Betting Lines for the 2018 Ryder Cup – Latest Odds and Free Picks
Published on September 12, 2018
Just like that, we are set for Paris.
Tony was already on the brink of this selection last week, and apparently, rounds of 68-64-67-65 and his PGA Tour-high 11th top-10 finish didn’t hurt his chances. The importance of this final pick means we can start setting our sights on the festivities at Le Golf National in just two weeks’ time.
I already took a look at some potential Ryder Cup pairings last week, and now things are starting to become even more clear.
The biggest question remaining isn’t who is going to play with who and which players will play in which formats. It’s which side is going to go home with the Cup when it’s all said and done!
That’s why I am here today – to introduce some of the betting lines and offer you my initial thoughts.
It’s the part that many of you have been waiting for. It’s no longer necessary to go back and forth on who will make the team and debate what the rosters might look like. It’s time to talk business.
It’s time to take a look at some of the early wagers and prop bets available and offer my two cents.
Many of the players will still be trying to build momentum at the season-ending TOUR Championship next week in Atlanta.
But after that, it’s all about the 2018 Ryder Cup!
At an early glance, the online bookies and the casino operators in Vegas have given the United States team a significant edge. In fact, the gap has widened as of late, as Team USA opened as a -150 favorite to lift the Cup, while the European squad sat at +120.
Fast forward to the week before the TOUR Championship at East Lake and take a look at the most up-to-date line being offered by SportsBetting.ag, one of the most reputable sites in the market. Here are the odds on each team to lift the Ryder Cup.
In case you are getting confused between the meaning of lifting the Ryder Cup and winning the tournament, allow me to explain.
As far as what I think?
I think the extreme value attached to the European squad is far, far too big to ignore.
For starters, this match will be played on home turf for the Europeans, meaning one would think they should be the favorites. I understand that all 12 of the Americans reside in the top-25 of the Official World Golf Rankings (OWGR), but don’t you dare gloss over the accomplishments of team Europe.
Start at the very top, with the newly-crowned number-one player in the world, Justin Rose. But then you also have the world’s 5th, 6th, and 7th-ranked players (Francesco Molinari, Rory McIlroy, and Jon Rahm) in the team room as well.
In fact, take a peek at the entire European roster.
You won’t find a single player who doesn’t have what it takes to earn points in Paris, so I can promise you that the United States squad will have their hands full.
I don’t really see much of an advantage when it comes to the fourballs and singles sessions, but I do see a pretty big challenge that Jim Furyk and his men will have to overcome.
If the answer to this question is yes, then they’ll have a great chance at securing a victory.
However, everything on paper is leading me to believe that the European side has a definitive edge in the alternate shot format.
Because as a whole, the Europeans drive the ball much better than the Americans.
I mean, seriously. Go up and down Thomas Bjorn’s 12-man roster and find me one guy that doesn’t excel off the tee. There really aren’t any “wild drivers” of the golf ball, and they all hit the ball plenty far to compete at Le Golf National.
I doubt we’ll see Phil Mickelson appear in foursomes play, as he clocks in at 192nd out of 194 qualifying golfers in driving accuracy, having hit a putrid 51.94% of his fairways on the year. But guys like Tony Finau (176th), Patrick Reed (171st), and Justin Thomas (142nd) aren’t much better at finding fairways, either.
Give me guys like Henrik Stenson and Tommy Fleetwood, who continually wear out the center of the clubface and make a living out of playing from the short grass.
Due to the fact that the Americans tend to struggle in this format in general, I wouldn’t be surprised to see that happen again. Of course, USA came out of the gates guns blazing at Hazeltine in 2016, sweeping the opening sessions of foursomes 4-0.
But I think that Captain Furyk knows that if his team can just split the 8 available foursomes points 4-4, his team should be in a position to be the last ones standing.
Overall, this thing is so evenly matched that I don’t see any motive to want to lay a bunch of juice. For that reason, I’ll have to side with where the value is pointing.
Now, for another bet that is fairly intriguing once you start diving in and doing a bit of homework.
SportsBetting.ag is allowing us to place a wager on which golfer we believe will earn the most points for Captain Furyk and Team USA. Take a look at the odds here.
The key to placing this wager intelligently is to have a proper understanding of what kind of plan Jim Furyk and his assistant captains will have in place.
Now, have I been privy to conversations between Jim Furyk and Davis Love III? Am in the group text between assistant captains Steve Stricker, Matt Kuchar, Zach Johnson, and David Duval?
Of course not! Although that would be pretty cool if I was, huh?
I do, however, know enough about Jim Furyk and his philosophies that I’m starting to think that the likelihood of any player playing 5 matches isn’t very high. Of course, if a duo goes out and gets red-hot and dominates their matches, sure, Jim will probably continue rolling them out.
But there is enough depth on this lineup where I could see not a single player play 5 matches. Last time the Ryder Cup was played, in 2016, Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed were the only two to not get subbed out for Team USA.
Don’t be surprised to see Furyk adapt a similar viewpoint, as the 2016 captain, Davis Love III, is one of Jim’s assistants this year in Paris.
Perhaps Bryson gets it rolling and scoops up a handful of points. I like the fact that Rickie is versatile enough to play with multiple partners, although I’m not sure if his oblique injury is up for 36 holes in a day.
I could make a case for a few other players here, too, but it’s Tiger Woods who I feel is the strongest candidate. To be quite frank, the way Tiger has played recently, I wouldn’t really want to bet against him.
Plus, I know that if he wins a match in the morning, Furyk could have a harder time sitting him in the afternoon.
I’ll say Tiger goes 3-0-1 and his 3.5 points are the most of any American on the week, but I wouldn’t go crazy with this one.
Now let’s shift our attention to Team USA’s opponents.
The same bet is available on SportsBetting.ag for the European team as well. If you have an inkling on who is going to shine brightest for Thomas Bjorn at Le Golf National, go ahead and book the bet!
As you can see, this bet is pretty much a toss-up as well. One thing to be aware of is that Europe decided to play 5 of their players in all 5 matches in 2016, and four of those golfers are back on the 2018 roster (Stenson, Rose, McIlroy, Garcia).
So while I don’t expect Furyk to send out any of his men for all the matches, I fully anticipate Bjorn to not walk away with any regrets. That will likely mean we’ll see the likes of “Rors” and “Rosey” for all 5 matches again.
Depending on how things go, perhaps Ian Poulter or Jon Rahm receive the nod for every session. The consistency and brilliance of Francesco Molinari and Tommy Fleetwood make them wonderful candidates to go the distance as well.
But I like Rory as the guy to have the best shot at leading his team in points by the end of the week. Given that Bjorn can pair McIlroy with any member of the team, I like Rory’s chances at not only playing all the matches, but playing superbly.
The way he is swinging and putting right now, I sure as heck wouldn’t want to see his name on the other side of mine if I was an American.
We are officially getting close.
With just the TOUR Championship standing in the way of us and the 2018 Ryder Cup, my juices are already flowing. I can’t imagine how the 24 players who will be teeing it up in Paris feel as they get ready for the challenge, but I’m sure their excitement levels are through the roof.
This won’t be the last look I take at the matches, as there will be more props and more bets available as we get closer to the September 27th start date.
Where will you be when the Ryder Cup is taking place?
I’ll be watching all the drama unfold, and I’m hoping to cash in on the majority of my wagers. I’ll be releasing more tips and advice for betting the 2018 Ryder Cup over the next two weeks, so bookmark this page and make sure you don’t get left out of the loop!