THE OVERVIEW

Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, Southampton, New York - The 2018 U.S. Open is returning to the legendary Shinnecock Hills Golf Club for the 5th time spanning over three centuries. This week the course is going to play as a 7,445-yard par 70 and has been meticulously groomed to present what the USGA deems is "the ultimate test of golf."

The last U.S. Open held here in 2004 saw only two players finish 72 holes under par. That event was won by South African Retief Goosen at 4 under with Phil Mickelson coming in second at 2 under. There was a bit of controversy that week with many of the players stating that they felt the USGA had lost control of the grounds. Phil Mickelson has even (indirectly) referred to those conditions as "carnival golf" and he famously intentionally played into the bunker on the par-3 7th that Sunday because the green was impossible to hold and he preferred the sand approach to any of the run-off positions.

Shinnecock Hills has since undergone a renovation/restoration at the hands of the Bill Coore/Ben Crenshaw golf design team. That renovation widened the fairways to allow for some of the originally intended approach angles. It also added 500 yards in the form of strategically placed back tees and extended green complexes where the links-style run-off is now more pronounced.

By all accounts this week is going to be a tough one for the players. Accuracy will be imperative off the tee. Although the fairways were widened to an average 60 yards during the restoration, they have since been narrowed to the 40 yard range (still twice as wide as in 2004) and the tall fescue rough will be absolutely punishing to play from.

Many experts are saying that bombers have a distinct advantage this week. A premium will also be placed on well-judged and expertly executed approaches into these hard, fast, dome-shaped greens. And all of that still does not take into account the intangibles: mental stamina, patience, and playing within oneself.

One thing is guaranteed, this week is going to be a fantastically-entertaining week of golf at one of the world's premier locations.

When selecting players this week, FGWW is going to be looking at Driving Length, Good Drive Percentage, SG-Approach, SG-Putting, and favoring some of the more experienced names.

 

PAST WINNERS

2017  -16   Brooks Koepka    (Runners Up:   -12   Hideki Matsuyama, Brian Harman)

2016  -4   Dustin Johnson   (Runners Up:   -1   Jim Furyk, Shane Lowry, Scott Piercy)

2015  -5   Jordan Spieth   (Runners Up:   -4   Dustin Johnson, Louis Oosthuizen)

2014  -9   Martin Kaymer   (Runners Up:   -1   Erik Compton, Rickie Fowler)

 

BETTING ODDS   (Bovada 6/11/2018)

Dustin Johnson  +900

Rory McIlroy  +1400

Justin Thomas  +1400

Justin Rose  +1400

Jordan Spieth  +1600

Jason Day  +1800

Tiger Woods  +1800

Rickie Fowler  +1800

Brooks Koepka  +2000

Jon Rahm  +2200

Hideki Matsuyama  +2800

Phil Mickelson  +3000

Henrik Stenson  +3300

Branden Grace  +3300

Patrick Reed  +4000

Bryson DeChambeau  +4000

Tommy Fleetwood  +4500

Sergio Garcia  +5000

Bubba Watson  +5000

Paul Casey  +5000

Louis Oosthuizen  +6000

Marc Leishman  +6000

Francesco Molinari  +6000

Patrick Cantlay  +6000

Adam Scott  +6600

Alex Noren  +6600

Matt Kuchar  +6600

Tony Finau  +6600

Webb Simpson  +6600

 

HOT PLAYERS

Dustin Johnson

Justin Rose

Rory McIlroy

Rickie Fowler

Francesco Molinari

 

HORSES FOR THE COURSE

Insufficient course history.

 

LONGER SHOTS

Charl Schwartzel  +8000

Aaron Wise  +10000

Xander Schauffele  +10000

Brandt Snedeker  +10000

Jimmy Walker  +10000

Kyle Stanley  +10000

Emiliano Grillo  +10000

Byeong Hun An  +10000

Brian Harman  +12500

Charley Hoffman  +12500

Ian Poulter  +12500

Jason Dufner  +12500

Matthew Fitzpatrick  +12500

Peter Uihlein  +15000

Adam Hadwin  +15000

Cameron Smith  +15000

Daniel Berger  +15000

Kevin Kisner  +15000

Kiradech Aphibarnrat  +15000

Luke List  +15000

 

FAITHFULS

Justin Rose

Henrik Stenson

Phil Mickelson

Branden Grace

Ian Poulter

 

THE 'FORE' SOMES

'FORE' SOMES are chosen by selecting one player from a "low tier" betting pool (30:1 or better), two players from a "mid tier" (30:1 - 75:1), and a final player from a "high tier" (75:1 & up).  

KEITH'S 'FORE' SOME 

Justin Rose  (14:1).  For pure maturity and rockin' current form, Justin Rose is the name that jumps out the most of any in the top ten this week. Just back in December it really looked like Rose was quite possibly the best player in the world. He won the WGC-HSBC and the Turkish Airlines Open in back to back weeks. He followed that up with a T4 at the DP World Tour, T10 at the Hong Kong Open, T5 at the Hero World Challenge, and a win at the Indonesian Masters. In his nine events since then he has FIVE top tens, including his recent win at Fort Worth and a T6 at The Memorial. Rose is also a U.S. Open Champion, having won in 2013 at Merion Golf Club. Talking about the intangibles, Rose is loaded for bear. He's been playing in majors longer than some of these other names have been playing golf and he's in peak mental and physical condition. He was the favorite for many at The Masters back in April where he finished T12. Didn't get it done that week; perhaps this one is his.

Bryson DeChambeau  (40:1)  & Tommy Fleetwood (40:1). 

There are a ton of great names at this range to get excited about. Bryson DeChambeau is a personal fave and probably not the most sensible play, but if he brings his A-game to Long Island this week and I'm not on him, it might crush my soul. Bryson is only in his second year on the tour and just notched his second win two weeks ago at The Memorial. In his last seven events, DeChambeau has FOUR top five finishes. Arguably the most consistently great player over the past couple months, Bryson has a ton of potential for a solid week at Shinnecock. The one cause for pause here would be that he hasn't seen very many U.S. Open set ups. He missed the cut last year at Erin Hills, but he finished T15 the year before at Oakmont. With his pedigree, no stage will be too big. It may be a bit of a stretch, but Bryson has all the tools to win this week. Currently ranked 22nd in the OWGR.

Tommy Fleetwood is actually the name at this range that I believe has the best chance to win. His game sets up beautifully for this track. He's long and straight off the tee, fire with his irons, putts lights out, and loves big, high-profile events. Over the past rolling five events, Tommy ranks in the top ten in both SG-Approach and SG-Putting. He has tons of experience and will embrace the links-style layout. Currently ranked 12th in the OWGR and really at a place in his career where he can take down a title like this.

Emiliano Grillo  (100:1).  Tough picking at the high tier this week. Few of these names have a genuine chance of flat-out winning. It may be more reasonable to spread around a few top 10 wagers on the favorites. Grillo is currently super solid tee to green and a darling among the fantasy golf spheres. Other names to like here are Luke List, Chesson Hadley, and Brendan Steele.

**(differing odds come from Will Hill)

 

JOHN'S 'FORE' SOME 

Rickie Fowler  18:1

Branden Grace  33:1

Hideki Matsuyama  33:1

Jimmy Walker  100:1

 

GAVIN'S 'FORE' SOME 

Coming soon.

 

Listen to this week’s podcast to hear the team’s thoughts on the event and tweet us @fantasygolfww or #fgww.

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