2019 Rocket Mortgage Classic Preview, Betting Odds, and Prediction
by Kent Whitaker Scores & Statson
It’s a weird week following the Travelers Championship where many of the favored players slid down the leaderboard in dramatic fashion. But, when big-name players stumble it often means that lesser known linksmen step up to shine. That’s exactly what happened when Chez Reavie gained his first PGA Tour win in over a decade and Journeyman Zack Sucher forced Keegan Bradley into a T2 finish.
Favorites, like Brooks Koepka who plunched down the leaderboard to a T57 finish this past Sunday, didn’t fair well. But, this week it’s an opportunity for the top six favored players to win the Rocket Mortgage Classic outright to rise to the top. And, the favorites include Reavie who was the surprise winner last week.
New Event Means No Past Stats or Winners to Rely on
This is the first year of the Rocket Mortgage Classic at the Detroit Golf Club in Detroit Michigan. The Classic is taking the spot of the former Quicken Loans National which was held in and around the DC area since 2007. That means, there are no past stats or past winner trends to rely on for those who like to evaluate that information when making picks!
That’s probably why the numbers heading into Thursday play so closely matches the OWGR numbers of the players entered into the event. You have to figure that the few of the top players in the world would rise to the top instead of taking a nose dive like many did last week!
The interesting thing worth pointing out is that Reavie’s win last week has made an instant impression on oddsmakers. It’s not a sure thing that he would have been favored so far up the list if more players in the top ten on the OWGR had entered the event. But, with the way the field has settled in he’s gotten some deserved recognition. Currently, he is ranked No. 26 in the world. Entering play last week he was ranked No. 48.
Predicting the Classic
As stated above, the field is loaded with ranked players and one of the top ten will probably walk away with the inaugural Rocket Mortgage Classic trophy on Sunday. Here are a few players that are coming in strong on the odds list worth watching.
Dustin Johnson is long and accurate off the tee which plays into the design of the Detroit Golf Club which was designed by Donald Ross. Johnson has been steady all season, with a few hiccups to keep things interesting, but his style of play fit’s nicely into the design of the course. If his approach/second shot game is accurate then Johnson will be hard to beat.
Rickie Fowler has had problems off the tee this season and it’s been his game’s trouble spot in 2019. But, he shows amazing flashes of talent even when things are not going his way. His second shot capability could combine with a more often than a not solid putting game to erase a few errant first shots. And, if Fowler finds the fairway consistently and the rest of his game stays intact then this could be the weekend where the five-time PGA winner collects his sixth Tour victory.
Patrick Reed comes in at +800 and also has the ability to light up a fairly traditional Ross course. He’s missed the cut a few times this season and bounced around the leaderboard only finishing in the top ten once in 2019. However, his game has either been solid with the driver and long irons one week with the short irons and putter showing up the next. With this field and a course that could fit his game perfectly, the Classic may be what Reed needs to put a win on the board in 2019.
Chez Reavie is too good of a story to pass up when selecting picks this week. It’s hard to imagine that his level of play could drop off so much in a week that he might not be a factor heading into weekend play. Reavie needs to follow up the Travelers with a solid outing in Detroit. If he does, it could signal that he’ll be a factor for several years to come.
Not so long shots include Bubba Watson, Luke List, and Aaron Wise. Any of these three players could wind up being in the hunt on Sunday. Any of them could upset the leaderboard with solid play on Thursday and Friday and moving day. Hopefully, that leads to exceptional work on Sunday.
Odds to win the 2019 Rocket Mortgage Classic Outright