Betting on the 2019 Open Championship – Odds, Matchup Picks, DraftKings Advice
By Michael Wynn
| July 17, 2019
The 68-year drought is over; golf fans in Northern Ireland can finally exhale. The 148th Open Championship has arrived, and some eye-popping storylines are already brewing at Royal Portrush.
Speculation surrounds Tiger Woods and his health as the Masters champ hasn’t competed since the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. Rory McIlroy is trying to win the Claret Jug on his home soil, while Brooks Koepka is striving to win his fifth major in the last 25 months.
Heck, Phil Mickelson didn’t eat solid food for six days and lost 15 pounds in an attempt to get his game back on track!
The 2019 British Open odds have been out for some time, and there are plenty of ways to profit while watching golf this weekend. There is a Milly Maker on DraftKings to consider, as well as a plethora of head-to-head matchups that have “juicy” written all over them.
Let’s dive right in, and I’ll preview what’s piquing my interest.
2019 Open Championship Odds to Win
The prices at MyBookie.ag are reflected below, and I must say, there’s a lot to be excited about.
Rory McIlroy +900
Brooks Koepka +1000
Tiger Woods +1500
Dustin Johnson +1600
Jon Rahm +1600
Justin Rose +2000
Francesco Molinari +2500
Xander Schauffele +2800
Rickie Fowler +3000
Justin Thomas +3000
Henrik Stenson +3000
Tommy Fleetwood +3000
Adam Scott +3300
Patrick Cantlay +3500
Jordan Spieth +3500
Matt Kuchar +3500
Hideki Matsuyama +4000
Bryson DeChambeau +4000
Jason Day +4000
Matt Wallace +5000
Louis Oosthuizen +5000
Paul Casey +5500
Marc Leishman +6000
Bernd Wiesberger +6600
Sergio Garcia +6600
Rafa Cabrera-Bello +6600
Shane Lowry +7000
Gary Woodland +7000
Graeme McDowell +7500
Matt Fitzpatrick +7500
Ian Poulter +7500
Eddie Pepperell +7500
Tony Finau +8000
Tyrrell Hatton +9000
Webb Simpson +9000
Patrick Reed +9000
Phil Mickelson +1000
Danny Willett +1000
As you shop your lines, you’ll see that there is some pretty obvious value staring you right in the face. For example, you can back “Lefty” at a crazy +10000 price tag, or you can invest in Gary Woodland at +7000.
I touched on guys like Matthew Fitzpatrick and Marc Leishman in my Open Championship sleepers post, and I sense that Xander Schauffele and Rickie Fowler are both primed to finally break through at a major.
Those are just a few ideas when it comes to predicting who will be crowned as the Champion Golfer of the Year. Now I’ll toss out a couple more.
Rory McIlroy – Ready to Seize the Moment
Just how significant is this particular week to Rory McIlroy? Well, the four-time major winner and native of Northern Ireland has already gone on record stating that it’s arguably the most important golf tournament he’ll ever play in.
Betting on McIlroy to win the British Open clearly has tons of merit, as you won’t find anyone hitting the ball as well as Rory is at present. “Flushing it” would be an understatement, as the 30-year-old leads the PGA Tour in strokes gained: off-the-tee and strokes gained: tee-to-green.
McIlroy’s 13-under-par performance last week at the Scottish Open is just what he needed to start building momentum, and I love where his mindset is at. Expect to see “Rors” peak over the weekend, and look for him to notch his fifth consecutive top-5 finish at the Open Championship.
What’s Up With Tiger Woods?
Winning the Masters in April was a triumph unlike anything we have witnessed before, but where does that leave Tiger Woods and his quest toward major #16?
Woods took more than a month off following his green jacket ceremony and thus paid the price at Bethpage Black as he missed the cut at the PGA Championship. Tiger registered a top-10 at the Memorial in early June and finished in a tie for 21st at the U.S. Open on Father’s Day, but now we’re back to that one-month hiatus thing.
According to Irish golfer and former Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley, taking this long of a break before the Open Championship will cost him an opportunity of winning the golf tournament.
Woods can’t expect to contend with so few competitive rounds under his belt. I wouldn’t rush to put any money on Tiger Woods.”
Two-time Open Champ Padraig Harrington, also Irish-born, was fairly blunt when asked his opinion on Tiger’s chances this week.
I personally think if you’re serious about winning the Open you’ve got to be playing tournament golf at least before it.”
I’d feel more comfortable betting on Tiger had he made an appearance on the links over the last two weeks, but the situation is what it is. I don’t suspect Tiger will seriously threaten to win on Sunday, but then again, I wouldn’t put anything past him.
My Pick to Win the 2019 British Open
All the buzz in Northern Ireland, and yet I haven’t heard a peep about Justin Thomas. In fact, I listened to golf touts on-site throw out a dozen or so names when asked their pick to win the British Open, yet not a soul uttered a single word about the 2017 FedEx Cup champion.
