Many of America’s finest golfers struggled to come to terms with the blustery conditions at last week’s Open Championship so they may be grateful to return home. The name may not suggest a comfortable four days, but TPC Southwind should provide a more benign backdrop for the newly-named St Jude Invitational.
There are plenty of challengers from outside of the US this week so let’s see take a look at a strong field for the 2019 edition of this historic event.
Dustin Johnson is the defending champion and a two-time winner of this event so that record helps DJ to earn a narrow lead at the top of the St Jude Invitational outright betting markets at +900 (9/1) with Bovada.
Johnson’s form doesn’t necessarily back up his standing but it is his record at TPC Southwind that has him leading the pack. He is number two in all-time earnings here and has a scoring average of 67.75 from his last 20 rounds.
Alongside Johnson are Rory McIlroy (+900) and Brooks Koepka (+1000 or 10/1). Koepka remained in distant contention at The Open and handled a testing final day in an impressive manner. Brooks was a runner up to Daniel Berger in 2016 and is definitely a live contender this week.
McIlroy endured two very contrasting rounds at Royal Portrush last week. Despite a first day blip, Rory still leads the Tour in relevant stats including Strokes Gained: Tee to Green.
In a tight betting market, Jon Rahm (12/1) follows in what has been another successful season for the popular Spaniard. He has finished no worse than 11th in his last four outings and is another golfer in with a genuine shout in Memphis.
It remains close in the betting with Justin Thomas (14/1), Justin Rose (22/1) and Patrick Cantlay (20/1) all within a few points of the favorites. Then we come to Tommy Fleetwood (22/1), who was solid last week in familiar conditions before finishing a distant second behind Shane Lowry, and Xander Schauffele (also 22/1). Of those just mentioned, Schauffele places highest in the Power Rankings while Thomas is hitting form and putting any injury doubts behind him.
Before we get to the higher odds, bettors may also want to consider Jordan Spieth (33/1) who occasionally threatened to break his two-year trophy drought in Northern Ireland.
There is plenty of value down the pack this week: In places, the market has reacted negatively to results from the Open but, with certain players returning to more familiar conditions, we could see a big-priced winner of the St Jude.
Players to consider from the longshots include Patrick Reed, Paul Casey, Tony Finau, Matt Kuchar, Jason Day, Webb Simpson and many more. Some of our own favorites are in here including Brandt Snedeker and Gary Woodland while a strong English contingent includes Ian Poulter, Matt Wallace, Eddie Pepperell and Matt Fitzpatrick.
Keegan Bradley, JB Holmes and Kevin Na will also attract interest. Clearly this is a strong field and a tough call awaits so just what will it take to win this week and who will be our St Jude Invitational predictions against the American oddssetters?
Our Preview’s St Jude Invitational Course & Betting Trends with Picks & Predictions Conclusion
The St Jude Invitational has been through a number of name changes but it first appeared as the Memphis Open in 1958. TPC Southwind has played host since 1989 and, as an invitational event, it tends to carry a stronger field than most tournaments that follow a Major.
As for the course itself, it is a par 70 but a relatively lengthy one at 7,244 yards and there can be some advantage for distance hitters in places. Fairways will be narrow so accuracy is also critical but it is the second shot that is likely to separate this field. Scoring should be low: The average in 2018 was 70.52 and similar should be expected this year.
Any event that follows a Major is tougher to pick and we could well see a number of players suffering an Open ‘hangover’. Others will be happy to get away from Links Golf and onto an inland venue and one of the names we keep coming back to is that of Xander Schauffele.
He is second in the Power Rankings this week with exceptional, relevant stats and, therefore, his mid-range price could offer superb value as a St Jude Invitational betting prediction.
So our pick for this preview is Xander for the win. Adding in these top 10 finish tips will hopefully lead to a profitable four days in Memphis for USAbetting readers: