Open market still expects 'name' winner

By Jeff Fogle  (VSiN City newsletter) 

July 19, 2018 11:33 PM

Global favorite entering Round 2 of the British Open is…JON RAHM???!!! Surprising first day launches Rahm, Rory McIlroy, and Rickie Fowler to the top of the odds chart. Plus, Cubs open second stage of MLB season with high scoring win over the Cards. Time to close out another busy week in VSiN City!

British Open: Though longshots lead the way at Carnoustie, market still expects a “name” winner

Pre-tournament favorite Dustin Johnson only outperformed 20 golfers in a huge field with a 5-over par 76 on day one of the 2018 British Open. DJ fell WAY off the map in terms of championship hopefuls. 

The top of the leader board was full of long shots who thrilled for a day. Come Sunday, the Betfair exchange is still expecting someone high up in the world golf rankings to finish on top. Here’s a listing of prices as of publication deadlines. First, the five golfers who have created some market distance from the rest of the field. 

Jon Rahm: risk $1 to win $10, risk $1 to win $10.50 on “no”

Rory McIlroy: risk $1 to win $11, risk $11.50 to win $1 on “no”

Rickie Fowler: risk $1 to win $14.50, risk $15 to win $1 on “no”

Justin Thomas: $1 to win $15.50, risk $16 to win $1 on “no”

Tony Finau: risk $1 to win $16, risk $17 to win $1 on “no”

Rahm is currently ranked #5 in the world, though he’s often failed to play to media and market expectations under the major tournament spotlight. McIlroy is ranked #8, Fowler #7, and Thomas #2. 

Other contenders not too far out of the picture…

Kevin Kisner: $1 to win $24, risk $29 to win $1 on “no”

Alex Noren: $1 to win $26, risk $27 to win $1 on “no”

Francesco Molinari: $1 to win $27, risk $29 to win $1 on “no”

Tiger Woods: $1 to win $29, risk $31 to win $1 on “no”

Henrick Stenson: $1 to win $29, risk $31 to win $1 on “no”

Justin Rose: risk $1 to win $33, risk $35 to win $1 on “no”

Jordan Spieth: risk $1 to win $35, risk $37 to win $1 on “no”

Brooks Koepka: $1 to win $39, risk $41 to win $1 on “no”

Tommy Fleetwood: risk $1 to win $47, risk $49 to win $1 on “no”

By the time you read this, the second round will be well under way in Scotland. Click here to follow live updates from the Betfair exchange all through the day. Remember that the blue column reflects odds to win…just subtract one from what you see to get the return (a “20” in blue means the golfer is 19/1 to win). The pink column is for betting that a player WON’T win (a “20” in pink means you have to lay 19 to win 1 that the player won’t win the tournament).

We had a lot of fun with this Thursday on “A Numbers Game” as Jonathan Von Tobel and VSiN City continued filling in for Gill Alexander. We expect you’ll enjoy following live odds on that link all through the final hole Sunday. 

MLB Thursday: Cubs beat Cards in 9-6 slugfest

That’s 15 runs on 28 hits and 4 errors in a wild return to the diamond for Major League Baseball. 

Chicago Cubs (-150) 9, St. Louis 6 

Total Bases Plus Walks: St. Louis 24, Chicago 21

Starting Pitchers: Martinez 5 IP, 5 ER, Hendricks 4.2 IP, 3 ER

Bullpen: St. Louis 3 IP, 3 ER, Chicago 4.1 IP, 2 ER

We mentioned on the show yesterday and in the newsletter that both pitchers had worse xFIP numbers than ERA. That sure played out here, with Martinez and Hendricks combined to allow eight earned runs in just under 10 innings of work. Sharps had been pounding the Over all day. The closing number of 9.5 is high for a night game at Wrigley Field, but not high enough for how this one played out. 

Note that St. Louis won Total Bases plus Walks. Graded out to a 5-4 win for the visitors (just divide TB W by four to get a rudimentary “runs created” estimate). Chicago clustered its bases better, keyed by a 5-run fifth inning. Three Cardinals errors didn’t help in run prevention either.

Chicago moves to 56-38 on the season to build a three-game lead over the Milwaukee Brewers atop the NL Central. St. Louis falls to 48-47, with work to do to get back into the Wildcard picture.

The rest of MLB resumes play Friday. Marquee series this week include Atlanta at Washington, the Los Angeles Dodgers at Milwaukee, Colorado at Arizona, Houston at the Los Angeles Angels, the NY Mets at the NY Yankees, and San Francisco at Oakland.   