If the general public is going to be sleeping on JT, then I’m ready to load up.
The sore wrist appears to be fully behind Justin after he made 24 birdies and an eagle en route to a top-10 showing at the Scottish Open. Aside from the injury, a cold putter is really the only thing that has held Thomas back from visiting the winner’s circle in 2019.
Flying into Royal Portrush severely under the radar, this could be the week that everything comes together. If that pans out, I’ll be extremely pleased that the oddsmakers at MyBookie installed him at +3000.
British Open Matchup Picks
Thanks to this being the fourth and final major of the year, more head-to-head matchups are being offered compared to a typical week on the PGA Tour. Value at the top online golf sportsbooks isn’t always conspicuous, but locating the price discrepancies just takes time and research.
Jon Rahm vs. Justin Rose
I was a bit surprised that Justin Rose was available at +110 in a matchup against Jon Rahm this week at BetOnline.ag. That’s why I had to do a double take when I checked MyBookie.ag and spotted “Rosy” at +115 in the same head-to-head!
Don’t worry; I’m well aware that the Spaniard fired 64-62 over the weekend at the Irish Open to storm from behind and claim the trophy. I wouldn’t deny that “Rahmbo” is one of the most talented golfers on the planet. However, I also know that Jon’s temper tends to get the best of him when things aren’t going his way.
Could that be the reason Rahm has struggled so mightily during his three trips to the Open Championship? I can’t help but think that his pedestrian-like results (T-59th-T-44th-MC) at the British Open correlate to his inability to stay even-keeled when the going gets tough.
On the other hand, few are calmer and more collected under difficult and trying conditions as Justin Rose. It’s not so much that I’m envisioning Rose being the last man standing come Sunday evening in Portrush; it’s just that I can’t ignore seeing the fourth-ranked player in the world lurking as such a considerable underdog.
Bryson DeChambeau vs. Matt Wallace
Apparently, Bryson’s recent runner-up finish at the 3M Open in Minnesota has the golf world thinking his game is back to firing on all cylinders. I mean, I can’t think of any other reason he’d be such a substantial favorite over Matt Wallace in a head-to-head matchup.
I’ll concede that DeChambeau undoubtedly picked up a ton of confidence a couple weeks ago when he finished 20-under-par and in a tie for second. Eagling the 72nd hole at TPC Twin Cities when it mattered most is fantastic, but what I’m not sold on is that his game is well-suited to contend on links-style venues.
Remember, DeChambeau has an extraordinarily calculated approach and takes pride in executing his game plan. The problem is, curveballs inevitably get thrown at players at the British Open, and adjusting on the fly is vital for success.
Wallace placed 3rd at the PGA Championship, 12th at the U.S. Open, and is no stranger to success on this side of the pond. The Englishman has a pair of European Tour wins on his resume, not to mention that he played in both the Irish and Scottish Opens over the past two weeks.
I doubt this +115 price lasts, but even +110 would still make plenty of sense.
Byeong-Hun An vs. Joaquin Niemann
Let’s attempt to go “3-3” scooping some +115 underdogs. Given how hot Joaquin Nieman has been over the last month, I was prepared to have to pay the price if I wanted to back him in a head-to-head.
Instead, Niemann is chilling at +115 versus a dude who hasn’t cracked the top 50 in his last four Open Championships.
Joaquin might have gotten off to a slow start on the West Coast and in Florida, but it couldn’t be more blatant that he has figured something out. Not only has he connected on seven straight cuts, but he’s notched a trio of top 10s in the last four weeks alone.
People talk about the driver and the putter as being the two most important clubs in the modern age of golf, so I’ll leave you with this little tidbit.
DraftKings Millionaire Maker – Fantasy Golf Advice
Are you ready to try and turn $20 into a million-dollar first-place check? I’m talking about the $3M Fantasy Golf Millionaire Maker on DraftKings, by far the most lucrative way to win life-changing money without sacrificing an arm and a leg.
Follow along below as I’ll do my best to guide you to the Promised Land. I’ll highlight four individuals from each price point.
Top-Tier = Players priced at $9k and up
Mid-Tier = Players priced from $7,500 to $8,900
Low-Tier = Players priced from $6,000 to $7,400
Let’s start with the top tier, where 13 golfers are sitting between $9,000 and $11,600. Targeting the guys who won’t be massively owned is a fairly good rule of thumb to follow in these large-field GPPs, so you might need to steer clear of names like McIlroy and Koepka if you want a chance of standing out.
Tommy Fleetwood – $9,700
At $9,700 and more expensive than Xander Schauffele and the defending champion (Francesco Molinari), it’s easy to gloss over Tommy Fleetwood and not want to pull the trigger. If that’s the sentiment coming from the casual fan, the sharps know that Fleetwood is a really strong play to consider.
