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Golf: U.S. Open Preview

Golf: U.S. Open Preview 7 months 1 week ago #484349

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Betting news, trends, odds and predictions from various handicappers and websites for Tuesday 6/12/18 .
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Golf: U.S. Open Preview 7 months 1 week ago #484350

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I (Shazman) have my annual U.S. Open golf pool this week. If anyone is interested in joining the information is in the link below. 90% Payout

U.S. Open Pool
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Golf: U.S. Open Preview 7 months 1 week ago #484351

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U.S. Open Preview
June 11, 2018
By Dan Daly

What’s the old saying; ‘A weatherman is the only person that can be wrong more than 50% of the time and still have a job?’

Well, apparently Mike Davis (who runs the USGA for those that don’t know) is the only person that can be wrong ONE-HUNDRED percent of the time and still have a job. It’s truly amazing actually.

In the first 110 US Open’s, four players had ever reached 10-under par or better. In the seven US Open’s since Davis took over, ELEVEN players have reached 10-under or better including three of the four lowest winning scores in relation to par. Throw in the disastrous set-up at Chamber’s Bay in 2015 and the complete DJ debacle at Oakmont in 2016 and the Mike Davis era at the USGA is officially the worst tenure any one person has ever had at one organization…and it’s not even close.

I tell you this because the 2018 US Open, like the 2016 US Open, returns to one of the best golf courses in the world, Shinnecock Hills (one that should be on a very short list to even host a US Open) yet I’m certain that Mike Davis will find a way to ruin this majestic course as well. The course has been lengthened by 449 yards (or roughly 25 yards per hole) since it was last played there in 2004. That’s basically nothing when you throw in technology and the modern golf ball. So what did Mike Davis do…he WIDENED the fairways by an avg of 15 yards per hole (or roughly 60%) from 25.57 to 41.57 yards per hole. Like I said, Mike Davis is a complete moron who can single-handedly ruin the best golf courses in America.

So how will Mike Davis affect this year’s US Open? Let’s break down the field and find out.

As always, betting odds are at the time this was written and will likely change throughout the week.

Rory McIlroy 10/1 – Rory currently has the course record on the newly designed Shinnecock Hills with a 65, so he’s got that going for him. He’s also seen a drastic improvement in his putting the last three months which lead to a win at the Arnold Palmer back in March. I will also give him bonus points for openly ripping Mike Davis and the USGA. But part of that may stem from the fact that since winning the US Open at Congressional in 2011 (where he made Mike Davis look like a fool), Rory has missed the cut at the US Open three times, including each of the past two years with only one Top-10 finish since then at Chambers Bay. Basically, as long as Mike Davis continues to run the US Open I would stay away from Rory.

Jason Day 15/1 – The guy literally withdrew from the Memorial Pro-Am with a self-described "man cold." I don’t know what that is and I don’t care, I’ll pass. I’m sure he will somehow develop chicken pox in the middle of the second round and have to play with oven mitts taped to his hands.

Rickie Fowler 18/1 – This is the year. No, this is the year. No THIS is the year. Copy/Paste. One day the Rickie Fowler super fan is going to finally get to say “I told you so.” Then again, maybe not? Either way I’m not going into major debt to continually back a horse that simply can’t cross the Major finish line first and still has less than five PGA Tour wins. I like the guy, I really do, and I think he will be around the leaderboard this weekend, I just refuse to put money on a guy that can’t ever seem to close the real deal (on the golf course anyway).

Bubba Watson 45/1 – If you ever bet on Bubba Watson to win a US Open you either don’t like money or don’t understand anything about golf…or gambling...or life in general really.

Patrick Reed 22/1 – The guy was sneaky hot going into the Masters. Not quite so hot headed into the US Open. Only six golfers have ever won the Masters and US Open in the same season…I’m willing to bet Patrick Reed isn’t the seventh.

