This article is part of our Golf Picks series.
Rocket Mortgage Classic Betting Preview
Golfers will remain in the Midwest for another week as the Tour travels to Michigan for the fourth installment of the Rocket Mortgage Classic at Detroit Golf Club.
Just two weeks remain in the regular season, so golfers will be jockeying for position in an effort to secure a spot in the FedEx Cup Playoffs. World No. 4 and tournament favorite Patrick Cantlay, at 8-1 odds, headlines a field that includes five of the top 20 players in the Official World Golf Ranking. Last year, long shot Cam Davis -- at 150-1 odds -- surged late to capture his first PGA Tour win in a playoff victory over Troy Merritt and Joaquin Niemann.
Detroit Golf Club has yielded some low scores in its brief tenure as a Tour track, with each of the three winners finishing 18-under-par or better. The course is a traditional par-72 setup at approximately 7,300 yards, and we won't see some of the big numbers we saw at the 3M Open, as water only comes into play on only one hole. The course's biggest defense are the narrow and tree-lined fairways that will make accuracy more important than distance off the tee. Different styles can find success here -- the long-hitting Davis played the par-5s at 12-under en route to victory, but golfers can also play precision golf and attack the short-to-medium length par-4s, four of which play under 400 yards.
We'll see a lot of approaches from inside 150 yards, so ultimately I'm targeting birdie-makers, strong wedge players and those who excel from tee to green.
All odds via DraftKings Sportsbook as of 3:00 PM ET Tuesday.
Best in the Birdie Business
The following golfers, with a minimum of eight rounds played, have averaged the most birdies per round at Detroit Golf Club.
- Nate Lashley: 5.5
- Brian Stuard: 5.3
- Cam Davis: 5.1
- Kevin Kisner: 5.0
- Doc Redman: 5.0
- Cameron Tringale: 5.0
The inaugural winner of this event, Lashley, tops the list, but he missed the cut on the number each of the last two years. His only top-10 this season came in an alternate-field event this spring, so he does not come in on a roll. However, at 180-1 odds, he is worth considering and at the least makes for a low-cost DFS option if you like the course history angle. After a disappointing missed cut last week, Tringale's price dropped from 18-1 to 40-1. While the veteran has never won, he's much more attractive in this price range. Tringale has shown an affinity for Detroit GC with finishes of T5, T30 and T14, and last year he closed with rounds of 68-66. Normally a reliable putter, Tringale lost five strokes on the greens over his two rounds last week, so he should be more of a factor if he can right the ship on the putting surface.
Trending Up in Tee-to-Green
These five players, on a per-round basis, gained the most strokes from tee to green over their last 20 rounds.
Finau was emerging prior to the 3M Open, and he now has a win and two runners-up over his last nine starts. He has done that despite ranking 142nd in Strokes Gained: Putting this season. He's making his second trip to Detroit after finishing T53 in his lone start, and the main question is simply how motivated he will be right after winning. He's the third choice on the board at 14-1. Not far behind him on that list is Young, who is having a phenomenal rookie season. He posted four top-3 finishes in his last seven starts, two of which came in major championships. He's done it with dominant driving play, trailing only Jon Rahm in SG: Off-the-Tee. Young is also eighth in Birdie-or-Better Percentage, which should help in his first Rocket Mortgage Classic appearance.
Rocket Mortgage Classic Bets: Outright Picks
Max Homa (14-1)
Homa is my preferred choice among the top options on the board. He has developed into one of the better players in the world, winning twice this season and jumping up to No. 20 in the OWGR. Homa has made the cut in both his appearances in Detroit and is gaining over a stroke per round off the tee and on approach combined.
Matt Kuchar (50-1)
Kuchar is making his first trip to Detroit Golf Club, and this should be a great course fit for him considering driving distance isn't a major factor. He has played a light schedule recently, so he will be fresh. Plus, he's been in the mix a couple times this year, finishing one shot out of a playoff at Harbour Town and two back at the Valero.
Russell Henley (55-1)
We haven't heard much from Henley in a while, which results in some excellent value as the 20th choice on the board. That's surprising considering the field thins out quickly behind the top options. Henley's last three appearances were in major championships, and none of those yielded fruitful results. However, he has recorded four top-15s in 2022, including a runner-up at the Sony Open.
Rocket Mortgage Classic Bets: Top-10 Wagers
Joohyung Kim (5-1)
The 20-year-old is already up to 39th in the world, thanks in no small part to him making the cut in 5-of-6 PGA Tour events this summer, including a third-place finish at the Scottish Open. His biggest asset is his accuracy off-the tee -- he would rank fifth on Tour but does not qualify with only 18 measured rounds -- and he's also gaining over half a shot per round from tee to green.
Nick Taylor (8-1)
Taylor has three top-20s but no top-10s this year, which is surprising for someone who ranks in the black in SG: Tee-to-Green. He has struggled with the driver, but that shouldn't be a big deterrent this week. Taylor has made the cut both times he has traveled to Detroit GC.
Tyler Duncan (11-1)
Duncan is also in search of his first top-10 this year, but that doesn't mean he isn't playing well, as he recorded three top-15s over his last 10 starts. He also ranks well in a couple of key metrics this week, including SG: Tee-to-Green (44th) and driving accuracy (11th).
Rocket Mortgage Classic Bets: Head-to-Head Matchups
After winding up on the right side of both one-on-one matchups at the 3M Open, I'll look to keep the momentum rolling with Hadwin, who is solid in all facets of the game outside of driving distance. As noted, that shouldn't hold him back in Detroit, and he does have a T4 finish here. Meanwhile, McCarthy relies heavily on his short game and missed the cut here last year.
I'm willing to lay the extra money against Dahmen, who hasn't shown much this summer, recording just one top-30 finish over seven events. I like List to take advantage of the par-5s like the last two winners here did. List played well at the Travelers and Memorial before struggling on the links in Scotland, and he finished T21 in his last stop here in 2020.