Be sure to check back every week as the experts at The Linemakers provide odds and analysis of the latest golf tournaments and the athletes competing in them.
LAS VEGAS — Last week, Justin Rose (25-to-1) became the first Englishman to win the U.S. Open since Tony Jacklin in 1970 at Hazeltine. Rose shot a final-round 70 to finish at +1 (281) and win his first major.
Fan favorite Phil Mickelson went into the final round with a one-shot lead, but made two double bogeys on the front nine and two bad bogeys on the back nine.
Phil also eagled No. 10 by holing out from the rough, but he finished two shots back with a final-round 74. This was the sixth time Mickelson finished second at the U.S. Open, and it may have been his last shot to win our national championship – Sunday was his 43rd birthday,.
Give Rose all the credit for his poise down the stretch and his play all week long – he was the only player in the field not to shoot a round higher than 71 during the tournament.
The real winner last week, though, was Merion Golf Club. After all the speculation that the short course would not be able to stand up to today’s best players, the winner shot 1-over par for the week. It was the third time in the last four years that the U.S. Open winner failed to break par.
The PGA Tour moves this week to The Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Conn.
This is another short golf course by tour standards, at 6,841 yards. Par is 70.
Aussie Marc Leishman is the defending champion. He shot a final-round 62 last year to get the win over Charley Hoffman, who bogeyed the final two holes.
Rose will play this week, along with seven others in the top 25 of the world golf rankings.
This can be a tricky little golf course, so let’s take a look at some guys who have had success here in the past.
BUBBA WATSON (20-1). Bubba has been in the top 15 four times in this event. He won here in 2010 and tied for second last year.
JASON DUFNER (20-1). Dufner is the one guy we are looking at who does not have past success here. He has not played this event since 2008, but shot a final-round 67 last week and has proven that when he gets hot, he can stay hot.
PADRAIG HARRINGTON (40-1). Harrington tied for 21st at Merion and tied for 10th the week before. He tied for fifth here in 2010 and tied for 11th last year.
RYAN MOORE (40-1). Moore is another guy who likes this golf course, tying for second twice and tying for fourth in seven starts here. He has made the cut six of the seven years he has entered.
For our matchup play, we’re going to use Dufner (+105) over Hunter Mahan. Mahan may be a little deflated after failing to convert many chances to win during last Sunday’s final round.
While the week following the U.S. Open may be somewhat of a letdown for golf fans, this is a fun event on a beautiful course where pros can post low numbers.
Next week is the AT&T National at Congressional, where Tiger Woods is expected to compete. Until then, good luck and enjoy.
ODDS TO WIN 2013 TRAVELERS CHAMPIONSHIP
Justin Rose 12/1
Lee Westwood 15/1
Hunter Mahan 15/1
Bubba Watson 20/1
Jason Dufner 20/1
Rickie Fowler 25/1
Webb Simpson 25/1
Keegan Bradley 30/1
John Rollins 30/1
Harris English 30/1
Ian Poulter 40/1
Ryan Moore 40/1
Bo Van Pelt 40/1
Zach Johnson 40/1
Freddie Jacobson 40/1
Padraig Harrington 40/1
Nicolas Colsaerts 40/1
Charley Hoffman 40/1
Brendon de Jonge 40/1
Marc Leishman 50/1
Tim Clark 50/1
John Huh 50/1
Graham DeLaet 50/1
Brian Davis 50/1
Carl Pettersson 50/1
Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano 60/1
Jonas Blixt 60/1
K.J. Choi 60/1
Ben Crane 60/1
Robert Garrigus 60/1
Camilo Villegas 60/1
James Driscoll 60/1
Gary Woodland 60/1
Kevin Streelman 60/1
Michael Thompson 60/1
Kyle Stanley 60/1
Angel Cabrera 80/1
Chris Kirk 80/1
Stewart Cink 80/1
Mark Wilson 80/1
Chris Stroud 80/1
Chez Reavie 80/1
Bud Cauley 100/1
Jonthan Byrd 100/1
Jerry Kelly 100/1
Vijay Singh 125/1
Aaron Baddeley 125/1
Mike Weir 200/1
John Daly 300/1
Field (all others) 5/2
Justin Rose -110 vs. Lee Westwood -110
Jason Dufner +105 vs. Hunter Mahan -125
Rickie Fowler +110 vs. Bubba Watson -130
Keegan Bradley EVEN vs. Webb Simpson -120
Padraig Harrington -110 vs. Ian Poulter -110
Freddie Jacobson -110 vs. Zach Johnson -110
Brendon de Jonge -125 vs. Graham DeLaet +105
Charley Hoffman -110 vs. John Huh -110
K.J. Choi -110 vs. Carl Pettersson -110
James Driscoll -110 vs. Chez Reavie -110
Related Link: Marc Leishman Returns to River Highlands
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