedEx Cup Standings.

There is a clear line between the top players and the rest of the pack this week. Six OWGR top-35 players play this weekend: Tony Finau, Cameron Young, Justin Thomas, Sungjae Im, Sepp Straka, and Hideki Matsuyama. A total of 18 players from last week’s British Open field made the 10-hour flight from Liverpool to Minnesota. That list also includes Sahith Theegala, JT Poston, Emiliano Grillo, and Nicolai Hojgaard, who round out the list of secondary contenders.

Finau parlayed a hot final round at the British Open in 2022 into a 3M Open victory. It would be a false narrative to count out the top players in this field on the merit of jet lag or emotional post-major hangover alone. Cameron Champ is the only other past 3M Open winner returning to the field this week, as Michael Thompson and Matthew Wolff will each be absent.

INTRODUCTION TO TPC TWIN CITIES

TPC Twin Cities is your quintessential TPC layout. It features a steady mix of birdie opportunities on short par-4s, reachable par-5s, and stadium-style par-3s to keep the crowds engaged. Water hazards threaten throughout, so Bogey Avoidance and control OTT will be at more of a premium here. As a 7,431-yard par-71, length is an advantage, and its oversized greens render SG: ARG almost completely inconsequential.

The 3M Open was added to the TOUR rotation in 2019. TPC Twin Cities went through a renovation project following the 2018 3M Championship to adapt the course and present more of a challenge to modern TOUR players. That project primarily consisted of pushing tees back, adding nearly 300 yards in length, and expanding water hazards to pose more of a persistent threat on tee shots and approaches.

As a result, we’ve seen this new layout reward the best total drivers who control their misses, avoid hazards, and position themselves to attack pins on large, receptive greens. We’ve seen moderate winning scores of -17 and -15 in the last two years, making TPC Twin Cities more than a pure birdie-fest.

Tournament founder Hollis Cavner gave a description of how he wants the 3M Open to play, “We want birdies and train wrecks, and we don’t want to be the hardest golf course on the tour.”

Birdies and train wrecks are the easiest way to capture the interest of fans at large. This event, despite lacking the star power in its field, has done an excellent job of capturing dramatic conclusions. As an aside with the Barracuda Championship on the mind from last week, this would be the perfect venue for a Stableford scoring tournament, as one of the best examples of a course where a range of birdies and bogeys are both in play.

For TPC Twin Cities course specs, hole-by-hole breakdown with yardages, and past 3M Open winners with their pre-tournament odds, visit our 3M Open odds page.

Editor’s Note

COURSE HISTORY AND COURSE COMPS

Though we’ve only had a four-year sample of events to reference from, course history had not proven to be predictive at all for the eventual winners prior to Finau’s win in 2022. Matthew Wolff won here in his fourth career start on the PGA TOUR, Michael Thompson finished last among those who made the cut at the 2019 3M Open before his victory in 2020, and Cameron Champ missed the cut in his only prior appearance at this event. Considering the winner finished No. 27 and No. 16 in the field in SG: T2G, respectively, it’s understandable that recent performance on the course can be overlooked, if you’re able to make up for it on the greens.

Between the LIV defectors and the 3M Open’s new position on the PGA TOUR schedule immediately following The Open, plenty of players with sustained course history at this event will be absent. In fact, six of the top 20 players in terms of total strokes gained at the 3M Open – Schwartzel, Wolff, DeChambeau, Oosthuizen, Ortiz, and Perez – fled to LIV. 

Tony Finau

Finau broke a streak of champions randomly popping at the 3M Open, despite their lack of prior results at the event. Understandably, Finau’s game translates to any golf course and it’s not dependent on an exact course fit. A 3M Open resume that includes finishes of T23, T3, T28, and first is an encouraging baseline for Finau despite some shaky recent form.

A wise man once said to never fade Garnett in Minnesota. Brice “The Big Ticket” Garnett has been as consistent as they come at the 3M Open with finishes of T23, T26, T16, and T31 over his first four appearances at this event.

Just seven players made it through each cut at the 3M Open (min. three appearances): Tony Finau, Adam Hadwin, Brice Garnett, Hank Lebioda, Michael Gligic, Patton Kizzire, and Aaron Baddeley. Only 11 players have recorded multiple top-25 finishes in this event: Finau, Garnett, Hadwin, Lebioda, Sungjae Im, Adam Long, Emiliano Grillo, Cam Davis, Doug Ghim, Scott Piercy, and Cameron Champ,

Players to record a top-10 finish in their one prior debut include Greyson Sigg, Callum Tarren, and Alex Noren. Notables with poor history across multiple appearances at the 3M Open include Sahith Theegala, Charley Hoffman, and Harry Higgs. 

