The action on golf’s PGA Tour has been intensifying in the last few weeks with strong fields at big events and it has all been building to the second Major of 2018. The US Open starts this Thursday at Shinnecock Hills on New York City’s Long Island and naturally, the world’s best players are all here.
Brooks Koepka is the defending champion while Dustin Johnson is the most recent winner on Tour, having won the St Jude Classic by a big margin and DJ now features at the top of this week’s US Open odds market with the online betting sites for Americans.
The margin of Johnson’s victory, by six shots, from the field, has seen the 2016 US Open Champion shorten and earn a clear lead at the head of the outright win betting this week. He is generally +800 with the likes of Bovada, but is longest at +986 with Bookmaker. DJ had started the new season strongly but, after a dip in form, he seemed to be inspired by the loss of his number one world ranking a week earlier.
Johnson has plenty of relevant stats and only history seems to be against him as no US Open winner has ever taken the trophy on the back of victory in the previous week’s tournament.
Behind Johnson, it is exceptionally tight with up to four golfers on offer at similar win odds from around the sportsbooks. Rory McIlroy, Justin Thomas, Justin Rose and Jason Day are all closely matched (+1400 to +1600) and all have found some form in the first half of 2018. McIlroy and Rose are both former champions while Day has two runners up finishes in the US Open and the pundits tend to favor the Australian who has five Top 10 finishes in seven starts.
Jordan Spieth (longest at +2257 with Bookmaker) is also a former US Open winner but his putting has deserted the 2015 champion since a third place at the Masters in April. No Top 20s in his last five outings mean we will be avoiding Spieth this week.
Of more interest is the man who leads the Power Rankings. Jon Rahm (+2200) is heading into mid-price range but the Spaniard is getting plenty of support as the longest hitter on Tour and a player who also ranks highly in GIR and birdies-or-better.
At a slightly shorter price than Rahm is Rickie Fowler (best +1800 at Bovada or Intertops) who was a US Open runner up in 2014. Fowler has been in good touch this season without really matching his results from 2017 but he has a great record at Shinnecock Hills and we will come back to him in the conclusion of this preview’s 2018 US Open predictions.
Three-time winner Tiger Woods (best at +2447 with Bookmaker) and our defending champion Brooks Koepka (longest at +2559 with the same firm) are on the edge of the chasing pack. Tiger continues to show brief flashes of form while Koepka has been solid but he would be the first since Curtis Strange in 1989 to successfully defend the US Open.
This US Open preview will now peruse the outsiders. We took a nice outside profit last week by backing JB Holmes for a Top 10 finish and there should be some excellent value as we move through this market. Having made an overdue return to winning ways this season, it may be a surprise to see Phil Mickelson as a long priced-option at +3300 with Intertops for victory this week.
This is the only major that eludes Phil but six runners-up slots and that return to form says that he should be taken seriously. US Masters Champion Patrick Reed (a standout +5197 with Bookmaker) is even further back and there is a host of players in good touch who can’t be ruled out.
Bryson Dechambeau, Tommy Fleetwood, Paul Casey, Kevin Chappell and Webb Simpson are just five more names to put on the radar. There are many more that we don’t have time to touch on so let’s move on and see what it takes to find our 2018 US Open Winner.
US Open 2018 Predictions Verdict with Betting Picks & Course Trends
The Shinnecock Hills course hosts the US Open for the first time since 2004 when Retief Goosen won by two strokes over Phil Mickelson. This is a par 70 course but it is a lengthy one at just under 7,500 yards and plays like a typical links venue with wind just one of the hazards here.
The tournament rotates venues but some stats are constant and in recent years, winners have ranked in single figures for Greens in Regulation while Driving Distance has also been significant.
Dustin Johnson deserves his place at the top of the US Open odds market but we’re looking to Rickie Fowler who is in form and enjoying life following his recent engagement. He has good stats too so Fowler for the win is the main tip along with some Top Ten suggestions. Here are this preview’s 2018 US Open picks: