OAD: 119th United States Open

The world’s most iconic players on America’s most iconic course.

Fitting for a national championship decider!

With a monster prize pool on the line, including $2.25 million to the winner, it’s time for a big pick to cash in!

One and Done

Each week I’ll throw in my thoughts on the field and those to back and avoid in this wonderful format.

This Year:

Event Golfer Place $$
Safeway Open Brendan Steele T53 14,610
CIMB Classic Ryan Moore T66 12,740
CJ CUP @ 9 BRIDGES Gary Woodland 2nd 1,026,000
WGC-HSBC Champions Ian Poulter 21st 93,500
Sanderson Farms Cameron Davis MC 0
Shriners Aaron Wise T15 101,675
Mayakoba Golf Classic Charles Howell III MC 0
The RSM Classic J.J. Spaun MC 0
Sentry TOC Jon Rahm T8 191,000
Sony Open Marc Leishman T3 307,200
60th Desert Classic Andrew Putnam T34 29,975
Farmers Insurance Patrick Cantlay MC 0
WMPO Hideki Matsuyama T15 113,600
AT&T Pebble Beach Jason Day T4 334,400
Genesis Open Justin Thomas 2nd 799,200
WGC-Mexico Champ Xander Schauffele T14 128,000
Puerto Rico Open Graeme McDowell T42 10,500
The Honda Classic Adam Scott MC 0
Arnold Palmer Invitational Rickie Fowler T40 35,490
THE PLAYERS Championship Sergio Garcia T22 125,000
Valspar Championship Patrick Reed MC 0
Corales Punta Cana Trey Mullinax T61 6,450
WGC-Match Play Paul Casey T9 167,000
Valero Texas Open Billy Horschel MC 0
Masters Rory McIlroy T21 107,956
RBC Heritage Matt Kuchar 2nd 745,200
Zurich Classic Ryan Palmer WIN 1,051,200
Wells Fargo Championship Phil Mickelson MC 0
AT&T Byron Nelson Keith Mitchell T59 17,301
PGA Championship Brooks Koepka WIN 1,980,000
Charles Schwab Challenge Jordan Spieth T8 197,100
Memorial Tony Finau MC 0
RBC Canadian Open Jim Furyk T27 55,100
Total Events: 33 Top 10s: 10 MC: 9 $7,650,197

Last Week – RBC Canadian Open

Rory McIlroy won by seven shots and I’m not sure anyone saw that coming. A top finish, yeah, definitely not out of the question, but a romp that included a closing 61 with two bogeys was spectacular.

In my man Spotter’s league, we have a ton of people playing.

Zero selected McIlroy.

My Choice: Jim Furyk – T27

Never fired and I paid the price. I went hyper-conservative and it back-fired.

Safety Dancing:

Scott Piercy – MC

Welp. I’m glad I left him alone but I know plenty of other who didn’t. A stretch of seven years between “defending” probably didn’t help and neither did missing the cut by four shots.

Dustin Johnson – T20

Never could get all the pistons firing as one but he probably had one eye on this week anyhow.

Matt Kuchar – T4

Well done for those of you who had not burned the two-time winner already this season. Those of you who went this route at Memorial are allowed to be furious!


Picks that should click but have more element of risk

Shane Lowry – T2

Continued his hot streak as he tied for the B Flight title with Webb Simpson.

Brandt Snedeker – T4

Set the course record in Round 2 with 60 but ran out of gas on the weekend as the McIlroy Machine rolled over the field.

Picks for Dreamers:

Breakout performance from this group will get gamers back into contention

Any Canadian – Adam Hadwin was solo sixth as he took home low honors. Mackenzie Hughes spent most of the week in the top 20 before a birdie-less final round saw him cash T14.

Bud Cauley – Another “course form meets current form” disaster.

Nick Watney – Swung, missed.

Picks for Noses:

Save them for another time. Each week I usually have a couple of these hit the top 10 so BUYER BEWARE!

Brooks Koepka – T50

His record in majors made this an obvious fade in this format.

Six Beers In: 

Lucas Bjerregaard – MC, Sergio Garcia – MC, Joaquin Niemann – T31


This Week – U.S. Open

If you like to read about trends, stats and the players I have rated, I have you covered in The Confidence Factor Preview.

Read more in Horses for Courses here.

Big tournaments require big decision making.

Pebble Beach will have the traditional U.S. Open rough off the fairways and greens plus the tiny targets of Pebble Beach greens to aim at.

This is not golf for the faint of heart!

And neither is this decision!

There are plenty of choices that make sense this week and in the grand scheme of things.

With the weather appearing to be perfect and precipitation slim or none throughout the week, I’m going with the toughest of the bunch.

My Choice: Tiger Woods

Healthy and rested, he returns to the scene of the biggest margin of victory in the history of major championships.  The course obviously rates highly with him and he knows how to navigate it in the toughest of conditions.

Royal Portrush doesn’t provide any strategic advantage and neither does any tournament between now and East Lake for The Large Cat so I’m down.

Power Plays:

Dustin Johnson: The good news is I’ll have him for anything else I choose down the road while the rest of society fires him this week. I don’t blame them and am terribly afraid

Brooks Koepka: Head says history is history for a reason. Heart says I’d love to see it and how he pulls it off. He will have more challengers this time because Pebble Beach isn’t the unknown quantity like Erin Hills or the once-in-a-while Shinnecock Hills. He’s only played one Pro-Am, T8 in 2016.