Jon Rahm 18/1 – As far as talent goes, Rahm certainly isn’t lacking in that department. He has two PGA Tour wins and three more on the European Tour in his very short career to date. Throw in a fourth-place finish at the Masters and quite frankly at 18/1 he seems like he is due to win a major at any moment. The problem is the guy still has the maturity level of a 3 year old and if he threw that big of a temper tantrum last year at Erin Hills I can’t even fathom what Shinnecock is going to do to the guy (think Roy McAvoy when David Sims fired him mid-round). Until Rahm grows up I’ll continue to pass on him winning a major…especially the US Open.

Phil Mickelson 30/1 - The guy is a SIX time runner-up at the US Open. Strike one. Phil turns 48 on Saturday of the US Open, which would make him nearly three years older than the tournament's oldest winner (Hale Irwin/’90) IF he were to win on Sunday. Strike Two. While his 2018 has been impressive so far, Phil has missed the cut in two of his last three starts in a Major and is coming off a forgettable T-36 at the Masters. Strike Three. He’s out. And to add insult to injury, 14 years ago at Shinnecock Phil was tied with Goosen before a three-putt double bogey (from no more than five feet) on the 71st hole cost him a US Open. Leaving what I would imagine is a horrible mental scare for him around this place. Sure, Phil winning and getting redemption from 2004 and becoming just the sixth player to win the career Grand Slam in the Masters era would be a cool storybook ending on several levels…but this is the real world and here in the real world, Phil isn’t winning this week.

Bryson Dechambeau 50/1 – Say what you want about the guy and all his quirks, but he has played some of the best golf on the PGA Tour the last three months which includes a recent win at the Memorial to go with three other Top-5 finishes since March. With that said, I don’t recall a time when a guy hit it as bad as Bryson did on a Sunday (at the Memorial) and still went on to win. His short game was nothing short of magical. The bigger red flag to me though is that he has yet to contend in a major, having yet to crack the Top-30 in a Major as a professional. I think he will this week, I just think he needs a little more contending in a Major under his belt before he is ready to win one.

Brooks Koepka 28/1 – My man! The defending US Open champ where we cashed on him last year at 40/1. The wrist injury seems to be an afterthought at this point considering Koepka fired three 63s in a recent five round stretch including a T-11 at the Players and a runner-up finish at Colonial. Sure he looked very pedestrian at the St. Jude but he did the same thing last year and went on to win the next week. My bigger issue here is winning back to back. Curtis Strange (’88-89) is the only player win back to back US Open’s since Ben Hogan in 1951. In other words…it’s really frickin’ hard to do and with all due respect to Koepka I just don’t see that happening this year.

Hideki Matsuyama 30/1 – I think people forget he is only 26-years-old. The guy already has two Top-10’s at the US Open, including a T-2 last year. I just don’t think this type of course sets up as well for Hideki. His only MC at a US Open came at Oakmont, which is much more similar to Shinnecock than any other US Open he has played in (Thanks again Mike Davis).

Jordan Spieth 12/1 – I’ve learned no matter how Jordan is playing going into the Masters he will always be a threat. To a lesser degree I feel the same way about the other three Majors as well. The dude has the ability to flip a switch, the likes of which have rarely ever been seen in any sport. But my gracious, he is in one of the worst putting funks I have ever seen a PGA tour player have…at least from someone that could actually putt and putt well at one point. Spieth has as many missed cuts as he does Top-10’s in 2018 (4 of each). I certainly know better than to bet against Spieth in a Major, but there is no way I trust my money this week on that putter.

Justin Thomas 15/1 – It’s almost impossible to find a flaw in his game right now but two things stand out this week for me with JT. First, and less important, I don’t love betting on guys that are switching putters in and out in the weeks leading to major. Second, and more importantly though, Thomas recently said he and Rickie Fowler made a trip to Shinnecock last fall and "both shot the easiest 65s ever." Yeah, that’s all I needed to hear. I love JT and lord knows he is more than talented enough to win this, or any week for that matter, but I believe in Golf Gods and karma and a comment like that will not sit well with either. I certainly wouldn’t blame you for liking the recently dethroned world number one this week and I’m all for confident and even a little cocky, but quotes like that are like kryptonite for me when it comes to betting.

