PGA Odds For The Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village
Unless you bet Kevin Na at the Charles Schwab Challenge you probably spent part of your Sunday looking ahead to The Memorial Tournament. Household names like Rickie Fowler, Jon Rahm, Bryson DeChambeau and Xander Schauffele all had the weekend off after missing the cut. If you tuned out for the final round you missed a great moment when Na gifted the 1973 Dodge Challenger that was awarded to the winner, to his caddy Kenny Harms.
Na started the final round with a two shot lead but a 3-under 32 on the front 9 effectively put the tournament out of reach for the chasers. Exceptional ball striking was the name of the game again this week with Na leading the field in strokes gained approach, and checking in at second overall in strokes gained tee-to-green. A hot putter certainly didn’t hurt his cause either as he was second in strokes gained putting as well. He will once again be a name to keep an eye on this week in Ohio, where iron play is imperative to success at Muirfield Village.
With the US Open now just 2 weeks away some players will make The Memorial Tournament their last stop before heading West to Pebble Beach. If you’re looking for PGA golf betting tips, I’ve got a breakdown of the course and the PGA odds for The 2019 Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village:
A Nicklaus designed Muirfield Village in Dublin, Ohio hosted by none other than Jack Nicklaus is the PGA tour stop this week. A shuffling of the tour schedule that brought the PGA Championship to May this year has changed the schedules of a lot of players, but Jack’s milkshakes always bring the boys to the yard:
The famous milkshakes, only available to the players, are a long running favorite on tour.
The course itself plays to a Par 72 at 7392 yds with 4 par 5s. The longest of the par 5s is the 11th measuring only 567 yards. All 4 par 5s should be reachable with a good drive by the entire field. After adding in 4 par 3s of 180-200 yards and 6 par 4s over 450 yards you can see a trend emerging. Lots of precise mid-iron shots are required to claim the winners share of the 9.1 million dollar prize pool. Over the last 5 years, -14.2 is the average winning score, so when you’re looking for a winner you’re going to need a player who makes his fair share of birdies.
With its status as an Invitational, The Memorial Tournament field consists of only 120 players. Stringent guidelines for who is eligible to play creates a strong field on an annual basis. As of this writing, Louis Oosthuizen and Pat Perez are listed in the field despite withdrawing last week at the Charles Schwab Challenge, and Justin Thomas is also listed and expected to compete even though he hasn’t played since The Masters. The first two alternates – Kelly Kraft and Tom Hoge – have a reasonable chance at getting into the field.
The Favorites at the 2019 Memorial Tournament
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In the 2018 tournament, Bryson DeChambeau won a 3-man playoff with Byeong Hun-An and Kyle Stanley after they all finished at 15 under par. A star studded top 10 included Patrick Cantlay in 4th, Justin Rose T6 and Justin Thomas, Rickie Fowler, Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy all T8. This time around the top of the field won’t be quite as strong, with Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler both skipping the event.
Tiger Woods (+1000) missed the cut at the US Open after he turned back the clock at The Masters for his first major championship victory since 2008. His past success at this event is certainly enticing with 5 wins to his name. The general description of the course and what it takes to succeed – generous fairways, lots of mid to long iron approaches, difficult to save par if you miss the greens – also fits Tiger well. As his final tune up for the US Open at Pebble Beach, Tiger is a reasonable bet at this price, and he’s not lacking confidence right now either!
Justin Rose (+1700) entered the event in 2018 in great form coming off a win at the Charles Schwab Challenge. This year it will be his third week in a row after a T29 at the PGA championship and a disappointing title defence at the Charles Schwab Challenge, where he finished T58 and struggled from tee to green. Major championships carry their own set of pressures and responsibilities, and defending a championship also is exhausting in its own way with requests from sponsors. It might be a good week to stay away from Rose at his short price of only +1700.
Jordan Spieth (+2100) has been the talk of golf Twitter over the past couple of weeks, namely his hot putting and its sustainability. Another week of red-hot putting and terrible ball-striking at Colonial has predictably changed nobody’s mind. You either think he has some God-given ability to make twice as many 40ft putts as everybody else or you believe in math. I am on the side of his putting cooling off and his ball-striking making for a miserable week for him at Muirfield.
The Mid Tier
Bryson Dechambeau (+3600) was 6th in the Charles Schwab field in strokes gained approach despite missing the cut. He was also near the bottom of the field in strokes gained driving with -4.2 across the two rounds he played. Driving it into penalty areas on #5 and #12 on Thursday made up the majority of his strokes lost to the field, which could make his poor performance a bit deceiving. A weekend off to hit a few thousand balls and a return to Muirfield Village could prove to be a winning combination for the defending champion.
Marc Leishman (+8000) is an example of a player who could play well here given his strengths, but his recent performance leaves a lot to be desired. He hasn’t had a top 20 finish in a full field event since his T4 at the Genisis open in February, but that was also preceded by 4 other top 5s including a win. He will be a threat this week if he shows any of the skills that helped him to 15th SG approach, 4th GIR% from 175-200y yards and 3rd in proximity from 175-200yds.
Two other well known ball-strikers I would give some consideration to are Gary Woodland (+3700) and Henrik Stenson (+5000).
Corey Conners (+12000) leads the tour in GIR% from 175-200 yards. The rest of the top 5 is Justin Rose, Rory McIlroy, Marc Leishman and Brooks Koepka. He is also 6th on tour in proximity from that same distance. His tee-to-green game is also 9th on the PGA tour in 2019. He is typically not a great putter but has rolled it well enough to have a win and a T3 already this year. Sungjae Im at +10000 also looks worth a dart to my eye.
Once again, if you’re looking general golf betting tips, please refer to our PGA golf betting guide.
(Top Photo: Joseph Maiorana/USA TODAY Sports)