The top-10 players in Course History at TPC Twin Cities are Tony Finau, Adam Hadwin, Brice Garnett, Sungjae Im, Adam Long, Emiliano Grillo, Cam Davis, Hank Lebioda, Tom Hoge, and Michael Gligic.

Course Comps

PGA National, host of the Honda Classic, stands out to me as the top comp course from both the eye test and overlapping leaderboards. Both PGA National and TPC Twin Cities place an emphasis on total driving with a true penalty for wayward drives with persistent water hazards. Thompson has two career PGA TOUR wins, coming at the 3M Open and Honda Classic. Im is a past Honda Classic champion with a T2 at the 3M Open. Even 2022 Honda Classic champion Sepp Straka has had some success here, ranking No. 2 in SG: Ball Striking.

Though difficult to track through SG data, TPC Louisiana is also a strong comp, featuring many persistent water hazards and some strong leaderboard overlap. Six players finished top-20 in both events in 2021. Additionally, Stuard was the last to win the Zurich Classic at TPC Louisiana as an individual Stroke Play event in 2016, and posted a T6 finish in his 3M Open debut. Nick Hardy, Adam Hadwin, Sungjae Im, Keith Mitchell, Matthew NeSmith, and Vincent Norrman all finished top-10 at the 2022 Zurich Classic. Aside form the overlapping leaderboard trend, it also makes sense that TPC Louisiana would reward a similar profile of player as TPC Twin Cities, as both layouts sit at 7,400 yards with water hazards throughout. That rewards an aggressive style of play to attack pins for birdies.

Detroit Golf Club, Silverado Resort, TPC Deere Run, TPC Summerlin, TPC San Antonio all share similar scoring conditions, yielding winning scores in the high teens under par and a premium on SG: OTT. 

Combine performance across this list and the top 10 players in Comp Course History here are: Tony Finau, Sungjae Im, Justin Thomas, JT Poston, Tom Hoge, Alex Noren, Stephan Jaeger, JJ Spaun, Hideki Matsuyama, and Sepp Straka.

KEY STATS TO CONSIDER WITH 3M OPEN ODDS

  • SG: OTT
  • SG: APP
  • SG: Ball Striking
  • Birdies or Better Gained (Easy Scoring Conditions) / Opportunities Gained
  • Par-5 Scoring
  • SG: OTT (Difficult-to-hit Fairways)
  • SG: Putting (Bent)
  • Course & Comp Course History

2021 3M Open champion (and triple-digit longshot) Champ was bottom-10 on the PGA TOUR in SG: P on the 2021 season entering the 3M Open. He proceeded to lead the field in SG: P, gaining 8.5 strokes for the week. Last year, Finau also entered in inconsistent form on the greens, ranking No. 92 in SG: P over his last 50 rounds leading in. With oversized greens that lack nuance, TPC Twin Cities has opened the door for lesser putters to spike. It’s a week I put some of the lowest weight on short game stats, instead leaning all in on the top ball strikers.

From a ball-striking standpoint, I’m putting the most weight in my model on SG: OTT, isolating the players best equipped to handle the length of this course while also avoiding the constant water hazards. The top-10 in SG: OTT are Brent Grant, Garrick Higgo, Kevin Yu, Keith Mitchell, Gary Woodland, Ludvig Aberg, SH Kim, Cameron Young, Cam Davis, and Luke List. From a Total Driving standpoint, just nine players rank top-50 in both Driving Distance and Driving Accuracy: Grant, Higgo, Ryan Palmer, Austin Eckroat, Lee Hodges, Tony Finau, Sepp Straka, CT Pan, and Tano Goya.

Opportunities Gained

All of the contenders at the 3M Open have leaned on spike approach play. That’s nothing new for a PGA TOUR event, but with a very balanced distribution of hole ranges, I’m looking broadly at the top players in terms of SG: APP. The top-10 include Mark Hubbard, Hideki Matsuyama, Lucas Glover, Chez Reavie, Tony Finau, Aaron Rai, Nate Lashley, Christiaan Bezuidenhout, Gary Woodland, and Kevin Roy.

To take a step further beyond approach play, this shapes up to be the perfect set up to lean into the Opportunities Gained stat, which identifies the players who generate the highest volume of birdie opportunities. That top-10 includes Hideki Matsuyama, Lucas Glover, Justin Thomas, Ryan Palmer, Ben Martin, Ludvig Aberg, Chez Reavie, Eric Cole, Stephan Jaeger, and Sungjae Im.

It may sound like a given every single week on the PGA TOUR, but in an event that described to generate birdies and train wrecks, it’s going to be crucial to find the players who are in control of their games in terms of both Birdie or Better Gained and Bogey Avoidance.  There are just 10 players who rank top-30 in both categories: Hideki Matsuyama, Ben Martin, Eric Cole, Stephan Jaeger, Cameron Young, Mark Hubbard, Tony Finau, Emiliano Grillo, and Ryan Fox.

