Golfstradamus: Genesis Open

Hello, friends and degenerates! This week, the PGA Tour continues its West Coast Swing, rolling into Los Angeles and Riviera Country Club for the Genesis Open. 

Perhaps more than any event that doesn’t take place at Augusta National, the Genesis Open at Riviera is one of the most predictable tournaments of the year. For some reason, there are a ton of horses for this course… es. Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson, and, of course, Bubba Watson, just to name a few who routinely populate the leaderboard here. 

In fact, reading the recent list of winners here sounds pretty close to George Steinbrenner running down the list of people he’s had to let go for George Costanza — just replace “Billy Martin” with “Bubba Watson.” 

So, who will take home the title this week? Here’s a look at your can’t-miss, no-doubt, slam-dunk, mortal locks for the Genesis Open.

Genesis Open
Riviera Country Club – Pacific Palisades, California
February 14 – 17, 2019

ODDS to Win:
Dustin Johnson 8/1
Justin Thomas 12/1
Jon Rahm 14/1
Rory McIlroy 14/1
Bryson DeChambeau 14/1
Tiger Woods 20/1
Bubba Watson 20/1
Xander Schauffele 20/1
Phil Mickelson 20/1
Jordan Spieth 25/1
Tony Finau 25/1
Hideki Matsuyama 25/1
Patrick Cantlay 25/1
Paul Casey 30/1
Matt Kuchar 30/1
Tommy Fleetwood 35/1
Marc Leishman 35/1
Cameron Smith 35/1
Adam Scott 35/1
Sergio Garcia 40/1
Louis Oosthuizen 40/1
Chez Reavie 50/1
Branden Grace 50/1
Charles Howell III 50/1
Adam Hadwin 50/1
Rafael Cabrera Bello 60/1
Jason Kokrak 60/1
Tyrrell Hatton 80/1
Cameron Champ 80/1
Sungjae Im 80/1
Si Woo Kim 80/1
Scott Stallings 80/1
Andrew Putnam 80/1
Kevin Na 80/1
Martin Laird 80/1
Aaron Wise 100/1
J.B. Holmes 100/1
Keegan Bradley 80/1
Abraham Ancer 100/1
Sung Kang 100/1
Luke List 100/1
Charley Hoffman 125/1
Kevin Tway 125/1
Kevin Streelman 125/1
Danny Willett 125/1
Beau Hossler 125/1
Russell Henley 125/1
J.T. Poston 125/1
Harold Varner III 125/1
Jimmy Walker 125/1
Ryan Moore 150/1
Joaquin Niemann 150/1
Charl Schwartzel 150/1
Martin Kaymer 150/1
Kyle Stanley 150/1
Pat Perez 150/1
Trey Mullinax WD
Bud Cauley 150/1
Brendan Steele 150/1
James Hahn 150/1
Brian Gay 150/1
Jhonattan Vegas 150/1
Brian Harman 150/1
Steve Stricker WD
C.T. Pan 150/1
Bill Haas 150/1
Jim Furyk 150/1
J.J. Spaun 150/1
Chris Stroud 150/1
Kiradech Aphibarnrat 150/1
Anirban Lahiri 200/1
Peter Uihlein 200/1
Ollie Schniederjans 200/1
Danny Lee 200/1
Patrick Rodgers 200/1
Jason Dufner 200/1
Ernie Els 250/1
Nick Taylor 300/1
Fred Couples 300/1
Field (all others) 14/1

Mortal locks: 

Dustin Johnson — It seems like anywhere you go the first 10-12 weeks of the PGA Tour season, Dustin Johnson’s name appears as one of the favorites. It stands to reason as DJ seems to do most of his winning early in the campaign. To say Johnson’s resume at Riviera is good is an understatement. With six top-3 finishes — including a win here in 2017 — I’d be taking the action on DJ regardless of the odds. At 8/1, he’s as sure a thing as you’ll find. 

Bubba Watson — The number of great betting choices at 20/1 at the Genesis Open are insane, and includes three-time and defending tournament winner Bubba Watson. Any time a guy has won three times at a venue, you have to put him in the “horses for courses” category and at least give him a look. Watson last teed it up at the Waste Management where he finished T-4. Take the good form and good vibes at Riviera and you’ve got a recipe for some more victory tears from Bubba on Sunday. 

Best Bets: 

Tiger Woods — Maybe it’s the fact that I grew up watching Big Cat demolish people routinely without so much as appearing to break a sweat, but I find it next to impossible to NOT to take the action on anything he’s involved in. In my opinion, its a crying shame he’s not in the Hall of Fame. His numbers might be a little skewed based on his time in Colorado but, come on — don’t punish the guy. He still hit 399 homers during the steroid era without… oh, sorry. Wrong Big Cat. I’ll take Tiger at 20/1 and you should, too. 

Phil Mickelson — Let’s be honest, going back-to-back on the PGA Tour is tough. I’d imagine going back-to-back on the PGA Tour at age 48 is even tougher. That said, Phil Mickelson has a chance to do just that this week at Riviera and, just like the previously mentioned Big Cat, Lefty is getting 20/1 money. That’s hard to ignore before you consider his incredible track record at Riviera. In his last nine starts here, Mickelson hasn’t missed a cut on the way to collecting two wins and two runner-up finishes. Please, sir, I’d like some more. 

Fun Under $5:

Fred Couples — One of these days, a guy like Boom Boom or Bernie Langer are going to show up at a PGA Tour event with their walkers and AARP cards and take the young bucks to the woodshed. At 300/1, my love of Freddie Couples and my desire to see the aforementioned happen far exceeds my desire to hang on to this $5 bill. 

There you have it, friends and degenerates. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go find out how I’m going to get on Team Eldrick for next year’s Celebrity Cup. I mean, really — Kid Rock? More juice than Golfstradamus? Is it 1999? I need a better publicist. Err, a publicist. 

Until next time, go and choose wisely…