Patrick Cantlay: All the stars are aligned as he romped to a bogey-free 64 at Memorial his last time out. He led on the back nine at Augusta on Sunday and was T3 at the PGA Championship.


Picks that should click but have more element of risk

Shane Lowry: Form is fire and he’s not new to coastal links golf.

Brandt Snedeker: I’m not changing the top two from last week. Not when Sneds has two wins and a T4 in his last seven trips plus T8 in 2010.

Jordan Spieth/Jason Day: The short game angle is my angle. Plus both have plenty of past successes here.

Rickie Fowler: His complete bag is always the draw and so is his recent record in majors, minus the win. Closing the first one is always the toughest and three of these five will have to deal with that possibility on Sunday.

Picks for Dreamers:

Breakout performance from this group will get gamers back into contention

Phil Mickelson: The career grand slam is very real after his win here in February. His form is terrifying as is his frustration with the USGA.

Justin Thomas: Only one previous visit and just his third tournament after a wrist deal.

Webb Simpson: Golf tournaments are hard to win. Majors are even more difficult, especially a second U.S. Open. He’ll be unnoticed for most of the week as Brooks, Tiger and Phil will carry the headlines. Just as he prefers.

Picks for Noses:

Save them for another time. Each week I usually have a couple of these hit the top 10 so BUYER BEWARE!

Rory McIlroy: Wouldn’t Royal Portrush make more sense? Nobody has won the week before the U.S. Open and then gone on to claim our national championship. Context is very important.

Matt Kuchar: This isn’t the major or course for this format.

Six Beers In: 

C.T. Pan, Branden Grace, Billy Horschel, Scottie Scheffler


History Channeled:

2017-18 Thermometer: FINAL

Event Golfer Place $$
Safeway Open Tony Finau 2nd 669,600
CIMB Classic Paul Casey T7 218,166
CJ CUP @ 9 BRIDGES Keegan Bradley T47 23,759
WGC-HSBC Champions Hideki Matsuyama T50 51,875
Sanderson Farms Chesson Hadley T2 464,400
Shriners Patrick Cantlay WIN 1,224,000
OHL Classic Kevin Chappell MC 0
The RSM Classic Charles Howell III MC 0
Sentry TOC Kevin Kisner T17 99,333
Sony Open Brian Harman T4 256,266
CareerBuilder Challenge Jason Dufner T36 27,189
Farmers Insurance Jon Rahm T29 43,872
WMPO Alex Noren T21 80,040
-AT&T Pebble Beach Phil Mickelson T2 488,400
Genesis Open Dustin Johnson T16 111,600
Honda Classic Graeme McDowell MC 0
WGC-Mexico Tommy Fleetwood T14 126,500
Valspar Championship Ryan Moore MC 0
Arnold Palmer Tyrell Hatton T69 18,067
WGC-Match Play Patrick Reed T9 163,000
Corales Puntacana Patrick Rodgers T22 27,850
Houston Open Luke List T24 54,162
Masters Jordan Spieth 3rd 748,000
RBC Heritage Cameron Smith T32 35,510
Valero Texas Open Billy Horschel T11 136,400
Zurich Classic Bud Cauley MC 0
Wells Fargo Championship Bryson DeChambeau 4th 369,600


THE PLAYERS Francesco Molinari MC 0
Ft. Worth Invitational Adam Scott T52 16,472
AT&T Byron Nelson Jimmy Walker T6 257,950
Memorial Tiger Woods T23 76,985
FESJC Henrik Stenson T26 50,820
US Open Justin Rose T10 270,151
FESJC Xander Schauffele MC 0
Quicken Loans National Kyle Stanley T32 36,841
A Military Tribute Bubba Watson T13 121,632
John Deere Classic Zach Johnson T16 81,366
British Open Rory McIlroy T2 694,250
RBC Canadian Open Charley Hoffman T29 37,743
Barracuda Martin Laird T15 51,000
WGC-Bridgestone Invite Rickie Fowler T17 104,250
PGA Championship Brooks Koepka WIN 1,980,000
Wyndham Brandt Snedeker WIN 1,080,000
THE NORTHERN TRUST Jason Day T20 101,160
Dell Technologies Marc Leishman T21 100,800
BMW Championship Gary Woodland T12 189,000
TOUR Championship Justin Thomas T7 279,900
Total Events: 47


Top 10s: 15 MC: 7 $10,967,909


2015-16 Season total: $5,978,929; 47 events

  • Wins: 2 (Matsuyama, Hoffman)
  • Seconds: 0
  • Thirds: 1
  • Top 10s: 9
  • Top 25s: 18
  • MC: 8 (Mickelson, FIO; Oosthuizen, SHO; Chappell, Colonial; Casey, Memorial; Woodland, FESJC; Hearn, RBC Canadian; McGirt, Wyndham; Justin Thomas, DBC)

2016-17 Season total: $6,533,509 45 events

  • Wins: 1
  • Seconds: 1
  • Thirds: 1
  • Top 10s: 12
  • Top 25s: 20
  • MCs (10): Grayson Murray (Safeway Open); Patton Kizzire (SFC); Jamie Lovemark (CB Challenge); Jimmy Walker (FIO); Charl Schwartzel (Genesis); Russell Knox (Honda); Henrik Stenson (API); Thomas Pieters (Zurich); Kevin Kisner (WFC).

Thanks for reading!



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