Wow, we have a new number one player in the world of golf and, no, his name is not Tiger Woods!
Brooks Koepka was the wire-to-wire winner of last week’s PGA Championship from the Bethpage Black Course in Long Island, New York.
The man is truly an impressive specimen as well as tactical golfer even though he almost let the previous world number one ranked player, Dustin Johnson catch him after taking a seven-stroke lead into the final round on Sunday.
The Florida State Seminole ended up finishing 2 strokes ahead of DJ for his 2nd straight PGA Championship win and his 4th victory at a major tournament in his last 8 appearances!
What a run this guy is on, and the young man hasn’t even reached his 30th birthday.
When asked, albeit a bit prematurely, about his chances at catching up with Tiger Woods and even breaking Jack Nicklaus’s all-time record for major victories, he respectfully said that “double-digit major wins for his career would be easy”.
Some maybe see this as arrogant but not me. He’s confident, and why not?
I picked him, runner-up Dustin Johnson, and Xander Schauffele to finish inside the top ten and as you know, the former two made it.
Xander finished a couple of strokes away in 16th. In obvious retrospect, he would have been a much better top 20 bet but the plus money on Brooks and DJ should have given you a good week.
Hopefully, we can keep this ball rolling towards the pin at this week’s hangover party, the Charles Schwab Classic at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas.
2018 FedEx Cup Champion Justin Rose is the defending champion while last week’s 3rd place finisher, Jordan Spieth will also be in the field with a recent victory of his own at the classic style Texas course.
Spieth is actually the favorite this week as the books believe it’s possibly the time for him to break out of his near two-year winless streak.
He’s definitely on my radar even at only 10-1 odds.
If he wants to secure the 12th victory of his PGA career, he will have to do it in moderate to high wind conditions.
Thursday looks as if it will be the worst with gusts up to 30 mph. The rest of the weekend won’t be much better as the mph’s are only dropping by 5 or 10 at the most.
Colonial Country Club is a classic style golf course with doglegs and tight tree lines.
The greens will be 100% bentgrass and the only other course we have seen thus far in 2019 with similar specs is Augusta National.
The biggest difference between these two, though, is Augusta is longer with larger greens, so it caters more to the bombers like the previously mentioned Koepka and Johnson.
Neither man will be in the field this week as you might have imagined but that doesn’t mean we are lacking star power.
Jon Rahm and Rickie Fowler are also teeing it up on Thursday and the former has a 5th place finish here last year and a runner-up placing in 2017.
The Spaniard is also one of the best performers on Tour in 2019 but does seem to get rattled a bit when his tee shots don’t land on the fairway.
Driving accuracy will be paramount this week as there isn’t much trouble you can get yourself into except for the trees that virtually hug the fairway on most of the holes.
BetOnline has the odds this week, so let’s get to the tee and pick some winners.
Jon Rahm to Finish Inside the Top Ten: +125
We could go top five here as he has been there for the past two years but let’s not get greedy. The Spanish bull’s payout would double but his mental approach isn’t as strong as some and with the steady high winds at play, I like the plus money for a top ten.
Well, other than his recent history at Colonial Country Club, he has 8 top ten performances in just 13 tournaments played this year on the PGA Tour.
The only man with more is Rory McIlroy who is a staggering 9 for 11 in that category.
Jon ranks 3rd on the Tour in shots gained off the tee and is 15th among his peers in total shots gained.
He will need to be disciplined with his work with the driver but I think he knows that and should place fairly high if not contend for the victory this week.
There are other golfers who hold more value this week, though. Let’s get to them.
Jordan Spieth to Finish Inside the Top Ten: +150
Looking at the numbers for this year, man, outside of putting well, Spieth has been absolutely atrocious.
The 11th ranked man with the flat stick is still a phenom at the age of 25. That is so hard to believe because golf fans have seen him come up as a two-time amateur player of the year on to a multiple major winner and now the 198th ranked golfer on the tour in shots gained off the tee.
He barely even cracks the top 100 in total shots gained in 2019.
He is 204th in driving accuracy and I already said that stat would be paramount so why I am picking him?
He’s talented, playing hot after a 3rd place finish behind the top two guys in the world last week at the PGA Championship and had his second best finish of the year at Augusta National when he placed 21st on a course much like this week’s Colonial.
Course history is very important as well even more so than who is hot and who is not.
Two years ago Jordan finished tied with Rahm for 2nd.