CFL: Double-digit favorite Hamilton stunned at home by Saskatchewan

It’s been awhile since we had a high-scoring game on a Thursday night. We had points, but not necessarily offense in this week’s shocker. Both teams had a punt return touchdown. 

Saskatchewan (plus 10) 31 Hamilton 20 

Total Yardage: Saskatchewan 396, Hamilton 263

Yards-per-Play: Saskatchewan 7.3, Hamilton 6.1

Rushing Yards: Saskatchewan 218, Hamilton 79

Passing Stats: Saskatchewan 19-25-0-178, Hamilton 20-28-1-184

Turnovers: Saskatchewan 0, Hamilton 4

Surprisingly dominant win for the Roughriders, even if the final score should have been more like 24-13. Clear edges up and down the stat box before you get to the 4-0 turnover rout. If Saskatchewan wasn’t treading lightly with a backup quarterback, it would have won even bigger. Slow and steady won the race because the Tiger-Cats kept imploding. 

Saskatchewan actually sweeps the season series despite being an underdog both games. Roughriders move to 3-2 despite losing to horrible Montreal. Tiger-Cats fall to 2-3 despite scoring impressive wins over Edmonton and Winnipeg. 

This weekend’s remaining schedule…

Friday: British Columbia (plus 7) at Ottawa

Saturday: Winnipeg (-2) at Toronto

Saturday: Montreal at Calgary (no line pending QB status for both teams)

Thursday WNBA: Las Vegas Aces shock Phoenix, Taurasi!

Improvement is coming quickly for the Las Vegas Aces. Another statement win Thursday with a road upset of Diana Taurasi and Phoenix. That was the third of three games on the card. We’ll run the numbers in rotation order… 

Atlanta (-7) 82, New York 68

2-point Pct: New York 45%, Atlanta 33%

3-pointers: New York 5/18, Atlanta 9/30

Free Throws: New York 11/15, New York 17/25

Rebounds: New York 35, Atlanta 49

Turnovers: New York 19, Atlanta 12

We talked the other day about how “recent form” scenarios have been holding for a long time for several teams. True here in both cases. New York is still battling chemistry issues, falling to 5-12 against the spread their last 17 games. Straight up record is a very disappointing 7-16 on the season. Atlanta has covered six in a row, and is 8-1 ATS its last nine. Full season record is 14-9.

New York did improve its defense after playing like a sieve vs. Elizabeth Cambage and Dallas the other day. But, rebounding and turnovers were disasters. Great hustle stats for the hosts even though shots weren’t falling. 

Dallas (-4) 90, Washington 81

2-point Pct: Washington 45%, Dallas 46%

3-pointers: Washington 7/28, Dallas 7/18

Free Throws: Washington 12/13, Dallas 25/35

Rebounds: Washington 37, Dallas 41

Turnovers: Washington 9, Dallas 13

Dallas stays red hot, as does Cambage. This win/cover brings the ATS mark to 12-3 the last 15 games. Straight up record is 14-9. Washington falls to 13-10 on the season in the weaker East, and is 1-3 ATS its last four games. Cambage really attacks the basket, then drains her free throws. You can see Dallas was plus 13 points from the line in a game it only won by nine. 

Las Vegas (plus 8) 85, Phoenix 82

2-point Pct: Las Vegas 40%, Phoenix 40%

3-pointers: Las Vegas 3/10, Phoenix 8/29

Free Throws: Las Vegas 22/24, Phoenix 22/24

Rebounds: Las Vegas 39, Phoenix 41

Turnovers: Las Vegas 9, Phoenix 15


Looks like turnovers were the difference maker. Las Vegas didn’t win any other stats. Points off those extra possessions were enough to get over the top for the upset, and double digit cover. Aces are now 11-13 on the season, 4-1 ATS their last five games. They had showed some clear market edges over the East. This was a big win on the road against a Western power. Phoenix falls to 15-9 straight up, but is still 6-3 ATS its last nine games. 

Our latest update of estimated “market” Power Ratings for the WNBA…

85: Minnesota, Los Angeles, Seattle 

82: Phoenix, Dallas

81: Washington

79: Connecticut, Atlanta

77: Las Vegas

74: New York, Chicago

73: Indiana

Have a great weekend. See you again Monday. Thanks to everyone who tuned into “A Number Game” this week!

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