WGC-FedEx St. Jude Round 2 Picks: Target Jason Day, Gary Woodland in Matchups
Photo credit: Andy Lyons/Getty Images. Pictured: Jason Day
At one point during his Wednesday pre-tournament press conference, WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational defending champion Brooks Koepka said of his recent on-course funk, “I know I’m going to turn [it] around eventually.”
Well, as it appears, “eventually” might’ve been one day later, as he opened with an 8-under 62 to grab a two-shot lead after the first round.
If you think he’s truly back and want to invest in him to go back-to-back, you’ll have to pay up.
After just one round, Koepka has moved from +3500 to +225. Unless you own a time machine, that’s a tough one to chase.
Instead, if you’re looking to play a live outright, it might be smart to go the young-gun route, as Viktor Hovland, Matthew Wolff and Collin Morikawa posted scores of 67, 69 and 70, respectively, but each lost strokes to the field on the greens.
The same could be said for Sergio Garcia (67) and Webb Simpson (69), each of whom were among the top ball-strikers but putted below average.
Let’s get to some plays for Friday’s round, which has been moved up due to impending weather concerns.
Round 2 Matchups
Gary Woodland (+110) over Daniel Berger
For the first time since his torrid run started, Berger finally received some respect in the market this week – the combination of those recent results and his two career wins at TPC Southwind.
Perhaps, though, the market has overcorrected. After both of these players posted opening-round scores of 1-over 71, Woodland’s ball-striking numbers look much better, yet the reigning U.S. Open champion is the ‘dog in this one. That’s a nice play at the right price.
Billy Horschel (+100) over Tony Finau
It was a wild opening round for Horschel, who double-bogeyed his second hole, remained 2-over at the turn, made four birdies on his second nine, but bogeyed two of his last three to shoot an eventful even-par 70.
Finau matched that score with a more conventional two-birdie, two-bogey performance, but it’s easy to imagine he’s a bit out of gas after another title contention – and yes, another heartbreaker – last week.
I liked Horschel coming into this one and I’d rather keep buying than start selling now.
Jason Day (+190) over Rickie Fowler
Look, I wasn’t on Day to start the week – and I especially wasn’t on him after the news that he’d split from longtime instructor Colin Swatton. And I was on Fowler, who tends to play well in tough conditions – and they’re expecting wind and rain throughout the rest of this week.
But … this feels like a major overreaction to Thursday’s scores, as Fowler posted a 64 and Day was four shots further back after a 68. I still like Fowler – and I still don’t love Day. If they’re offering nearly 2/1 odds on the latter, though, it’s tough to fade that.
Link your Parx and Action accounts so your golf bets automatically sync over to the app.