Masters Preview / Best Bets and Plays
Queue Ray Charles singing “Georgia on my Mind” because we have Masters week!
Feels strange this year having the Masters in November but nevertheless it’s still the best tournament in golf and excitement is in the air! Last year was one of the most memorable tournament victories ever as Tiger Woods claimed an iconic major victory in his Sunday red. The defending champion will look to add a sixth green jacket to his collection this year.
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This Masters will definitely be different from previous years. There will be inclement weather over the course of the week which will mess up tee-times and result in more difficult course conditions. Additionally, there will be no fans which is no different from previous tournaments this year but it definitely feels more prevalent at Augusta who are known for their tremendous galleries. With Augusta getting darker earlier in the day in November and the scattered tee times due to weather I believe there will be live betting opportunities. The back 9 starts much more difficult than the front 9 due to Amen Corner. Therefore, there may be live betting opportunities for players that start their rounds on the Back 9.
- Field of 93 with a smaller cut line of Top 50 + ties after 36 holes.
- Par 72, 7,475 yards, and Bentgrass greens
- The ability to have success putting will be a big factor in who wins the event. These greens have hills, bumps, and are one of the fastest greens players will see all year. This is where course history and familiarity with the greens become crucial. Guys like Bubba Watson who succeed in lag putting have an edge this week.
Stats to look for:
- Strokes Gained: Off the Tee
- Driving Distance Gained
- Strokes Gained: Approach
- Par 5 Success
- Course History
Unfortunately, the Masters has been taking bets for months so a lot of these numbers do not have much value. So if you have no previous bets, there’s a select few with value. That being said here’s a few plays we still recommend:
Dustin Johnson (8.5-1): We were on him for the US Open and he had an incredibly disappointing performance with a sixth place finish (sarcasm). The man is on fire right now with finishes of 2nd, 6th, 1st, 2nd, 1st, 2nd. He is superb all around and has no weakness. He has solid course history at Augusta as he’s finished 2nd, 10th, 4th, and 6th the last four years. This feels all set up for him to finally win another major and his first green jacket. Don’t love the value of his number but he’s the top player in the world and deserves this kind of credit.
Patrick Cantlay (25-1): Think this is a valuable number considering his great recent performances. Strength is bentgrass greens and he finished 9th here last year.
Scottie Scheffler (66-1): Ranks 8th in my model, I think he is prime for a big tournament breakthrough, and at this number, he is too good to pass up. Love his recent form this year.
Head to Head:
Si Woo Kim over Erik Van Rooyen (-110): Si Woo pops in my model due to his solid off the tee and driving distance. He is best on bentgrass greens and he’s finished 21st and 24th the last two years at the Masters. Van Rooyen’s weakness is bentgrass greens and he struggles the most when they’re rolling quick. He has also never competed in a Masters before so he will be in for a surprise.
Dylan Fritelli over Victor Perez – 1 ½ (-105): This is mainly a fade against Victor Perez. Ignoring a ridiculous 7.3 strokes putting that he gained at the PGA Championship he has been horrible missing 4 of the last 6 cuts and one 65th finish. Fritteli’s off the tee game should keep him in contention for this matchup as long as his putting doesn’t fall apart as he struggles on bentgrass greens.
Abraham Ancer over Phil Mickelson – 1 ½ (-110): Ancer has missed one cut in his 23 starts, I love his floor in H2H’s. His off the tee and approach game will carry him and give him a solid score. I’m fading Phil due to poor off the tee game and prior form in PGA Tour events. I think Ancer has a much higher floor and my only fear with this bet is his lack of exposure at the Masters.
Bubba Watson over Tyrell Haton (-105): Bubba is coming in off very strong recent form. Finishes at 4th and 7th in his last two events. He lives for the Masters as he’s won two green jackets and has finished 12th and 5th in the last two years. Hatton is also coming in off good recent form but has really struggled at Augusta with his best performance being 44th in 2018. This is mainly a bet on Bubba as I expect him to play very well this weekend.
Placement and Props
Tony Finau (+250) Top 10: Number 1 in my model. Tremendous all around game. He’s finished 5th and 10th at Augusta and consistently competes in majors. Finau has the monkey on his back with his inability to win a major but I think there is a lot of value here at a Top 10.
Gary Woodland to Miss the Cut (+150): Gary Woodland is playing hurt and it shows. He has shown very poor form the past three months, with only two tournaments of overall positive strokes gained (.7 at the PGA Championship and .3 at the BMW Championship). Compounded with the poor recent play, he has not performed well at Augusta National. His best finish is T24, his first start, and he has missed the cut in 3 of his last 4 Masters. At plus money, I like the bet.
Jason Kokrak Top Debutant (+900): Coming in off phenomenal form as he won the CJ Cup and finished 17th at the ZoZo Championship. He has tremendous off the tee game and approach. Think we’re getting a lot of value here as he really only has to beat Morikawa and Wolff. Ranked 10th in my model.
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