The Bearded Talisman's US Open 2023 bets
“Livin’ it up at the Hotel California”: The Bearded Talisman’s six bets for this week’s US Open at Los Angeles Country Club
1. Scottie Scheffler (7-1) WIN – Normally I don’t bet golfers on such short odds, but in the case of the current number one ranked player in the world, I have to do it. In his 12 stroke play events this year, he’s won twice and has SEVEN Top 5s. His WORST finish this year is Tied 12th at Riviera – a week after he won $3.6 million at Waste Management. If you go back to the PGA Championship where he finished Tied-2nd, he probably would have won if not for the heavy rains on Saturday, which impacted his game more than most that day – as Scottie, with all the foot movement in his swing, could never seem to maintain his balance. There is almost zero chance of rain this coming weekend in Los Angeles. The forecast is sunny conditions in the range of mid-70s to low-80s for every round, with 320 yard Scottie Scheffler drives perfectly placed in the fairways. Ironically the only weakness to his game of late has been putting, but if you listen to Scottie his putting and overall focus is best during majors. Gun to my head, he’s my top pick.
2. Bryson DeChambeau (45-1) WIN – The 2020 US Open champion is clearly over the injuries suffered during 2022. He finished Tied 4th at the PGA Championship and followed it up the next week with 3 straight 2 under par rounds at LIV DC. DeChambeau is a native of Modesto, California and is the former California State Junior champion, so he is playing on home turf. Bryson’s former caddie says DeChambeau is the hardest working person – in ANY profession – that he’s ever met. I’ve always viewed Bryson as a big-game player – NCAA individual champion in 2015, US Amateur Champion in 2015. Then in 2020, he won The US Open win at Winged Foot by SIX STROKES when no other golfer broke par. With incredible talent and work ethic, and now fully healthy again, he is a definite win candidate in his native state.
3. Patrick Cantlay (14-1) WIN – The 4th ranked player in the world is at home in Los Angeles. A Long Beach native, Cantlay went to UCLA and is in the UCLA Athletics Hall of Fame. He’s had 16 Top 10s since the start of last season, including a Tied 9th at the PGA Championship. Cantlay is a warm weather player. He was out of sync in the cold conditions in Rochester on Thursday, and the rainy conditions during round 3 – yet, he still finished in the Top 10. The conditions this week are ideal, and having played at UCLA, he knows this course as well as anyone. I expect the Southern California kid to play big this week.
4. Xander Schauffele (18-1) WIN – The San Diego native is the 6th ranked golfer in the world. He’s had 3 Top 10s – including 2 Top 5s – in his last 5 stroke play events in 2023. He’s had 5 Top 10s in 6 US Open appearances in his career. Along with DeChambeau he is one of the most physically fit golfers on tour. He definitely has paid the price at the gym and in the weight room. The 2021 Olympic Gold Medalist has done just about everything on tour but win a major. Why not do it in your backyard of Southern California?
5. Dustin Johnson (35-1) WIN – In the last 9 US Opens, DJ has finished in the top 6 five times, including winning in 2016. Though he turns 39 later this month, he still has a very intimidating presence on the course. He’s made $111 million playing golf in 2023 and is less than a month removed from winning LIV Tulsa. On the greens, there is probably not a golfer I trust more right now than DJ. He sounds confident in the state of his game – and I think that says a lot considering he’s spent 135 weeks as the world number one ranked player in his career. 35-1 to win?? I’m all over it.
6. Hideki Matsuyama (40-1) WIN – Tied 53rd, Tied 42nd, Missed Cut, Tied 15th, Tied 18th and Missed Cut. Those were Matsuyama’s finishing positions in the 6 tourneys prior to him WINNING The Masters in 2021. 5th, Tied 15th, Tied 16th, Tied 23rd, Tied 29th and Tied 16th. Those are Matsuyama’s finishing positions in the 6 stroke play tourneys prior to entering this year’s US Open. He’s made the cut 9 times out of 10 appearances in US Opens, finishing Tied 2nd in 2017, and last year he finished 4th. He played better than he scored at The Memorial two weeks ago, and his game is very much trending in the right direction.
Editor’s Note: The Bearded Talisman (BT) is one of the most successful golf gamblers in the world. He has won six majors pre-tourney, including BOTH majors in 2023. He has won four times pre-tourney already this year with 35-1 longshots Justin Rose at Pebble Beach and Chris Kirk at The Honda Classic, as well as winning The Masters with Jon Rahm and the PGA Championship with Brooks Koepka. BT is the only sports gambler known to have completed the COVID Slam, winning all 4 golf majors within a 12 month period.