My Top 5 for this week…

Tommy Fleetwood 50/1 – My darkhorse pick for the week. From tee to green there aren’t many better in the world. He finished fourth at last year's US Open and I think will contend again here where ball-striking will be even more at a premium. His putting is still the wildcard, but improving, and if he can putt even halfway decent for four days don’t be surprised to see Fleetwood there on Sunday afternoon. I think at 50/1 he is a good bet this week and I really like him in prop bets against guys with similar odds. If nothing else I think he is a great play for a Top-20 and Top-10 bet this week.

Henrik Stenson 33/1 – I think any golf course that puts a premium on hitting the fairway is a huge advantage for Stenson. He is going to wear out that 3-wood of his this week and play to his strengths. My biggest concern is his all-around short game. The guy chips and putts like a 10-handicap sometimes, but with even Par a good score on this course I think Stenson plays well this week.

Justin Rose 18/1 – Rose will be a very popular pick this week, and for good reason. He is a US Open winner (at a real US Open track), he is a recent winner on Tour, he has been playing about as well as anyone on the planet the last six months and his game has little to no flaws at the moment. I think he is a safe bet this week for prop bets, matchups, the works. My only concern, and the only reason I don’t have him winning this week, is the fact that he has missed the cut six times in 12 US Open starts.

Tiger Woods 14/1 – I am a Tiger homer, I admit it, but I also can’t overlook the fact that the guy lead the field at the Memorial (and a stacked field at that) in Strokes Gained…Tee to green, Approach to the Green and proximity. Basically the three things that determine who is hitting it the best in the field that week. And it wasn’t an anomaly, he is near the top in every one of those categories for the year. Unfortunately for him it didn’t matter because arguably the greatest clutch putter in the history of golf made Adam Scott look like Ben Crenshaw…and quite frankly has for most of the year. The guy missed 7 putts inside of 5 feet for the week at The Memorial. He missed 9 putts inside of 5 feet the entire 2006 PGA Tour season. So yeah, that’s a problem. Although driving is a premium at Shinnecock his struggles off the tee don’t concern me near as much. With a fast a firm course he can hit that stinger two-iron all day and when he does miss his driver they are so far off line that the difference between barely missing and missing badly is virtually the same for everyone there. I don’t care how good he hits it, if he putts like he did at Memorial he has no chance even though his short game is also back to being one of the best on tour. BUT, if he can hit it as well as he has all year, and especially at The Memorial and somehow remembers how to putt, then yes, I think he absolutely can win this week. Remember, the guy arrived at the US Open in a twenty million dollar private yacht, most of which was paid for because he didn’t miss a single putt that mattered in a Major Championship.

And your 2018 US Open Champion…

Dustin Johnson 9/1 – I know, wow, you’re picking the favorite, how very bold of you. Well, anyone that has followed me over the years knows I hate picking the favorite and very rarely do because quite frankly since peak Tiger they very rarely win. But this week the obvious choice is in fact that correct choice. Every person I looked at this week has at least one red flag…except DJ. I actually don’t love the fact that he won last week leading in but I certainly wouldn’t classify winning the week before a Major a red flag. Even with the wider fairways, length and accuracy off the tee are going to be at a premium this week and ask yourself this. If a gun was pointed at your head and you had to pick one person in the world to hit the fairway with a driver 300+ yards would you really pick anyone other than DJ? I know I wouldn’t. Until his MC at Erin Hills last year (coming off the fluke “injury”) he had gone T-4, runner-up, win in three consecutive US Opens. Oh and his win came at Oakmont, you know the true US Open style course that required length and accuracy. Throw in the fact that he is leading the tour in Strokes Gained…off the tee, tee to green and overall, and yeah, I like his chances a lot this week. Sometimes the favorite is the favorite for a reason. I don’t know about you but “only” making nine times my money seems perfectly ok to me.
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Golf: U.S. Open Preview 7 months 1 week ago #484401

