Another disappointing major from a betting perspective passes us by and this time a significant loss. It hasn't been an easy year but we're only one winner away from healthy profit and that will be my aim over the coming weeks to stem the tide. This week the TPC at River Highlands represents a chance for all types of golfers to prosper on a track that rewards fine approach play and a solid putting game. Bubba has won this three times whilst the likes of Knox, Streelman and Spieth have executed a more planned strategic approach to scoring. Overall we can't rule many out from the outset.
Brooks Keopka tops the betting at a generous enough +800 top price. He showed last week just how much of a special golfer he is almost raising the bar on his incredible achievements in majors to date. Surprisingly though he only has two regular PGA tour events to his name and that is the reason why he isn't a lot shorter in the market. Majors are where he concentrates the most and with no disrespect whatsoever to this event I just don't think it's very important to him. That being said he is going to tally up a fair few victories in the next few years and would be foolishly dismissed. I think he holds every chance of going well here and I wouldn't put anyone off pouncing on the +800.
Bubba Watson attempts to make history here by winning this event four times and I'm very surprised by the +2800 quotes out there. Outside of the Masters, his major record is very sketchy and two missed cuts in the last two majors are of little worry to me as personally I don't think they'll be of any annoyance to the man himself. Previous to this major run he had a solid run of results dating back to the start of the year. He won the Travelers last year having missed the cut in the US Open last time out. His previous win at the Matchplay was preceded by a 66th spot at the Arnold Palmer. In 2016 he won the Northern Trust having finished 70th at Pebble Beach the week before. All this points towards Bubba playing his best golf where he is comfortable. He has won three events multiple times and I just think anything above the 22/1 mark is a risky play by the layers.
Bubba Watson to win @ +2800
Another slightly overpriced this week is Kevin Streelman. He has an excellent record in this event with a couple of top tens and a win back in 2014. He is capable of remarkable birdie runs as we've seen so many times down the years, especially towards the end of events. You need that here with birdies and momentum key to staying atop the leaderboard throughout the week. He comes here fresher than most having missed the US Open. 6th in Texas was followed by the same result at the Dye Layout at Harbour Town and an impressive run of figures over the weekend at the Memorial saw him hoisted to 4th place. This a savage run of figures for someone like Streelman who has climbed to his highest world ranking spot since 2015. The +6600 out there looks a solid piece of value to my eyes.
Kevin Steelman to win @ +6600
Daniel Berger is one who is hard to catch given his inconsistency but a run of seven made cuts on the trot suggest his game is in decent nick. In 2016 and 2017 he finished 5th and 2nd here at this track. Last year was a bit of a blip finishing 67th but that is largely down to the fact he had a long, gruelling week of contending at the US Open at Shinnecock where he joint lead heading into the final day before dropping to finish in a tie for 6th. Previous to 2018 7 of 8 rounds here were in the 60s including a sparkling 62. He should arrive a bit more fresher this year and with his game in fine shape I expect a bold showing.
Daniel Berger to win @ +7000
Joel Dahmen has gone close a few times this season and may walk through that victory door before the year is out. He plays better on the tracks that reward a neat long game and should his putter warm up he may just contend here. He joint lead the Valspar after round 1 (good times) and went close at Quail Hollow eventually finishing 2nd to Max Homa. 12th at Sawgrass, and 16th at Harbour Town is a sign he plays Pete Dye courses well and this bodes well for River Highlands this week. He hasn't been going all to well lately but a return to a track that suits should give him hope.
Joel Dahman to win @ +12500