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Archive for March, 2011

This is always an interesting event because it’s the week before the Masters.  Some players take the week off to rest and prepare for the Masters while others play Redstone Golf Club.  The course is actually designed similarly to Augusta which gives the players the same type of feel the week before the first major.  Last year I won by selecting Anthony Kim, this week I’m taking it easy to rest before next weeks Masters.  Gonna roll with these guys.

Matt Kuchar +1200 – 5 top tens and no wins yet this year.  I like Kooch again this week, he placed 8th last year at this even

Phil +1250 – Lefty as not won since the Masters.  Last year at the Houston Open he finished Sunday with 6 straight birdies, so he can play well here.  I like him winning which would set up a nice storyline for next weekend at Augusta.

Aaron Baddeley +3500 – He has 2 top tens (including a win at Riviera) and a very good 12th place last week.  People think he his last years Matt Kuchar, a player who had a promising career, which took some time to get going. He has made the cut at every Shell Houston Open.

Freddie Couples +3500 – He’s on the Champions Tour, but can still contend and loves Houston. The Houston Cougar alum has made 17 straight cuts here, won in 2003 and finished 3rd in ’09 and 4th in ’08.  He’s selective of which PGA events he plays, so he must have a lot confidence, he almost won at Riviera.  My long shot this week.

Good luck,

-SD

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Welcome to baseball season. I know Opening Day is always the last day of March, but this year it seems way too early.  Maybe because we are getting hit with snow on April 1st, the Masters is next weekend and the C’s and B’s are getting ready for the playoffs.  If you are a new reader to Big Rips, you should know that I am a Yankees fan.  Yep, blow me.  Everyone needs at least one friend who lives in Boston, but is introduced as “he’s a Yankee fan” as they sit in their seat when Youk hits a home run at Fenway.  That’s why I always bet overs when I go to a Sox games.  It’s a bitter sweet year for me. As one of my top five Yankees that I have followed in my lifetime has retired.  Andy Pettitte hung them up in the offseason, creating a gaping hole in the Yankees rotation, that Brian Cashman couldn’t even fill with Gabourey Sidibe.  What he did was drive around Queens and found fat Freddy Garcia and fatter Bartolo Colon eating at McDonalds, then signed them with a Big Mac and fries as incentives.  What an offseason for Cash, he whiffed on Crawford, Greinke and Cliff Lee, my vote for executive of the year.  He filled holes with guys who haven’t been good since the crack down on steroids and HGH such as Colon and Garcia then Kevin Millwood (4-16 in ’10), Eric Chavez (yes the ex-Oakland Athletic 3rd baseman who is making $12.5m) and Mark Prior.  I’m always a realist when it comes to the Yankees, this year the outlook is bleak.  So to make this unbearable season fun, I am doing what most Pittsburgh Pirate fans should do and that’s place some long-term bets.

O/U 15 1/2 regular season wins by John Lester I blogged a couple of weeks ago that My Guy is offering the O/U for Wins by any MLB pitcher, a few of us hammered this bet last year and won. I should have locked it in earlier, the line has now conveniently jumped to -200.  No worries I’ll just out smart him by winning loads of money on individual pitchers.  Lester has averaged 16.6 wins the last three years and now has a better lineup and defense behind him with Crawford, Jacoby and Nancy Crew, plus Gonzalez and Youk at the corners. I love this bet, taking the OVER of 15 1/2 wins by Lester.

O/U  20 1/2 Total Wins by any MLB pitcher (-200) – I still think this is free money, not going nuts like last year, doing it for the tradition we started.  Bet the OVER of 20 1/2 wins by any pitcher.

O/U  30 1/2 Home Runs by Ryan Braun – He had a down year last year with 25 dingers after hitting 34, 37 and 32 in the previous 3 seasons, more of a reason to like this bet.  I see a solid comeback from Braun, who said recently ” There’s no doubt in my mind I’m better than I’ve ever been at baseball” I wish I could say that about myself for gambling.  Bet the OVER of 30 1/2 home runs and put some money on Braun to win NL MVP +2250 .

