The U.S. Open returns to Oakmont Country Club in Pennsylvania, and the world’s best come in playing well.
1. Jason Day
Jason Day’s best seems just a little bit better these days than everyone else that tees it up. Jason Day has won 3 of the last 7 tournaments he’s entered. He can bomb it all over the course, but he has all the tools to win a U.S. Open. He comes in as the favorite.
2. Jordan Spieth
Word is the greens are going to be fast. Who is the world’s best putter? It is Jordan Spieth, who already has a U.S. Open title to his credit. For a player that some said was struggling some this year, Spieth has already won twice. Spieth won’t mind of the greens are fast. He’s won a Masters too, and knows how to play lightening quick greens.
3. Rory Mcilory
Rory Mcilory seems to be rounding into form. He recently won the Irish Open, and has 4 top 10 finishes in his last 5 starts. He’s already won a U.S. Open. Mcilory hasn’t quite played with Day’s consistency this year, but when he’s on there’s nobody better in the world.
4. Adam Scott
Adam Scott is just outside the big 3. He has a major. He’s won twice this year, and he is a definite threat to win at Oakmont. He has top 10′s in his last 2 U.S. Opens. I think you will Scott make an appearance on the leaderboard this week.
5. Dustin Johnson
Dustin Johnson is arguably the most naturally gifted in the world. He can over-power any course he plays on, but he is still seeking his first major. For Johnson it is all between the ears. He could win the tournament by 6 shots, or shoot 80 in the final round with a final round 5 shot lead. His play at the St. Jude Classic this week was solid.
6. Matt Kuchar
Here’s is a player that would seem to have a game just make for a U.S. Open. Kuchar is accurate off the tee, and has 6 straight top 30 finishes. In those top 30 finishes are 4 top 15 results. It just would seem right if Kuchar doesn’t eventually get a major to his name. He is currently ranked 16th in the world.
7. Phil Mickelson
Will Phil Mickelson ever get that elusive U.S. Open title? He’s had a consistent year with multiple top 10s, and he’s in the top 10 in scoring average. Phil Mickelson is still one of the top 20 golfers in the world. If there is a concern it is his 167th ranked driving accuracy. He’ll need to drive it better to have shot. Mickelson has 6 2nd place U.S. Open finishes.
8. Justin Rose
Justin Rose hasn’t won this year, but he is a former U.S. Open winner, and guess what – the last time the U.S. Open was held at Oakmont in 2007 he finished in the top 10. With 6 top 20s this year, Rose is in the right form to make a run at his 2nd U.S. Open. If his his back is fully healed, it has been a bit balky the last few weeks, he has a great to shot to get into contention.
9. Sergio Garcia
Sergio Garcia has made runs at U.S. Opens before. He has 9 top 25s and 4 top 10s. Like Dustin Johnson, it is not a matter of talent with Garcia – it’s all mental. He’s one of the best ball strikers in the world, and here is why he might have a shot. A recent win the Byron Nelson should give him a boost of confidence.
10. Rickie Fowler
The 10 position here is typically my darkhorse spot. I’ll be honest I don’t like the way Rickie Fowler comes in playing. He missed recent cuts The Players and the Memorial. His play has been erratic this year. The U.S. Open isn’t typically the kind of course that you find your game. I just think it might be time for Fowler’s season to get a charge. He’s played well in U.S. Opens and majors in the past. If he can get off to an early quick start, that might be enough to give Fowler the boost of confidence he needs to contend. We know the potential is there.