Formerly known as the Greenbrier Classic, a name change for 2018 will honor the nation’s military heroes in 4th of July week. The countdown is on for the third major of the year and while some of Europe’s best golfers start their preparation at the Irish Open, most of the US players remain stateside for now.
This event, at the Old White TPC in West Virginia, still offers a good opportunity to find form ahead of the Open Championship so let’s see if we can pick a winner with our Greenbrier predictions.
Many big names are sitting this one out after an intense period of action around the US Open so we have an unlikely favorite in the shape of Tony Finau (+1200). We know he has that power hitting drive and that could be key to success this week but does he have the all-round game to justify that position at the top of the Greenbrier Classic betting market?
Another big hitter, Bubba Watson (+1400), follows just a few points behind and, with three tournament wins to his name in 2018 already, the left hander looks to be a far more credible candidate.
Locked at the same price as Bubba is Phil Mickelson (+1600) but Lefty’s record in this event is poor and he has only made the weekend once in four attempts. A return to form at the start of 2018 has tailed off but this could be his week.
Our defending champion this week is Xander Schauffele (+2200) who starts in the middle of the chasing pack. The 24-year-old followed that success with a second Tour win in 2017 but the New Year has been less productive and he comes to West Virginia with three missed cuts in his last four attempts.
A more interesting price sits next to Webb Simpson (+1800) who is just behind the favorites and features strongly in the Power Rankings for the Greenbrier. Simpson has a solid record in this event with three Top 10s and has good stats including a tie for eighth on Tour in terms of strokes gained.
Other interesting Greenbrier odds among the chasers belong to Jimmy Walker (+3300), Russell Henley (+1800) and JB Homes (+2800) who all make strong cases this week.
It is probably time to start taking Brandt Snedeker (+5000) for Top 10 finishes again. He is a former favorite of ours in this betting market and has been solid enough since returning from injury to commit to this bet at a distant price.
The same could be said for Keegan Bradley (+5000) who looks undervalued among the outside punts. Neither man is listed in the Power Rankings for the Greenbrier and that is surprising, as are the long prices attached to both as we come into Thursday’s first tee time.
Other names that interest this Greenbrier preview from the outside pack include Kevin Kisner (+5000), Brian Gay (+5000) and also Anirban Lahiri (+5000) who sneaks into the Power Rankings. Danny Lee (+4000) may also attract interest as a former champion having won the Greenbrier Classic back in 2015.
Our Preview’s Greenbrier Classic Predictions, Betting Picks & Course Trends
This event was incepted as recently as 2010 and with the 2016 renewal having to be canceled owing to extreme flooding, there isn’t a great deal of history to use in our analysis.
In the seven editions to date, overseas wins outnumber US victories by 4-3 so we shouldn’t necessarily rule out anyone based outside of the States. We have no multiple winners to date but we have just a small set of figures to assess so that shouldn’t damage the chances of our defending champion Xander Schauffele.
We are back at the Old White TPC and having opened way back in 1914, the venue is aptly named. It is a par 70 but plays to its length of 7,286 yards and with fairways narrowed and tricky Bentgrass greens added, this can be a real test. It is played at altitude and added to the usual challenges is the threat of stormy conditions for the first three days.
Distance hitting is important but strokes gained and putting also come to the fore and when you add in some excellent current form, second favorite with the US offshore bookmakers, Bubba Watson, is an outstanding candidate.
We were tempted to pick Webb Simpson but Bubba’s experience of getting over the line in 2018 makes him our confirmed pick for victory and, added with some Top 10 options, we are aiming for a profitable four days. These are the Greenbrier predictions of this preview: