Just two weeks after the last one finished with the Tour Championship, the new 2018-19 PGA Tour season gets under way at the Safeway Open, Phil Casey writes.
The event also comes just days after the Ryder Cup and it is no surprise that only one player has made the journey from Paris to Silverado Golf Resort in California, Phil Mickelson part of a field which traditionally features a number of players from the Web.com Tour.
Mickelson was eighth in 2016 and third last year, but was quite frankly woeful at Le Golf National and with the long journey also to consider, he does not make our list of selections.
And as with this week’s European Tour event, we’re going to side with a player seeking a hat-trick of wins at an attractive price, namely 40/1 shot Brendan Steele.
Steele’s overall course figures are an impressive 21-17-1-1 but his price is understandable given that his sole top-10 on the PGA Tour in 2018 came back in February and that he has missed the cut in four of his last five starts.
However, Steele was hardly in stellar form 12 months ago before claiming back-to-back titles and that price is just too big to ignore.
Sticking with former winners of the event, Argentina’s Emiliano Grillo is our second selection as he looks to claim his second PGA Tour title.
Grillo recorded six top-10 finishes last season, including in one of the FedEx Cup play-off events, and as well as his win at Silverado in 2015, the 26-year-old was tied fifth after 54 holes last year before a poor final round. Grillo can be backed at 25/1 each-way.
As mentioned earlier, these early-season events are popular with players who have just graduated from the Web.com Tour and our final selection is Denny McCarthy, who won the Web.com Tour Championship recently.
McCarthy said focusing on trying to win tournaments, rather than simply regaining his Tour card, paid off and he can backed each-way at 45/1.
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