Sobel’s 2019 Houston Open Betting Preview: Embrace the Chaos of a Terrible Field


Caylor Arnold, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Bud Cauley

Oct 08, 2019, 11:53 AM EDT

For years, the appeal of the Houston Open resided in its place on the schedule just prior to the Masters and the ability of host course GC of Houston to mirror certain aspects of Augusta National, often leading to an eclectic amalgamation of competitors, from global players hoping to prep for the year’s first major to those without an invitation trying to claim that final golden ticket with a victory.

As it turns out, that appeal doesn’t remain when the tournament is exactly six months before the Masters.

A change in date has also yielded a change in field, as the highest-ranked player competing this week is Henrik Stenson, who is mired at a mere 37th on the world ranking.

(How poor is this field? In the PGA Tour’s “featured groupings,” which always include the biggest possible drawing cards, are past champions Jim Herman and D.A. Points, neither of whom are “featured” very often these days.)

That’s bad news for a tourney that was saved by Jim Crane, owner of the hard-charging Houston Astros (more on him below), but it could be a good thing for high-risk bettors hoping to cash in at an event that won’t include a single sure thing in the mix. The caveat being that the lack of any true stars has caused bookmakers to slash prices on players who normally would carry long odds.

Let’s take a look at one of the least star-studded PGA Tour events we’ll see all season.

Outright Winner

One player to win the tournament.

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