NL Manager of the Year – I mentioned  that Pettitte is one of my all time favorite Yankees, the other 4 are Giambi (documented a lot last year when I tried getting him to my birthday party), Jeter, Mariano Rivera and Don Mattingly. Donnie Baseball is finally getting a shot as Manager and is taking over a very difficult situation in LA.  The McCourt divorce settlement is the headline story, not the team.  The Dodgers are coming into season with low expectations and the NL West has the defending champs.  We all know the NL West is major crap shoot and a team can win the division by winning 84 games.  They’ve got one of the best starting rotations, maybe enough to win the division and make Mattingly look like a genius.  The unsettled ownership could help his case too, if he can win.  Bet Donnie Baseball as NL Manager of the Year +1200, maybe we’ll see him in Cooperstown as a Manager someday.

O/U 76 1/2 Regular Season Wins Baltimore Orioles – Buck Showalter has already started to make enemies in the AL East, by talking some shit about Derek Jeter and Theo Epstein.  The guy is a notorious prick who players can either really love or hate.  If Buck is able to get this team off to a decent start I think the O’s can win about 80 games.  They signed some solid free agents like Vlad, Derek Lee, J.J Hardy and Mark Reynolds.The pitching is young and suspect, they don’t have a # 1 guy.  If they start slow and the players turn on Buck, then look out  for 100+ loses.

Good luck this season,

-SD



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On road, here is what we got on this game..

VCU/Kansas under 146.5 – 700 – I think this is too high. I think Kansas is going to crush these guys. VCU beating FSU was ridiciculous. they were crushed on the glass by 17 and the noles had something like 22 more shots. No way, they are going to  beat Kansas and no way they are going to even Sniff 65 points.

Kansas -11 over VCU – 300

already locked in UNC

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I’m getting to the point where I might blindfold myself, put some faces of PGA players on a dartboard and toss darts to pick my golfers.  The problem is that I don’t own a dartboard and at the rate I am hitting my PGA bets, I won’t be able to afford one by the summer.  Tere is no fucking way I would have put Gary Woodland’s face on there last week for the Transitions Championship.  If you don’t know, some 3rd year no-name guy – Gary Woodland  – won last week, continuing the trend of players we don’t give  a shit about this year that have won.  Last weekend was a small time tourney, plus the 2nd (or is it third round now?) of the  NCAA tournament was going on so no one cared.  This week the PGA tour stops in Orlando Florida at Bay Hill for Arnies event, the defending champ is Ernie Els.  Bay Hill is owned and Designed by the King, who waits at the 18th every year on Sunday and congratulates the winner as they walk off.  By the end of the day he is usually half shit faced because he’s been drinking Arnold Palmers and Kettle One mixes for 6 hours.  It’s a great event and was the toughest non-major course played in 2010.  Tiger has won SIX times, I kinda hope he wins this year because Arnie is due for a Joe Namath/Suzy Kolber “I want to kiss you moment” with Tiger. Gonna roll with these guys…

 

Graeme McDowell +1500 -3 Top tens in 4 rounds this year, his average score per round is 69.  Missed the Cut last year at Bay Hill

Justin Rose +2500 – I was leaning towards putting one bet in this week and it would have been on Rose.  Rose should have won last week, but he shot a 74 on Sunday.  He’s made the cut in every round he’s placed this year and has 6 top 25s.  MC last year.

Bubba Watson +2500– He’s been hurt this year and WD two weeks ago.  He is by far the best golfer to watch right now when he is on. Hopefully Bubba played good this week.

Vijay Singh +3500 – The Big Curry is playing like his 2008 self when he won the FedEx Cup.  Veej won at Bay Hill in 2007 and also owns a 3rd, 2nd (2X), 7th, 4th, 11th, 13th and a 15th.  He’s the second best at this event behind Tiger, he has his game going.  Could see a big bet from me Masters weekend

Zach Johnson +3500 – The former Masters Champ is pretty average 6 events played 6 cuts made, best finish is just 20th.  One of the best putters on the Tour, but is good off the tee, which could hurt him at Bay Hill . Came in 3rd at Bay Hill in 2009.

