A tradition unlike any other—Jim Nantz
That’s right, folks, it’s Masters week! This is one of the few tournaments where course history plays a major role, especially on the fast bentgrass greens. Augusta National is a Par 72 course, measuring at 7.435 yards. Due to the length of the course, I’ll be focusing on guys who can drive the ball. I’m not too concerned with their accuracy since the fairways aren’t very narrow, and the rough is nonexistent. We want guys that are long off the tee, are solid ball strikers, and are familiar with the greens. And now that we know what to look for, let’s get to the picks.
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- SG: P – Strokes Gained: Putting
- Dr Dist – Driving Distance
- SG: P5 – Strokes Gained: Par 5
- SG: T2G – Strokes Gained: Tee 2 Green
- SG: APP – Strokes Gained: Approach
Dustin Johnson – $11,300: Not only does DJ have great history at Augusta (three straight top ten finishes), but his recent form has been excellent (T6 at the Valspar Championship, and T5 at The Players). He drives the ball just as far as anyone on tour, has a strong iron game, and doesn’t let his emotions get in the way of his play. Johnson is still searching for his first win at The Masters, and as long as his putter can get hot, he has as good a chance as anyone to take home the green jacket.
Justin Rose – $10,800: Rose isn’t what you would call a “bomber” off the tee, but the guy knows how to compete at Augusta National. Over the last five years, Rose hasn’t finished worse than T14 and that includes two second place finishes (2015, 2017). With a T8 finish a few weeks ago at The Players, Rose continues to show that he turns up in big moments. His strong approach game and phenomenal putting (11th in the field in SG: P) will help him into contention come the weekend.
Jason Day – $9,100: Now, assuming Day doesn’t come down with a cold, develop a hangnail, or get the sudden urge to go to Disney, I like him in this price range. He has finished in the top 22 over his last five appearances at the Masters and finished T28 in 2015. As much flack as Day gets about his health, he is one of the best putters on tour and ranks in the top 20 in Dr Dist and SG: P5.
Paul Casey – $9,000: Coming off a first-place finish at the Valspar Championship a couple of weeks ago, Casey is showing phenomenal form. Over his last 24 rounds, Casey ranks in the top 20 in both SG: T2G and SG: APP. He also ranks first in SG: P5. The one thing that has failed him recently is the putter. Casey’s last four Masters finishes are: T15, 6, T4, and 6. Augusta is an animal that Casey knows how to tame.
Bubba Watson – $8,800: I couldn’t tell you the last time I put Bubba in a DFS lineup, but here we are. Watson finished T5 here last year and won it all in 2014. Also, his recent form for this course is off the charts. Over his last 24 rounds, Watson ranks second in SG: T2G, first in Dr Dist, and sixth in SG: P5. There are certain courses where he excels, and Augusta National is one of them.
Hideki Matsuyama – $8,700: Hideki has been playing some great golf lately, finishing with a T8 at The Players. He’s also not too shabby when he plays in The Masters. In his last four appearances, Matsuyama has finished 19, T11, T7, and 5. He is fifteenth in SG: T2G, and first in SG: APP. As long as he can avoid the three-putts, I like his chances.
Matt Kuchar – $7,900: Kuchar isn’t known for his length off the tee, but that doesn’t bother him, as he has two top-5 finishes at The Masters (2014, 2017) over the last five years. He currently ranks third in SG: APP, along with ninth in SG: P5. While I don’t expect him to win, I do see a top-15 finish.
Patrick Cantlay – $7,700: Cantlay has terrific recent form, ranking in the top 25 in SG: T2G, SG: APP, and Dr Dist. He missed the cut at Augusta last year, but that isn’t deterring me from throwing him in my lineups. I also feel that a lot of people are going to go with more of the popular names in this price range, so I’m willing to take a chance and get a leg up on the field.
$6.9k and under
Charley Hoffman – $6,800: Here is the range where you can hopefully find some salary relief. Hoffman has been in the top 30 at The Masters in each of his last five appearances. He finished T18 at the Valspar Championship the other week as well. He has been a bit inconsistent early on this season, but at this price I’ll take another top-30 finish.
Martin Kaymer – $6,800: Kaymer’s best finish at The Masters came in 2017, finishing T16. Lately, his Dr Dist and SG: P5 both rank in the field’s top 20. Again, it’s the price that I like. If Kaymer can make the cut, that’ll be a win for me.
All statistics courtesy of Fantasy National Golf Club