Welcome to the British Open, home of wind, rain, whiskey, wind, and rain…and whiskey.
Before we get too involved with the Open, let’s send out some congrats to Steve Stricker on his unbelievable victory at last week’s John Deere Classic. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Paul Goydos and his truly majestic 59 he shot on Thursday. This feat has only been accomplished three times previous, and Stricker almost holed out his approach shot on the 18th to match him.
Trust me, you won’t be seeing any scores remotely close to that this week. My prediction is seven under will take the prize this year.
There is a huge cast of characters to choose from this year, and trust me if you are gambling this week, the values are off the hook.
There are many Euros that are heavily favored this week, such as Lee Westwood 18:1, Rory McIlroy 14:1, and Padraig Harrington 20:1. I think McIlroy is a great pick, but he is way off as far as his odds are concerned. I am expressing my disappointment as I really wanted to pick him in the 40:1 area.
Before I get more distracted than I already am, let’s go over Yahoo Fantasy real quick. I currently have 3828 points on the season. I gained three points in my FOHM group to get into the 70th percentile. I have also popped up two points overall to the 77th percentile. I currently am leading only one Yahoo expert, Michael Arkush by 83 points. I trail the other three in this manner; Eric Planer by two points, Greg Vara by 49 points, Matt Romig by 195 points.
Here is this weeks official lineup:
Start Ernie Els
Sit Tiger Woods
Start Lee Westwood and Padraig Harrington
Sit Jim Furyk and Retief Goosen
Start Justin Rose
Sit Graeme McDowell
Before we get into the official six pack, let’s give you some very honorable mentions: McDowell 30:1, Goosen 50:1, Cabrera 80:1, Van Pelt 150:1, Singh 100:1, and Kuchar 125:1
When you think of golfers that are red hot coming into a major, this guy has to top your list. Rose has made 12 out of 15 cuts this year. He has eight top 25 victories this year, four of which are in the top ten. Rose has really come into his own this year earning a third place finish and two victories, both of which have which have occurred in his last five starts.
Out of all of the Euros, I have to select Justin Rose as my favorite, or should I say favorite golfer this week? In Justin’s last five events he has finished Cut, 71st, first, ninth, and first respectively. I love the fact that he has been a contender several times at The Open. This coupled with his recent success should translate directly into more success.
Look at his numbers:
- Second in Scoring Average at 69.65 strokes per round
- Seventh in All Around ranking
- 13th in Total Driving (combo of distance and accuracy)
- Fifth in Par Four Performance at -18 strokes
At 20:1 odds Justin Rose is my clear cut favorite to win the British Open.
When I think of golfers that are poised to win a major, Jim Furyk is in the front of my mind.
So far in 2010 he has made 12 out of 14 cuts. He has eight top 25 finishes, four of which were top ten finishes and two of those were long overdue victories.
Furyk has fared well over the pond in this major. He has made five top ten finishes in 14 attempts. I like his recent play also. He had some struggles with a 4th followed by a cut, but now is trending back up with a tenth, 16th and 33rd in his last five tries.
Look at some of Jimmy’s numbers:
- Seventh in Driving Accuracy at 70.61 percent
- 12th in Scoring average at 70 strokes per round
- 12th in Scrambling in 64.26 percent
At 40:1 odds, I absolutely love the value associated with Jim Furyk.
Let’s talk about a world class player who is overdue and on the cusp of his next breakout…
Sean has made 13 out of 16 cuts this year. He has made nine top 25 finishes, yet he has only notched one top ten this year. Talk about a world class player that is overdue to show up!
At The Open, Sean has never missed the cut. He also has two finishes in the top 25. In his last five events he has been on fire. He has finished 12th, cut, 12th, 12th, and 11th. This guy tends to bring it in big time events, so bet with confidence on this man this week.
Look at some of Sean’s numbers:
- 32nd in Scoring Average at 70.41 strokes per round
- 19th in Scrambling at 63.64 percent
He may look like somewhat of a statistic anomaly, but guess what? Sean O’ Hair is a quality man to bet on and at an astonishing 90:1, he is value personified!
Jeff Overton has made 11 out of 18 cuts this year. He has made seven top 25 finishes, four of those were top ten’s and two of those were third and second place finishes.
In his last five efforts he has finished very surprisingly at second, third, 12th, CUT and third. These are some amazing numbers people! Last year this guy finished a very respectable 13th at the British Open. Can he withstand the pressures of St. Andrews?
Look at his stats:
- 19th in Driving Distance at 293.4 yards
- 18th in All Around Ranking
- Third in Par Three Performance at minus five strokes
- First in front nine scoring average at 34.54 strokes
If you are going to give me Jeff Overton at 125:1 (31.25:1 for a top five finish) then please show me where I place my money stack down!
Okay y’all know the drill…
Rickie Fowler stays until he wins. How cool would a victory at The British Open Be?
Young Rickie has made 11 out of 19 cuts do far this year. Six of those have been top 25 finishes, of which five have been top ten’s including two runner up finishes.
Here is a quick synopsis of his digits:
- Sixth in GIR at 69.98 percent
- Second in Ball Striking
- 13th in Total Driving
Even with his recent back to back cuts, you’d have to be crazy not to take Fowler in ANY event for the rest of the year. I am all over him at 150:1!
When you look at people who are in this event and are packed chock full of value, you need not look further than Davis Love III.
DL3 has made eight out of 15 cuts so far this year. That may sound bad, but five of those have been in the top 25. Three of those top 25 finishes have been in the top ten. This guy has an impeccable track record at the British Open, and more than Tom Watson, John Daly or David Duval, is my top pick of the “older guys” to show up and get it done.
Look at these numbers:
- 12th in driving distance at 296.2 yards
- Seventh in Total Driving
- 27th in Ball Striking
- 18th in Eagles made with seven on the year
Think about Davis Love III as the “next Tom Watson / Greg Norman story” at an unreal 200:1 odds!
No matter whom you like this week, just remember to hit it straight and to have some fun!