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U.S. Open - Best Bets
June 11, 2018

USGA Betting Preview
2018 U.S. Open
Shinnecock Hills Golf Club- Par 70 – 7,445

The PGA Tour season has finally arrived at its second Major, the US Open. This year the Open returns to a familiar site in Shinnecock Hills, home of the US Open most recently in 2004 when Retief Goosen edged out Phil Mickelson for one of lefty's six second place finishes at this event. Mickelson would capture the career Grand Slam with a win this week, but after missing last year's US Open to attend his daughter's graduation, history exactly isn't on Mickelson's side (more on that in a minute).

Shinnecock Hills has hosted three US Opens since 1986 (Raymond Floyd and Corey Pavin won the other two prior to 2004) but this year's course will look much different than what we have seen at US Opens here prior. This course has been lengthened by some 400 yards, the fairways widened significantly (but since brought back in a bit after last year's scoring fest at Erin Hills) and remains a Par 70. So to win this week you'd better have some length off the tee combined with a little accuracy, be solid at bogey avoidance – the USGA would love to see a winning score of between E and -6 – and be great with the putter because everyone knows US Open greens love to resemble putting on glass.

Getting back to Mickelson's DNP last year, historically, at least recently, US Open winners tend to have success at this event the year prior. Rory McIlroy (+1400) won this tournament in 2011 and he was the last winner of this tournament that either did not play or missed the cut at the US Open the year prior. Considering this event changes courses each year that trend is a bit surprising, but when trying to predict a winner here, you may want to stick with guys that at least played the weekend at Erin Hills a year ago. Each of the past six winners of this event (Webb Simpson, Justin Rose, Martin Kaymer, Jordan Spieth, Dustin Johnson, and Brooks Koepka) all found significant success at the US Open prior to winning, and given last year's bloodbath of big names missing the cut, it makes for an interesting breakdown of this year's field.

Of those most recent six winners I just listed off, their average finishing position the year prior was 21st place,with Martin Kaymer's T59 in 2013 really weighing that number down. If you take out Kaymer's finish from the group, the average finishing position of US Open winners the year prior to winning clocks in at 13.4.

Considering nobody has successfully defended their title in that span, if you're a big believer in historical trends, there is a select range of players from last year's field that fit this range and could end up lifting that trophy this year. Even sticking with guys who simply made the cut/played the weekend at Erin Hills a year ago isn't a bad idea as only four times since Jim Furyk's win at the 2003 US Open has a winner not played the weekend the year before winning. Those guys with their winning years are Jim Furyk (2003), Michael Campbell (2005), Lucas Glover (2009), and Rory McIlroy (2011).

Doing my research for this event I thought that was an important distinction to make simply because last year was a bloodbath in terms of big names – and subsequently many of this year's favorites – missing the cut. This year's favorites that did not see weekend action at Erin Hills a year ago include Dustin Johnson (+900), Rory McIlroy (+1400), Justin Rose (+1600), Tiger Woods (+1600), Jason Day (+1800), Jon Rahm (+2200), Henrik Stenson (+2500), and Phil Mickelson (+2500). That's quite the list of substantial favorites this year that I'll be avoiding for from a betting perspective.

As far as the guys I am not avoiding and will have exposure too, let's break them down by odds range now.

Golfers to Watch

Favorites (+3300 or lower)

Justin Thomas (+1400) – There hasn't really been a hotter golfer on Tour the past 12-16 months than Justin Thomas and he's got all the skill sets and variables to win his second career Major this week. Thomas is extremely long off the tee, has won on some of the toughest courses statistically on Tour this year (CJ Cup and Honda Classic) and fits the trend of playing well at this tournament a year ago with his T9 finish. It was Thomas' 3rd round 63 that vaulted him up the leaderboard only to be unable to sustain it come Sunday, but now he comes into the 2018 US Open with that first Major under his belt and an enormous amount of confidence that he can get the job done. The odds of +1400 aren't the greatest in terms of value, but he's really the only guy at the top of the board I'm willing to consider.

