For those who missed it, please check out The Memorial Preview and Betting Strategies column for the types of golfers you should look to target for your bets.
With that in mind, here’s who I like this week at Muirfield Village (with odds courtesy of MyBookie.ag).
Champions Futures (with Top 10 Prop Odds)
Rory McIlroy – 14/1 (+160): He’s been pretty flat since the PGA Tour restart, especially for his standards. While he hasn’t missed a cut he hasn’t been very sharp with his irons as he’s lost 0.06 strokes with them in his last three tournaments. That’s almost 0.7 strokes per round worse than his average since the beginning of the year. He’s being overshadowed this week by guys like Bryson DeChambeau, Patrick Cantlay and Justin Thomas, and like the aforementioned Justin Thomas last week it feels like a get right week for Rory.
Jon Rahm – 22/1 (+225): Has Jon Rahm broken out of his ball-striking slump? Last week at the Workday was his best performance with his irons since the return of the PGA Tour, where gained just over a shot per round with them on the field. His putting, which had carried him early in the year to good finishes, continues to cost him. Should that return and he can maintain the momentum tee-to-green that he found last week, he should be right in the mix for a win. He’s long overdue for a win on the PGA Tour, and the pieces might be starting to come together for him.
Xander Schauffele – 28/1 (+275): I’m putting money on Xander with a smidge of hesitation. While he had a fantastic week with his irons at the Workday, he gained a vast majority of his strokes on the field with his putting. He’s been putting out of his mind since the PGA Tour returned to action, far outpacing his performances from early in the year. There’s some concern that might regress, but if it doesn’t and he’s a little better off the tee he could be in for a long overdue win.
Webb Simpson – 28/1 (+275): Webb doesn’t have a great history at Memorial, but he hasn’t played this golf course since 2017. He’s a much improved and refined player tee-to-green since that time, and his game right now is a great fit for Muirfield Village. He’s even improved off the tee, gaining some length on his drives while still maintaining the accuracy that he’s known for. Webb’s definitely in line for his second win in three starts.
Others to Consider (with Top 20 Prop Odds)
Abraham Ancer – 50/1 (+220): Ancer took a few weeks off but his ball striking is red hot, especially with his irons. Ancer is a fairly accurate driver off the tee and despite his short stature he’s longer than you would think. He’s a nice sleeper to win the tournament for his first PGA Tour win.
Joaquin Niemann – 70/1 (+225): Niemann sometimes is a forgotten man among all the young talent on the PGA Tour, but at his best he’s just as good of a ball striker as the likes of Collin Morikawa or Viktor Hovland. Niemann had a great week tee-to-green last week at the Workday, only for his putter to cost him. A regression to the mean in that category should put him in the mix like he was at the RBC Heritage.
Lucas Glover – 125/1 (+500): With such a strong field, it’s unlikely we’ll get a super deep longshot winning this week. But if there’s a guy who can pull the upset it’s Lucas Glover, who’s ball striking has been on point since the PGA Tour returned. Glover has sniffed around the Top 20 in all four tournaments he’s played since returning to action, only for his putting to cost him. With ball striking at such a premium this week, any sort of magic he can find on the greens would mean big things for his prospects.
Other Positional Props
Patrick Cantlay Top 10 (+160): While the results indicate a Top 10 for Patrick Cantlay last week, he was relatively anonymous most of the weekend at the Workday. Only a final round 65 was the reason why he vaulted up the leaderboard for a Top 10 finish. Everything seems to be in order for Cantlay to defend his title, but he’s such a trendy pick this week and I can’t help but wonder why he doesn’t win more? For a player as consistent as him, he should be winning tournaments at a higher clip. In any event, while I don’t like the 16/1 odds he has to win the tournament, I do feel he’s a safe bet for another Top 10 finish.
Justin Rose Top 20 (+225): This is put up or shut up week for Justin Rose, and I think we’re about to find out what his trajectory the rest of this season is. Has his club change back to TaylorMade really helped? Or is he truly in a funk or possibly on the downside of his career. I’m about done putting a futures bet on him to win, but I don’t think he’s as bad as what he showed last week. Justin Rose gets a stay of execution with my wallet, and I have a hunch he rebounds for a Top 20 finish at one of his strongest golf courses.
Other Top 20 Props to Consider: Tiger Woods (+120), Marc Leishman (+275), Paul Casey (+300), Harris English (+400), Doc Redman (+400), Corey Conners (+500), Harold Varner III (+600), Max Homa (+700), Nick Taylor (+800)
Missed Cut Props
Patrick Reed Missed Cut – +250: Patrick Reed seems like a trendy pick at 50/1 to win this tournament, but I have a nagging feeling he’ll fall short of expectations. He’s really struggling with both his ball striking and putting at the moment, and his T39 finish last week was all thanks to his scrambling as he gained over 4 shots on the field. That’s not a recipe for sustained success, and I think he misses the weekend.
Other Missed Cuts to Consider – Ian Poulter (+200), Billy Horschel (+220), Kevin Kisner (+170), Jason Day (+160), Danny Willett (+140), Matt Wallace (+120)
Adam Hadwin over Ian Poulter (-110): Both tend to make their hay on the PGA Tour with their putting, but Hadwin’s ball striking has been a little bit better than Poulter’s over the last few weeks. In addition, Poulter gained just under nine shots on the field putting at the Workday, a clip that is begging to regress. Hadwin should beat Poulter head to head.
Joaquin Niemann +1.5 Strokes over Matthew Fitzpatrick (-130): I don’t understand this line at all. Both finished T31 last week, but did it in completely different fashions. As mentioned above, Niemann’s putting cost him a good ball striking week, while Fitzpatrick lost strokes off the tee and with his irons but was bailed out by his scrambling and putting. Niemann is primed for the positive regression, while Fitzpatrick is primed for negative regression. Niemann should be able to cover the 1.5 strokes.