Rickie Fowler – $9,300
It’s been a quiet summer thus far for the guy slotted 10th in the current FedEx Cup standings, but don’t let that fool you into thinking Rickie Fowler won’t be prepared by 10:20 am local time on Thursday. Rickie has the ability to play every shot imaginable, and his creativity on and around the greens is unrivaled.
Justin Thomas – $9,100
First, a sleeping giant awoke at the Scottish Open. Now he’s about to be unleashed at Royal Portrush. Justin Thomas has been patiently waiting to be healthy at the start of a major championship, and he’ll get his shot at the Dunluce Course. Last week’s 18-under-par performance at the Renaissance Club in North Berwick was just a taste of what’s coming next.
Patrick Cantlay – $9,000
He amassed thirteen top 25s before June was over, and he leads the PGA Tour in scoring average. As for his recipe for being the top dog in the land getting his ball in the hole, how about ranking second in front-nine scoring average and fourth in back-nine scoring average? That’ll get the job done each and every time.
Just how stacked is the field this week in Northern Ireland? Just gaze at the list of world-class players sitting in the middle tier, and you’ll quickly find out.
Adam Scott – $8,800
Adam Scott is roiling the flat stick better than he has in years, and his ball striking has been exquisite as per usual. And while most participants are playing the Dunluce Course for the first time on Monday, Scott has spent the past week getting to know Royal Portrush inside and out.
Sergio Garcia – $7,800
Sergio Garcia has recorded ten top 10s at the Open Championship, and he’s coming off a seventh-place finish his last time out at the Andalucía Masters. Unfortunately, Garcia has laid eggs at the majors over the past two years, and his enthusiasm on the course is clearly lacking. The good thing is he can turn things around in a flash by getting off to a good start on Thursday.
Marc Leishman – $7,700
Here is a guy who can make birdies in bunches and has proven he can sustain success for four days at an Open Championship. Leishman placed fifth at Royal Liverpool (2014) and lost in a playoff to Zach Johnson and Louis Oosthuizen in 2015 at St. Andrews. Marc ran sixth at Royal Birkdale in 2017 and has logged six top 10s since the 2018/2019 PGA Tour season began.
Matthew Fitzpatrick – $7,600
Matt Fitzpatrick is a great putter with a sweet short game, and he drives the ball pretty straight. Given his distinct success on the European Tour, he’s my favorite play among anyone priced under $8K. With Phil Mickelson hanging out $100 cheaper, Fitzpatrick’s ownership should stay relatively benign.
And now for the bottom tier where we’re trying to extract as much value as we possibly can.
Abraham Ancer – $7,200
In the midst of a productive season on the PGA Tour, Abraham Ancer wanted to experience links golf under the gun before he teed it up at the 148th Open. Ancer took care of that with a top 20 at the Irish Open and has now been acclimated to the Irish time zone and culture for more than two weeks.
Joaquin Niemann – $6,900
I spilled the beans on Joaquin Niemann when I targeted him in the matchups section, and there’s no reason to shy away from playing him on DK. Taking into account his recent game log, it’s extremely likely that Niemann will be among the highest-owned players who are priced below $7,000. Nonetheless, if Joaquin keeps his foot on the gas and reels off another top 10, he’ll still do wonders for your lineup.
Andrew Putnam – $6,600
Are you curious as to how Andrew Putnam is adapting to links golf? I am happy to fill you in. Putnam fired rounds of 69-67-65-64 at the Scottish Open (fourth place), making just one bogey over his final 54 holes. Ranked third on the tour in strokes gained: putting, Andrew is positioned to surprise a lot of folks in Portrush.
Lucas Glover – $6,500
Lucas Glover is relishing the opportunity to play in a British Open after failing to qualify for the past five editions. Trailing only Patrick Cantlay and Webb Simpson in the scrambling department, the arm-lock putting stroke Glover has adopted has been working famously. “Armed” with fourteen top 25s and the second-best proximity from the rough of anyone on the PGA Tour, Lucas is a sneaky pick to land a top 10 at Royal Portrush.
Now it’s time to gather all that insight and construct a lineup you feel strongly about — preferably one that doesn’t utilize the entire salary, which in turn gives you a higher likelihood of having a unique roster.
My Lineup in GPPs for the 2019 British Open
Tommy Fleetwood $9,700
Rickie Fowler $9,300
Justin Thomas $9,100
Matthew Fitzpatrick $7,600
Abraham Ancer $7,200
Joaquin Niemann $6,900
Final Words of Wisdom
It’s the one weekend of the year that I’m actually excited about setting my alarm for the crack of dawn. It also happens to be your last chance to immerse yourself into betting a golf major for the next nine months.
Whether it’s picking a golfer to win, firing away on some matchups, or entering a lineup on DraftKings with the hopes of securing a seven-figure score, this Open Championship preview has you covered.
I’m not about to miss out on these opportunities, and I recommend you don’t either.