The GOLF.com PGA expert picks to win are in. Tiger Woods is the favorite but there’s plenty of firepower heading to the Black Course at Bethpage State Park. The 101st PGA Championship begins on Thursday.
PGA expert picks to win
Jessica Marksbury, multimedia editor (@Jess_Marksbury): Brooks Koepka. The dude has either won or finished second in three of the last four majors, and he’s placed no worse than T13 in eight of the last nine he’s played. That’s remarkable. And thanks to this recent spat with Brandel Chamblee, he now has a new motivating chip on his shoulder. To top it all off, long and super-tough Bethpage Black just seems like a good fit for him. I’m all in on BK.
Josh Sens, contributor (@JoshSens): Koepka. For all the reasons Jess lays out. It all sets up for a striking contrast: a rowdy New York crowd going bonkers as Koepka goes about his stoic business, cutting the Black Course down to size.
Jonathan Wall, equipment editor (@jonathanrwall): Xander Schauffele. X is making a habit out of contending on golf’s biggest stage. He’s now finished T6 or better in three of his last four major starts following a runner-up showing at the Masters. I believe he’ll get a couple of major titles during his career. It starts this week at Bethpage.
Michael Bamberger, senior writer: Brooks Koepka. Best player in the world, and on hard courses only better. Long, wet course in breezy, cool conditions? No problem for this tough hombre.
Pat Ralph, associate editor (@Pat_Ralph): Brooks Koepka. Buy me a ticket on the Koepka bandwagon. He’s been playing his best on the biggest stages, and his game seems suited to survive and win at Bethpage. If Koepka can take care of business on the greens, the Wanamaker Trophy is his.
Sean Zak, associate editor (@sean_zak): Long, brutal course in the northeast? Dominated by driving and avoiding the rough? Everything is coming up Dustin Johnson for this one. WOW, Sean, the No. 1 player in the world? Yep! DJ gets out to a first-round lead with a 69. Adds to it each of the next two rounds. Then holds on for dear life on Sunday.
Alan Bastable, executive editor (@alan_bastable): Sergio! JK, Brooks. His last nine major finishes, beginning with the 2019 Masters, are just silly: T2-1-T39-1-T13-T6-1-T11-T4. Why would you stop betting against him now? Also, thanks to Chamblee, a chip the size of Long Island is squarely back on Brooks’s shoulder. He will be dangerous.
Jeff Ritter, digital development editor (@Jeff_Ritter): I might regret picking against Brooks or DJ, but I’ll go with Rickie Fowler to win this one. He has four top 10s in his last eight majors, and surely he’s going to remove himself from the “Best Without a Major” list soon…right? NYC fans love him, and maybe they’ll help carry him to a breakthrough title.
Dylan Dethier, associate editor (@Dylan_Dethier): Tiger Woods. I just don’t think there’s anyone better at managing a golf course. Bethpage will reward precision with irons and creativity around the greens, and it will also require players not beating themselves. Woods is back to being elite at all three of those, and I can’t shake the feeling that for one big event at a challenging golf course, he’s back to being at the top of the game.
Luke Kerr-Dineen, instruction editor (@LukeKerrDineen): Jason Day. I’m guessing this tournament will be a kind of U.S. Open-PGA Championship crossover event, which makes Jason Day the perfect pick. Day has an impressive slate of finishes on long and difficult U.S. Open courses (which will come in handy around Bethpage this week) and he’s a past champion of the PGA. A recent uptick in form coming into the event makes him a hard proposition to ignore.
Josh Berhow, senior editor (@Josh_Berhow): No need to get cute with this one. Brooks Koepka brings his best during major weeks and I have long thought this course sets up beautifully for him. Koepka wins major No. 4 on Sunday night.
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