The PGA Tour heads north for this week’s 3M Open in Blaine, Minnesota. Formerly a PGA Champions Tour event with a tenure dating back to 1993, it recently changed hands to the younger firecrackers. So, as much as I yearn to see the 2018 winner (then known as the 3M Championship), Kenny Perry’s diadem draw, he will be manning the grill this week.
Who will Post-It low?
After admitting he was a bit of a dud at the Travelers Championship two weeks ago, Brooks Koepka (+775) headlines as one of the favorites. He will be well rested with plenty of gun powder to put on quite the show. Is the stage big enough for Koepka’s Chrysanthemum or must we wait to be dazzled until Brooks battles the final major tournament of the year in two weeks?
Nate Lashley (+8000) is fresh off an emotional win and his first PGA Tour victory at the Rocket Mortgage Classic. Lashley never wilted down the stretch last week, and look for him to continue to impress this week.
Jason Day (+1000) was back in the mix last month as he finished tied for eighth at the Travelers. The former top-ranked player in the world is improving weekly and due to get back on top. We all know the ignition switch is there, but can Day light up the night in Sunday celebration?
You can’t mention fireworks without Patrick Reed (+2200) and his wedge-snapping thighs. Reed’s disappointing U.S. Open led to a terrific tantrum that ended with one less club in the bag and sub-par weekend golfers empathizing. Unfortunately he’s more likely to show up at your parent’s cookout empty handed and eat all the hot dogs, so I’d suggest avoiding him this week.
The shortest fuse, but the biggest POW
Rory Sabbatini (+3300) is the experienced 43-year-old South African turned Slovakian who has recently exhibited firepower of his own. Sabbatini has resurrected his golfing career this year, both at the U.S. Open (tied for 43rd, with a sweet hole-in-one) and with a strong finish at the Rocket Mortgage Classic (tied for third). Last year’s leftover box of Snap ‘N Pops will go to Sabbatini in hopes of an unexpected late BOOM’er. He’s worth the reach and offers maximum bang for your buck.
When the match meets the twine…
Hideki Matsuyama (+1100) hasn’t missed a cut in his last 24 starts (the longest active PGA streak) and is prime for a 2019 breakthrough explosion. Matsuyama has already posted eye-twinkling rounds this year and is following up a solid outing in Detroit, where he tied for 13th. The man from Japan is my pick to make the most noise in Minnesota, asserting his independence as he separates from the field.