2022 US Open Odds, Predictions & Best Bets: Zalatoris & McIlroy To Make Some Noise

The 122nd US Open kicks off June 16th and runs through June 19th. It takes place at The Country Club in Brookline, Massachusetts – the first time hosting a major since 1988. The historic course features tiny greens, tight fairways, thick rough, blind shots, and elevation changes. It’s only 7,264 yards though, which is around the average length for a PGA Tour course. The 2022 Masters (7,510) and 2022 PGA Championship (7,556), on the other hand, forced players to strive for distance.

2022 US Open Outright Winner Odds

Predictions & Best Bets 

Will Zalatoris Winner (+3000 DK) & Top 5 (+650 DK)

In Will Zalatoris’ last two majors, he finished T6th (2022 Masters) and 2nd (2022 PGA Championship). The 25-year-old hasn’t been able to secure the win, but he’s consistently been in the mix. 

Given the nature of The Country Club, Zalatoris has the tools to win the US Open. According to datagolf.com, he is 6th on the PGA Tour in true strokes-gained for approach shots and 8th in true strokes-gained for off the tee shots. In fact, he is the only player in the top 17 for both categories. Why does this matter? Because the greens are ruthlessly small, players have to be extremely accurate when hitting their approach. Missing by a few feet will lead to a ball rolling off the green into the unforgiving rough, where a par is not a lock. Driving is also crucial because the thick rough will heavily alter second shots and significantly ruin birdie chances. The course isn’t too long, so a great drive will consistently provide wedge opportunities. Overall, Zalatoris’ skill set is tailor-made for this course. I also don’t think the pressure gets to him, as he was composed during his comeback in the PGA Championship. 

Rory McIlroy Top 5 (+300 DK) 

McIlroy was T7th (2021 US Open), 2nd (2022 Masters), and 8th (2022 PGA Championship) in his past three majors. He is a four-time major winner, so he understands how to handle the pressure and produce under stress. Rory is also coming off a victory at the RBC Canadian Open, which was June 9-12. He has momentum entering the US Open and is playing some of the best golf of his illustrious career. 

McIlroy is 1st in overall true-strokes gained and 1st in tee-to-green true-strokes gained, according to datagolf.com. His all-around game will allow him to maneuver any obstacle in his path. Because Rory is elite off the tee, I expect him to minimize disastrous mistakes that will claim other players. He should see plenty of birdie chances if he can produce with his wedge. The greens won’t be impossible, so look for McIlroy to secure plenty of birdies throughout the tournament. 

American Winner (-140 DK) 

The United States currently has 11 players in the top 16 of the Official World Golf Rankings. Scheffler (1), Cantlay (4), Thomas (5), Morikawa (7), Burns (9), Spieth (10), Horschel (11), Schauffele (12), Zalatoris (14), Finau (15), and Johnson (16th) lead the way for them. However, there are also dark horses such as Koepka, Young, and Homa who could make noise. Overall, there are too many talented Americans to not like this spot. The biggest threats are McIlroy, Rahm, and Smith, but the sheer number of Americans is overwhelming. Zalatoris (my pick to win the US Open) is also an American, which is a bonus for me. 

I am a junior at the University of Pennsylvania with a sports analytics background. My focus revolves around the analytics behind fantasy football and sports betting. I am interested in the identification and breakdown of trends that optimize success in the sports betting world.

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