The Minimally Informed Man’s Guide to the PGA Championship

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 Warren Little / Getty Images


If there was ever a year to watch the PGA Championship, this is it—even if golf isn’t your thing. Here’s a quick-and-dirty guide to help you follow along.

The Basics

Beginning Aug. 9, 156 golfers will compete in the year’s fourth and final major championship, at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis. The top player will take home about $1.8 million—an absurd amount to lose on a putt.

Top Picks

No. 2-ranked reigning champ Justin Thomas has a good shot at defending his title, while Jordan Spieth—who hopes to clinch his career Grand Slam at Bellerive—poses a big threat. Over the past several weeks, however, Dustin Johnson, who’s currently ranked No. 1, has emerged as a favorite, after he tied for third at the 2018 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and, in late July, won the Canadian Open. Tiger Woods had a strong run at the British Open this year, tying for sixth, but the odds of him placing higher than that at Bellerive are slim.

Justin Thomas plays his shot from the sixth tee during the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational - Final Round at Firestone Country Club South Course on August 5, 2018 in Akron, Ohio.
Justin Thomas Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

The Underdog

Seven of the eight past champs have been first-time major winners. The trend could certainly continue, with Rickie Fowler hungry for his first big win, after taking second at the Masters, in April, losing by a stroke.