Mid-Range (+4000 to +9999)

Sergio Garcia (+4000), Bubba Watson (+4000), Matt Kuchar (+5000)

Bubba Watson is probably the riskiest, and least favorite play in this group, but it's hard to ignore his skill set for this track. Many in the golf industry have pointed to the potential of Riviera Country Club (Genesis Open) being a somewhat similar course to the new Shinnecock Hills given it's length, toughness and Poa greens. I'm not so sure I agree with that comparison 100%, but if that is indeed the case, Bubba has to be considered. He won at Riviera earlier this year (the 2nd time in his career) and his length should play well at Shinnecock. If the winds pick up it could be a problem for Bubba, and backing him at the US Open throughout his career has never done well with him having six missed cuts in 11 tries, and three of his five other finishes being T32 or higher (best finish was T5 in 2007). He also is one of those big names that didn't see the weekend at Erin Hills a year ago.

Sergio is a guy that is long, straight, finished T21 at the US Open last year, and a great candidate to break through with his 2nd major win (like Justin Thomas) this week. He's made 10 straight cuts at US Opens with three Top 10's mixed in, and even prior to that he's only missed the cut twice in 18 previous playings of this major (2006, 2007). If that's not a great example of consistency in very tough conditions that the USGA always brings, I' don't know what is. There is no more added pressure to finally break through and win a Major with Sergio anymore and teeing it up with fellow Spaniards Jon Rahm and Rafa Cabrera Bello on Thursday and Friday should bring even more comfort to Sergio's game. While the current form could be a little better, Garcia is a guy I expect to be on the first page of the leaderboard on Sunday.

Kuchar is a guy looking for his first career Major victory and US Open venues aren't exactly the first spot you'd think of him breaking through. Kuchar isn't exactly long, but he's long enough, and his “grinder” mentality of being a Top 10/20 machine should fit this event if the conditions are tough and the winning score is around Even par. He was T16 at Erin Hills a year ago so he's not working against recent history in that respect.

Longshots (+10000 and above)

Bill Haas (+20000), Trey Mullinax (+20000)

Haas is a guy that fits the Kuchar mold in terms of being a “grinder” out there on the course and one who I prefer to back at tough events when the winning score stays in the single digits. He's won at Riviera before (2012) and missed this year's edition at Riviera after being in a deadly car crash earlier that week. Coming back and winning his first Major, the national title no less, would be a “Cinderella” type story for Haas, but to get the job done he's going to need to be great with long irons and his scrambling because he's not exactly the longest off the tee (111th in driving distance). But winning scores around Even are what Haas prefers, even though he did manage to get highly involved in the birdie-fest at Erin Hills a year ago with a T5.

If you want the longest guy on Tour, Mullinax is your man, as the young Alabama grad leads the way in terms of driving distance this year. He finished T9 at last year's US Open and is coming off a T6 last week at the St Jude. Breaking through onto the scene in a similar fashion that Koepka did a year ago would befit a guy like Mullinax too.

