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Expert PGA Betting Picks: 2018 U.S. Open

Look, predicting a pre-tournament winner in golf isn’t easy. While it’s true sports bettors can find fantastic value, it’s incredibly frustrating when one of your picks doesn’t even make the cut. That’s why I’m here to help.

Every week I’ll highlight three golfers who have a good chance to win the hardware for the upcoming weekend. This week it’s the second major of the year: the U.S. Open.

For a full breakdown of the tournament, check out my betting preview.

Odds courtesy of Bovada

My favorite pick: Justin Rose +1200

Rose knows what it takes to win the U.S. Open after a clutch performance in 2013 (his only major title), and the Englishman isn’t slowing down at 37. Rose has been one of the hottest players on the PGA Tour this season, collecting two wins and six top-10s as well as a T-12 finish at the Masters. Rose’s victories came at the WGC-HSBC Champions and the Fort Worth Invitational, where he recorded scores of -14 and -20, respectively.

Shinnecock Hills is the toughest golf course many players will encounter in their lifetimes, but the track suits Rose’s game perfectly. The course’s tiny, demanding greens require razor-like precision on approach shots, and Rose’s iron game is unrivaled on the tour. For that reason alone I’m more than comfortable backing Rose at his pre-tournament price of +1200.

My second favorite pick: Rickie Fowler +1800

Since turning pro in 2009, Fowler has become one of the most likable and recognizable players on the tour. But while the California native has established himself as a force on the PGA Tour, he hasn’t been able to get over the hump on golf’s biggest stage. It feels like it’s only a matter of time before he gets his first major under his belt.

Fowler’s inability to go all the way on golf’s biggest stages is not an issue for me after his fantastic back nine in a runner-up showing at the 2018 Masters. Since the 2015 PGA Championship, there have been nine first-time major champions (Jason Day, Danny Willett, Dustin Johnson, Henrik Stenson, Jimmy Walker, Sergio Garcia, Brooks Koepka, Justin Thomas and Patrick Reed). I fully expect Fowler’s name to be added to that list soon.

My third favorite pick: Tommy Fleetwood +4000

Despite becoming a regular atop leaderboards in North America over the last few years, Fleetwood is consistently undervalued at sportsbooks. Rose’s fellow countryman had a coming-out party of sorts at last year’s U.S. Open when he notched a fourth-place finish at Erin Hills. At +4000, he provides the best betting value on the board, in my opinion.

Fleetwood is a ball-striking machine who has come extremely close to picking up a win in 2018 (fourth at the Honda Classic, T-4 at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans and T-7 at The Players Championship). Despite possessing six international triumphs, he hasn’t won on this side of the pond yet, but his time is coming.