2019 US Open Preview, Betting Odds, and Prediction
by Kent Whitaker Scores & Statson
The US Open, officially called the United States Open Championship, is heading to Pebble Beach with more fanfare than usual because of one name – Tiger Woods. The famed golfer has three US Open Championships under his belt and he’s proven that he can win again after his Master’s victory in August this spring. However, Tiger’s not at the top of the favorites list. That honor is held by Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy.
The two players come into the opening round on Thursday both at +800 while Woods comes in at +1100 following a week where the former Clemson player took some time off. While Tiger was resting, McIlroy put on a clinic last week to claim the Canadian Open Championship by winning with a seven-stroke lead. Johnson, who is ranked No. 2 on the Official World Golf Rankings ended the Canadian Open a disappointing T20 with six other players.
When you look at the favored players, coming in at +1800 and under according to intertops, things look wide open. In fact, the field is packed with wide-open possibilities. But that’s the norm for any US Open. Here are the favored players to win outright by Intertops.
All six players listed above can come to Pebble Beach and win the US Open including Brooks Koepka at +850. Koepka, with a win this Sunday, would tie Woods by winning his third Open Championship. The only difference is that Koepka has won the last two US Open in a row. Winning a third in three consecutive years would make history and seal Koepka’s status as a great player… as if there were any questions on that topic.
Past Winners List May be Telling
There may be a “tell” showing up in the past winners list if you factor that into your picks. The past winner's list is eye-opening for several reasons. First, the fact that Koepka has back-to-back wins makes him an automatic pick when it comes to favorites. But, the list also includes Johnson, Spieth, and McIlroy which means that four of the players listed above at +1800 or below are former US Open Champions.
Now, expand that observation to include players that have come in second over the past ten years. The list is impressive – and packed with players ranked high on the odds list. It includes players such as Tommy Fleetwood and Hideki Matsuyama as well as Rickie Fowler, Jason Day, and Phil Mickelson as well as other. According to the complete odds list, located at the end of this article, the odds are in favor of a former winner or runner up to win the Open in 2019.
1 stroke over Tommy Fleetwood
4 strokes over Hideki Matsuyama, Brian Harman
3 strokes over Jim Furyk, Shane Lowry, Scott Piercy
1 stroke over Dustin Johnson, Louis Oosthuizen
8 strokes over Erik Compton, Rickie Fowler
2 strokes over Jason Day, Phil Mickelson
1 stroke over Graeme McDowell, Michael Thompson
8 strokes over Jason Day
1 stroke over Grégory Havret
2 strokes over Ricky Barnes, David Duval, Phil Mickelson
Predicting Pebble Beach
The US Open returns to Pebble Beach for the first time since 2010 when Graeme McDowell took home the Championship. Since then, the open has been played at eight different courses with completely different course designs, So, long story short, there’s no real way to predict how the Open will play out when comparing to last years course. But, you can look at how players have faired at Pebble Beach!
First, note that the Pebble Beach Pro-Am is played over three different courses – but there are still some things that stand out. The first is that Phil Mickelson has won at Pebble Beach five times with two finishes in second place. Currently, the lefty is coming in well behind the favorites at +5000. But, Mickelson knows how to play the kind of golf that this course requires so don’t be surprised if he’s a factor on Sunday.
Also, Pebble Beach is known for not being a course that favors bombers off the tee. The greens are smaller and demand great play when it comes to second shots and approaching the green. Tiger Woods is one of those players who can attack tiny greens but so is Koepka! Tiger will probably have a great run in the Open this year but it’s hard to see him pulling out a second Major in 2019.
Look for the 2019 US Open winner to make full use of mid and short irons as that’s what pebble beach demands. As said above, the field is wide open which is why there are so many players filling the list at +8000 and under. Johnson, Koepka, Woods, and McIlroy will be factors but this could be a Sunday where a player like Justin Thomas, Rickie Fowler, or even the “Lefty” Phil Mickelson can win.