2018 U.S. Open Odds - per Sportsbetting.ag
Dustin Johnson +900
Justin Thomas +1400
Rory McIlroy +1400
Jordan Spieth +1600
Justin Rose +1600
Rickie Fowler +1600
Tiger Woods +1600
Jason Day +1800
Brooks Koepka +2000
Jon Rahm +2200
Henrik Stenson +2500
Phil Mickelson +2500
Hideki Matsuyama +2800
Branden Grace +3300
Patrick Reed +3300
Bryson DeChambeau +4000
Bubba Watson +4000
Paul Casey +4000
Sergio Garcia +4000
Tommy Fleetwood +4000
Alex Noren +5000
Francesco Molinari +5000
Louis Oosthuizen +5000
Marc Leishman +5000
Matt Kuchar +5000
Patrick Cantlay +5000
Webb Simpson +5000
Adam Scott +6600
Byeong Hun An +6600
Tony Finau +6600
Xander Schauffele +6600
Charl Schwartzel +8000
Ian Poulter +8000
Jimmy Walker +8000
Kyle Stanley +8000
Brandt Snedeker +10000
Chesson Hadley +10000
Emiliano Grillo +10000
Gary Woodland +10000
Rafael Cabrera Bello +10000
Zach Johnson +10000
Aaron Wise +12500
Brian Harman +12500
Cameron Smith +12500
Charley Hoffman +12500
Daniel Berger +12500
Jason Dufner +12500
Kevin Kisner +12500
Kiradech Aphibarnrat +12500
Luke List +12500
Martin Kaymer +12500
Matthew Fitzpatrick +12500
Peter Uihlein +12500
Russell Henley +12500
Shane Lowry +12500
Thorbjorn Olesen +12500
Tyrrell Hatton +12500
Adam Hadwin +15000
Charles Howell III +15000
Graeme McDowell +15000
Keegan Bradley +15000
Kevin Chappell +15000
Si Woo Kim +15000
Brendan Steele +17500
Chez Reavie +17500
Bill Haas +20000
Brian Gay +20000
Haotong Li +20000
Lucas Glover +20000
Pat Perez +20000
Ross Fisher +20000
Trey Mullinax +20000
Alexander Levy +25000
Andrew Johnston +25000
Braden Thornberry +25000
Danny Willett +25000
Dean Burmester +25000
Dylan Frittelli +25000
Jhonattan Vegas +25000
Jim Furyk +25000
Matt Wallace +25000
Ollie Schniederjans +25000
Patrick Rodgers +25000
Roberto Castro +25000
Ryan Evans +25000
Ryan Fox +25000
Satoshi Kodaira +25000
Shubhankar Sharma +25000
Aaron Baddeley +35000
Matt Jones +35000
Matthew Southgate +35000
Michael Hebert +35000
Richy Werenski +35000
Russell Knox +35000
Sam Burns +35000
Scott Stallings +35000
Sebastian Munoz +35000
Steve Stricker +35000
Tyler Duncan +35000
Brian Stuard +50000
Cole Miller +50000
Doug Ghim +50000
Ernie Els +50000
Harold Varner III +50000
Lucas Herbert +50000
Scott Piercy +50000
Shintaro Ban +50000
Shota Akiyoshi +50000
Sungjae Im +50000
Ted Potter Jr. +50000
Theo Humphrey +50000
Tom Lewis +50000
Dylan Meyer +75000
Eric Axley +75000
James Morrison +75000
Lanto Griffin +75000
Matthieu Pavon +75000
Mike Miller +75000
Noah Goodwin +75000
Paul Waring +75000
Richie Ramsay +75000
Rikuya Hoshino +75000
Stewart Hagestad +75000
Calum Hill +100000
Cameron Wilson +100000
Chris Babcock +100000
Chris Naegel +100000
Chun-an Yu +100000
David Bransdon +100000
David Gazzolo +100000
Franklin Huang +100000
Garrett Rank +100000
Harry Ellis +100000
Jacob Bergeron +100000
Jason Scrivener +100000
Kenny Perry +100000
Kristoffer Reitan +100000
Luis Gagne +100000
Mackenzie Hughes +100000
Matt Parziale +100000
Michael Block +100000
Michael Putnam +100000
Mickey DeMorat +100000
Philip Barbaree +100000
Rhett Rasmussen +100000
Ryan Lumsden +100000
Scott Gregory +100000
Sebastian Vazquez +100000
Sulman Raza +100000
Sung Joon Park +100000
Tim Wilkinson +100000
Timothy Wiseman +100000
Ty Strafaci +100000
WC Liang +100000
Will Grimmer +100000
Will Zalatoris +100000
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