Edoardo Molinari +4000 – My long shot only lost by 2 strokes to Els last year.  I think he is the better of the two Molinari brothers.  Played really well in the Ryder Cup last fall.

Good luck

-SD

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I got the monkey off my back last week by picking Nick Watney (Heid Watney’s cousin) at the Blue Monster for my first golf winner of 2011.  This week the PGA TOUR stops in Tampa for the Transitions Championship at The Copperhead Course, it’s a Larry Packard design.  I don’t remember ever watching this event, probably because it coincides with first weekend of the NCAA tournament.  Over the last 5 years The Copperhead course ranks as one of the most difficult courses on tour.  It’s very narrow and plays difficult with a lot of elevated greens and tee boxes.  For some reason ‘older’ players do well, 5 players over the age of 38 have won here.  I’m not going nuts this weekend on golf, most of my focus will be on hoops. Gonna roll with these guys…

Paddy Harrington +2400 – How about some Irish luck for St. Patrick’s day weekend.  Paddy finished 10th at the Blue Monster and had a top ten finish last year here.

KJ Choi +3000 – Always very consistent and plays well on narrow courses, plus is Choi is one of the best approach players with good Greens In Regulation stats.  He has made 4/5 cuts this year and finished 2nd at Copperhead in 2010.

Brian Gay +4750 – B.Gay has two top 5s this year and took last week off at Doral for needed rest, sleeper pick

Stewart Cink +5000 – He has been on a cold streak and missed the CUT at last years Transition Championship, but Larry Packard also designed Turnberry where Cink won the British Open, I’ll take him as a long shot.  Finished 3rd in ’05 and 2nd last year.

Good luck,

-SD

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I applied for WGC Cadillac Championship press credentials, the PGA Tour allows bloggers. I read if you want to be accepted, it’s best to apply for press credentials at less popular events, such as the Travelers Championship in Hartford or the Viking Classic in Madison, Mississippi.  I hate Hartford and don’t feel like sweating my nuts off, mid July, in Mississippi while I follow Brett Quigley and Lee Janzen around.  I assume the Masters would be nearly impossible and I like Miami this time of the year, plus the field is stacked with the best players.  So why not make a bid for Big Rips to cover a WGC event at The Blue Monster?  I never heard back, so either one of two things happened…1) Some intern spilled coffee on my application or 2) I missed a deadline.  I’m seriously going to pursue getting credentials for a PGA event, I’ll be sipping Arnie Palmers (with vodka) until 4am with Anthony Kim before you know it.

The TPC Blue Monster is a Dick Wilson course and gets the nickname because all of the potential water hazards on 18.  It was the tenth toughest hole on the Tour last year.  It has an intimidating nickname, but it’s a fairly easy course, the defending champion Ernie Els shot minus -18 last year.  Like I said before, the field is stacked.  Most of the same players from the WGC Match play, 63 of the Worlds top Golfers, are playing this week. Making it even more difficult for me to pick my first winner of 2011.  This time last year I had picked three winners already.  There has been zero consistency this year and the winners circle is made up of the most random group:  Rory Sabbatini, Luke Donald, Aaron Baddeley, D.A. Points, Bubba Watson, Jhonattan Vegas, Mark Wilson (2x) and Jonathan Byrd.  It would be smart to bet the Field +125, but that’s a pussy bet. I think a big name drives home the Caddy this weekend, gonna roll with these guys…

Tiger Woods +1000 – If he is going to win before the Masters and get back to normal this would be the event he should do it at.  He’s won at Doral SIX times.  He’s paired the first two days with Phil and Graeme McDowell for the feature group.  There is a lot working against Tiger.  McDowell is in his head after pissing on him at the Chevron Championship and he is changing his swing.  Too hard not to bet Tiger, he’s the modern day Greg Norman at Doral.

Nick Watney +1600 – I don’t like betting the ‘sexy’ pick and Watney is that this week.  He shorted a putt by an inch, on 18 in a ’09 duel with Phil that would have put the match in OT.  Everyone is expecting him to win this year, I like Watney at the Masters, small play this week.