The perfect player profile for this week should be above average in SG: OTT, SG: APP, Opportunities Gained, Bogey Avoidance, and Comp Course History. There are six players who rank top-40 in each of those categories: Sepp Straka, Stephan Jaeger, Tony Finau, Lucas Glover, Hideki Matsuyama, and Gary Woodland.

Correlations

Looking at the correlation charts this week, we have limited data from the four years of this event, but it is starting to tell a more consistent story. Par-3 Scoring and P4: 450-500 see a great decline in importance compared to TOUR average. Some outlier performances from Cameron Champ and Michael Thompson have driven SG: OTT down the board in favor of SG: P, however it’s still fair to say that trending OTT form entering this event is far more predictive than putting form.

It’s SG: APP and Par-4: 350-400 that make the biggest jump in importance at this event, which checks out considering the number of drivable par-4s and premium on generating birdie opportunities from these wider fairways.

stats to know for 3M open odds
Top-10 Correlated Stats with SG: TOT
Top-10 Correlated Stats with SG: TOT at TPC Twin Cities

Only 10 players in the field rank above average in each of the above 10 key stat categories: Sepp Straka, Tony Finau, Hideki Matsuyama, Gary Woodland, Mark Hubbard, Chez Reavie, Kevin Roy, Michael Kim, and…Austin Eckroat.

PLAYER SPOTLIGHT: Austin Eckroat

The 3M Open presents a rare opportunity for the elite ball strikers – who would otherwise give strokes back to the field with their short game – to contend. That should be music to a player like Austin Eckroat’s ears. He ranks top-20 in SG: Ball Striking while outside the top-50 in SG: ARG and SG: Short Game. At TPC Twin Cities, the generous greens have produced a high green in regulation percentage, which rewards the top ball-strikers and places little need for scrambling.

Eckroat may have drawn inspiration from Matthew Wolff’s victory in 2019. Both were teammates (alongside Viktor Hovland) at Oklahoma State that season, so he may have gotten some insider tips on what it takes to contend here on campus afterwards.

Eckroat has been on a tear since March this season, thriving in easy scoring conditions with top-5s at the Puntacana Championship and AT&T Byron Nelson. While he’s proven comfortable racking up birdies, Eckroat has held his own at tougher tests as well, finishing T16 at the Charles Schwab Challenge and T10 at the U.S. Open.

A T16 finisher in his 2021 debut at the 3M Open, there may still be some buy-low opportunity on Eckroat this week. He’s looking to bounce back from a couple down performances at the Rocket Mortgage Classic and Scottish Open.

WHAT TO WATCH FOR AT THE 2023 3m Open

With winning scores in the range of -15 to -21 over its first four years hosting this event, we should expect relatively benign scoring conditions, and winning mark in the high teens under par. I’m looking to hone in on the best ball-strikers in the field this week, who can consistently avoid hazards, while also setting themselves up to aggressively attack pins. 

3M Open odds have produced a couple of unrewarded Sunday sweats for me over the last few years from an outright perspective. The formula for me has always been reliable players off the tee with plus-distance, elite ball striking, and proven results on comp courses with easy scoring conditions. There are plenty of viable options this week that fit the same mold, so I’m happy to go right back to the well.

With all the course-fit profiles in mind, I’m leaning early towards the below player pool. Naturally, I’m looking their way in the 2023 3M Open odds, as well. I’ve broken the list down by projected pricing/odds tier for DraftKings.  

2023 3M Open Model Breakdown

In my model, I’m emphasizing SG: OTT, SG: APP, Comp Course History, Opportunities Gained and Birdies or Better Gained, followed by a more balanced mix of Par-5 Scoring, Good Drives Gained, and SG: P (Bent),

Model Favorites

It’s not Finau, Young, or JT who tops the model this week, but another expected Ryder Cupper instead: Sepp Straka. Straka’s rise up the Sunday leaderboard en route to his John Deere Classic victory has proven not to be a one-off fluke. He’s now gained strokes off the tee in nine consecutive events and gained strokes putting all but twice over that span. A volatile player, Straka’s spike ball striking upside makes him an appealing consideration as his form remains hot to close out the season.

After Straka, the rest of my model’s top 10 is rounded out by: Sungjae Im, Stephan Jaeger, Tony Finau, Lucas Glover, Hideki Matsuyama, Emiliano Grillo, Gary Woodland, Aaron Rai, and Ryan Palmer.

When 2023 3M Open odds release Monday, I’ll look to target Gary Woodland, Ludvig Aberg, Lucas Glover, and Austin Eckroat depending on where the odds ultimately fall.

Check back in later this week for more updates, and best of luck navigating the 2023 3M Open odds!

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