The Pick August 18 2022-1

We went against world No. 13 Taylor Fritz earlier in the Western & Southern Open. He quickly took our money in a 55-minute rout over world No. 35 Sebastian Baez. Sometimes it feels impossible to cash a bet when backing somebody you didn’t believe in mere days ago, but the reality is that Fritz has put all injury concerns to bed in Cincinnati all week. Now, the American will look to continue playing some outstanding tennis in a quarterfinal match against world No. 1 Daniil Medvedev.

Since earning that easy win over Baez, Fritz has defeated world No. 28 Nick Kyrgios and world No. 8 Andrey Rublev. Those are two of the better players this sport has to offer, which just goes to amplify Fritz's level at this moment. You have to assume that the 24-year-old’s confidence is through the roof, and that’s going to be extremely important as he heads into a match-up with the reigning US Open champion. Also, the fact that he’s been battle tested early in the tournament also helps, as Medvedev has earned straight-set wins over world No. 24 Botic Van De Zandschulp and world No. 21 Denis Shapovalov. Neither player really stood much of a chance against him.


The same can't be said for Fritz, who has a good chance to steal the first set. Even if this scenario doesn't pan out, we like the No. 11 seed's chances to win at least one in what should be an exciting heavyweight battle (well, height wise…). Both of these players have hold percentages of at least 85.0%, which means we could very well see a tiebreaker or two in this match. And if that’s the case, it’s just hard to see Fritz not coming away with at least one of them.

While Medvedev’s movement for a player his size is what makes him one of the game’s elite players, Fritz is also very mobile for a big server and has come a very long way as a baseline player over the years. The No. 1-ranked American is also fearless on the court, as he goes out there and isn’t afraid to hunt for winners. That attacking mentality from Fritz is going to stand out against Medvedev, and it’s just hard to see it not paying dividends in the end. Though Medvedev is the top-ranked player in the world coming into this match, he isn’t exactly untouchable.

Medvedev is almost a -200 favorite to come through with the win here. He has a great shot of not only doing that, but clinching his second event crown in three years. But we’re rolling with Fritz to at least force a deciding set, as it wouldn’t exactly shock us if he were to pull off the victory here.

The Pick: Fritz To Win A Set (-148)