Matt Kuchar +1800 – Kooch played well last weekend at the Honda.  He has 4 top tens in 5 starts, plus he finished 3rd last year at the Monster, a safe play.

Bill Haas +2250 – Billy finished 6th last year and is off to a hot 2011 with 4 top 12 finishes.

Rory Mcilroy +2800 – Is a whiny cunt who quit the US Tour, because he was home sick last year and missed his girlfriend while playing in the states.  This is a World Golf Championship (WGC event) and he is selective with what US events he plays.  He didn’t play TPC Sawgrass, because he hates Peter Dye designs.  You can’t deny his talent, finished 20th in ’09.

Bubba Watson +3500 – No feeling and didn’t research.  Just a gut feeling and a fan bet.

Robert Allenby +4500 – For some reason Aussies win a lot at Doral.  Four Australian born players have won here, Steve Elkington (2x), Geoff Ogilvy, Greg Norman (3x)  and Craig Parry.  Finished 11th last year and 3rd in 2007, my sleeper pick.

Good luck,

-SD

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A great week last week with the WGC-Match Play.  Every day was like a Sunday, plus I was able to win some money thanks to Luke Donald, Martin Kaymer and Bubba Watson. This week the Tour moves from the Left Coast to the southeast for a month before the Masters.  I can’t wait for the Masters, I wonder if my local thrift store has any used green blazers.

The PGA National Champion Course hosts the Honda Classic, 2006 winner Luke Donald (who also won the WGC-Match play last week), is a very the popular pick.  Jack Nicklaus redesigned the course in 1990 and reconfigured holes 15, 16 & 17, which is infamously known as the “Bear Trap”.  You’ll hear Johnny Miller talk about how tough the Trap is over and over this week.  Last year the stretch of 15,16, 17 was the 2nd hardest stretch for any course and 14,15, 16 was the 3rd most difficult.  It’s so difficult that there were 137 water balls between these holes last year.   There hasn’t been that many balls hit into the water since the Par 3 “Waterloo” hole at the 2009 Duceman Invitational.  Here is how the Trap stacks up.

15th hole Par 3 – 179 yards

Not a very long hole, but Palm Beach winds kick up her and are very unpredictable.  It can be still on the tee but swirling 20 mph by the green.  I’d probably make it on the green every 1/50 tee shots.

16th hole Pat 4 – 434 yards

The right side is trouble, players have no room for error, there is plenty of bunker and water for your ball to go into.  If you play it safe to the left hand side you’ll be stuck with a 220 yard second shot over a water guarded green.  I’d probably pick up on this hole

17th hole Par 3 – 190 yards

To make it through the ‘Bear Trap’ you need to get by one more par 3.  Basically the entire green is guarded by water, players who play it safe and aim right, still have a difficult time getting up and down for par.   Jack’s an asshole.

The field is really competitive with a ton of foreigners playing the event, it includes Rory Mcilroy, Graeme McDowell, Ian Poulter, YE Yang and defending champion Camillo Villegas.  A lot of great players to choose from, gonna roll with these guys…

Matt Kuchar + 1250 – This could be his week, Kooch is way over due. He finished in the top 10, 4 times this year. Career versus the Trap, 12 rounds +8.

Vijay Singh +2000 – I bet on Veej last year at the Honda and he came in 4th.  He has two top 5s this year and is one of the players ‘due’ to win.  Career versus the Bear Trap, 4 rounds +2.

Robert Allenby +2500 – Does very well at the Honda, he has 4 top 5s at this event.  Career versus the Trap, 14 rounds, +8.

Anthony Kim +3500 – I’m a little nervous because he withdrew from the Northern Trust open with an injury and he sucked last week. But AK came in second last year, so I like his odds. Career at the Trap, 12 rounds +14 (holy shit that sucks).

Brian Gay +4000 – Two top 5 finishes, one was at Riviera. Career versus the Bear Trap, 6 rounds +1.

Ross Fisher +4000 – A long shot, no data at the Honda, a very good player though.

Good luck!

-SD

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