WM Phoenix Open Odds, Picks: 5 Potential Live Betting Options, Including Jon Rahm & Tom Kim
Steph Chambers/Getty Images. Pictured: Jon Rahm.
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — We’re two days into the raucous WM Phoenix Open, and the real party hasn’t even begun yet.
Things always get turned up a few notches at TPC Scottsdale on Saturday — and this time, that doesn’t just mean outside the ropes.
With half of this field still needing to complete their second rounds in the morning, the spectators who line up in the early-morning hours outside these front gates will have some meaningful golf to watch right off the bat, as a dozen of the top 27 on the current leaderboard will be on the course early.
Unlike the first two days, these players will be greeted by a negligible one-club breeze — conditions that will persist throughout the day, offering more scoring opportunities and a chance for some players to make a serious climb up a star-studded leaderboard currently topped by defending champion Scottie Scheffler.
Anyone with designs on winning this one will have to dethrone the champ, but here are five options of varying odds who are potential outright buys entering the weekend.
Jon Rahm (T-2, 8-Under): +330
If you’ve played Rahm live going into the weekend in each of his first three starts of this year, you’re already winning at a 66.7% clip.
It’s tough to believe he won’t be around at the end of this one, though he’s doing it differently than those previous two victories. He lost 1.34 strokes to the field on approach shots in his second round but gained 3.31 putting.
That’s not the usual combo we’re looking for, but I believe the narrative play on Rahm — who moved to this area 10 years ago to attend Arizona State without knowing any English and could come full circle on his journey with a win here — is enough to believe he’ll get it done this weekend by any means necessary, even if he has to continue his lights-out putting.
Xander Schauffele (T-6, 6-Under Through 12 Holes): +600
Look, I’m giving you options here: I’m not suggesting you add all of these plays to your card. What I’m saying is that if you’re adding Rahm live, then you shouldn’t also add Schauffele at relatively short odds.
But if you don’t trust the former’s ball-striking numbers, then the latter makes a lot of sense. In five starts at this event, Schauffele has never finished worse than 17th — and he’s been inside the top three in each of the past two years.
This one has often felt like an inevitable winning track for Xander. With six holes left to play in his second round on Saturday morning, he could be much closer to the lead by the time he reaches Round 3.
Jordan Spieth (T-11, 5-Under Through 12 Holes): +2800
There wasn’t a lot of love for Spieth from most experts entering this week, especially on the trail of a missed cut at the Sony Open and T-63 at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in his last two starts.
Now would be a good time to remember, however, that four years ago in the midst of a four-year winless drought where it often appeared as if he might never win again, Spieth came alive in the third round at this event, putting on a vintage performance to the tune of a 61 that vaulted him up the leaderboard.
He’s done it before, he can do it again. At 28-1, I don’t want to watch it happen without having a piece of it.
Tom Kim (T-11, 5-Under): +3500
In order to succeed in the TPC Scottsdale maelstrom, you’ve got to embrace the environment. The youngster who pumped up the Quail Hollow crowd on the first tee of the Presidents Cup, then fist-pumped his way around the course for three days certainly fits the profile.
In his maiden voyage to this event, he seemingly ticks all the boxes for what we’re looking for in a contender here.
He’s been doing most of his damage with the putter so far, gaining 2.88 strokes on the greens, but he’s shown a proficiency for staying red-hot at times with the flatstick, and he has a caddie on the bag in Joe Skovron who’s won here before.
Scott Stallings (T-18, 3-Under): +50000
With my last selection, I’m going much further down the board to Stallings, whose performances have outweighed his results over the past year. What I mean by this is that he’s played well enough to win, but the victory just hasn’t happened for him.
With the fifth-best Strokes Gained: Approach number through two rounds, it’s not so improbable to think he can beat all the big names on this board. At 500-1, it’s worth a little taste.
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