He won the thing is 2016 and was runner-up the year before that.
Put those performances together with a 14th in ‘14 and a 7th place finish in 2013 when he was still a teenager and you’re starting to see why it may the perfect time for a Jordan Spieth bet; something I didn’t think I would be saying for quite some time.
Francesco Molinari to Finish Inside the Top Ten: +200
Hey, this man’s recent performances indicate he’s swinging his clubs in the right direction, if you will.
The Italian has quietly made his way to an official world ranking of 7th.
Somehow, Molinari doesn’t have a shots gained statistical rank higher than 67th this year!
A 74 in the final round of the Masters hurt him or he could’ve been right there with Tiger.
He did win the Arnold back in March and placed 3d in the WGC event later that month but minus Augusta, it’s been a tough go ever since.
His game is Italian-suited to smash this course so a few bucks on Francesco to double your investment isn’t the worst idea.
Bryson Dechambeau to Finish Inside the Top Ten: +275
The former US Amateur and NCAA Champion is only 25 years of age but currently sits at 8th in the world in golf’s Official World Rankings.
He is 16th in shots gained off the tee and has a birdie average of 4.53 which is good enough for 6th on the PGA Tour so the stats are there and you probably know he is one of the best putters in the game.
There are a few things you probably don’t know about the Southern Methodist-grad from California.
- His “Hogan” cap named after the golf great Ben Hogan has been a staple on his dome for over a decade ever since he was a teen.
- Along with the help of his caddie, he designed and constructed his own clubs.
- His signature is written backward with his off hand.
- He rewrote his high school physics book, not necessarily for the fun of it or particularly to learn it better, although they did happen, but to save his parents 200 bucks.
So, he’s not only a highly-dedicated savant and genius but a great guy as well.
Does he deserve your hard earned cash, though?
Let’s look at some of his best performances in 2019.
He has not been in his best form lately but I attribute that more so to him playing in tournaments that don’t suit his game as well as this week’s contest at Colonial Country Club.
He is a very good all-around player with solid iron play and even better with the flat stick.
He’s also consistent with his drives ranking in the top 40 on Tour.
This should help him crack the top ten this week.
Brandt Snedeker to Finish Inside the Top Ten: +450
The 38-year-old from The Music City in central Tennessee is still in the prime of his career and is another player, like Molinari, whose game is Taylor Made, if you will, for this golf course.
The Vanderbilt-grad ranks all the way up at third on the PGA Tour in shots gained around the green, 22nd in putting, and 31st in shots gained overall.
5th at the Players and 16th last week at the PGA Championship are his best finishes in 2019.
It’s a bit of a stretch, the (+450), but I’ve seen his name thrown around by several experts too so a few bucks on the Nashville native has some value as he plays classical golf courses almost as well as any golfer on the PGA Tour.
Chez Reavie to Finish Inside the Top Ten: +550
Let’s hope either Chez or Brandt hit and you may not even need any of the favorites to break even.
Even though I listed Brandt first, I like Chez a little bit more here. He’s in good form and has been a better golfer in 2019.
Likely the most important statistical category for this tournament will be driving accuracy.
Guess who’s second on the Tour!
The man from Kansas, Chez Reavie.
He doesn’t have the power to dominate the longer courses on the tour even though he has performed well at a few of them.
Reavie started off the year hot with 3rd and 4th place finishes at the Sony and Waste Management Opens, respectively, and is coming off of three straight top 20s at the Zurich, Wells Fargo, and PGA Championships.
I like the value here especially with how his skills match up with the tournament plus he is due for a top ten performance.
I keep hearing I should fade the world’s best in the tournament following a major.
Many times, they save you the trouble and take the week off to de-stress.
Last week’s 1 and 2, Koepka and Johnson, are both doing so along with Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods.
Justin Rose will be back to defend his title and will most likely place well. I feel like there are better odds with several other golfers, though.
That’s why I went with them.
I really like the Reavie bet. He has been putting the ball better as of late and with his accuracy off the tee, he could be very dangerous this week at Colonial.
Jordan Spieth is a hometown boy and it shows with his past performances here. His odds don’t pay very well for a guy who has barely cracked the top twenty all year but after a strong outing at last week’s PGA Championship, I still like the value with him.
I don’t care if you’re still hungover from last week’s major. Tune in, turn up, and give your eyes some candy as Colonial is a beauty, especially at this time of year.