All plays are in the parenthesis and I’m also sprinkling a little on those second tier guys to win it all. Similar to the CBB conference tournament bets, I’m scaling the size of each bet based on how long the odds are. I’d recommend doing the same.
What a treat this weekend is going to be.
Picks: Individual Finishes
Rory McIlroy (Top 5: +155 / Win: +800)
I don’t know if I’ve ever bet on the favorite of a golf tournament, but there’s too much going Rory’s way to deny here. He hasn’t finished outside the Top 6 in any stroke play event this year. He has five straight Top 10s here at Augusta.
If you look at Rory’s career, he tends to stack wins on top of each other. He won 2 of 3 back in Sept. ’16. He won 2 of 3 in May ’15. He won 3 straight tournaments in ’14. He won 3 of 4 back in the late summer of ’12. Essentially, 10 of his 15 PGA Tour wins have occurred within a couple weeks of another win.
The point, of course, is that he won his last stroke play event.
Justin Rose (Top 5: +250 / Win: +1300)
If I’m being transparent, I don’t really love the number here for Rose, but I bet on him every year at the Masters and I’m not about to stop now. He’s got five straight Top 15s at Augusta. He hasn’t missed the Top 25 in over a decade. He won the Farmers a couple months ago and outside of a rough showing at the Arnold Palmer, Rose has been rock steady all year.
Jon Rahm (Top 5: +350 / Win: +1800)
Rahm hasn’t been at his best the past few weeks, but it’s hard to ignore that 68-65-69 he closed with last year. He’s got enough talent to win the whole damn thing, but we’ll see if he can keep his emotions under wraps.
Paul Casey (Top 10: +270 / Top 5: +550)
Casey is an auto bet here. He’s had four straight Top 15s at Augusta, including three in the Top 6. It’s just an added bonus that he comes in with three Top 5s in the last couple of months, including a win at the Valspar.
Matt Kuchar (Top 10: +340 / Top 5: +750)
Despite the bad pub recently, Kuch has been playing some of his best golf this season, which is why he’s #1 in the FedEx Cup standings. It helps that he’s been playing about every event available, but he’s won a couple of tournaments and added a few other Top 10s this year. He hasn’t missed a cut at Augusta since he started coming here regularly back in 2010 and he’s had four Top 10s in that span.
Xander Schauffele (Top 10: +350 / Top 5: +750)
Xander seems to fly under the radar. He didn’t have the sharpest March, but the guy has won four tournaments in about 2.5 years on the tour. He’s finished in the Top 6 of three majors in just seven tries and only missed one cut. He’s only played the Masters one time and he finished 50th, but he fares well in all the key numbers you look for when it comes to this event.
Patrick Cantlay (Top 20: +175 / Top 10: +475)
Well, this isn’t a pick based on course performance. Cantlay was the low amateur back in 2012, but didn’t return until last year and he missed the cut. But outside of a couple missed cuts, Cantlay has seven Top 25 finishes with four of those coming in the Top 10. He’s a solid player overall, but a good putting week will be necessary if he’s gonna push for another Top 10 this week.
Si Woo Kim (Top 20: +250 / Top 10: +700)
Hard to pass a guy up at this number when he’s finished in the Top 5 in three of his last five stroke play events. He’s gone MC, T24 in his first two trips to the Masters. A 68-71 weekend last year has to make you feel like he’s starting to learn how to make it around the course.
Gary Woodland (Top 20: +250 / Top 10: +700)
I’m not gonna lie to you, Gary has a terrible track record in this event. But he has six Top 10s this year and he ranks highly in every key statistic for having success at Augusta. Maybe he puts some things together this year.
Corey Conners (Top 20: +450 / Top 10: +1300)
Gotta ride the hot hand. Conners just won the Texas Open by two strokes after missing cuts in five of his previous six events. Conners has only made 5 of 13 cuts this season, but of the five cuts he made, he finished in the Top 5 on three occasions. It’s pretty much all or nothing for Conners.
Hole in One in Round 4 – +1400
My goodness, what an embarrassing number here. Three straight years there’s been a hole in one on Sunday at 16 and it’s happened a total of five times in that span.
Top Australian – Marc Leishman +300
Jason Day and Adam Scott have lower odds, but I don’t think either of them come in playing any better than Leishman, who’s a pretty consistent guy. Scott’s a former winner, but it’s not like he contends every year. Day’s had a few Top 10s, but Leishman has been there as well. Cam Smith is the other Australian player. He’s a decent player, but hasn’t looked very good since February.