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Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Twofer Tuesday: The Masters

A confused Twofer Tuesday searches hopelessly for azaleas at Augusta National as we prepare for the Masters.

Tiger in the Green Jacket

I don't really need to give you any basics about this tournament, do I? Of course not. All you really need to know is that Tiger will be defending in November rather than April, which means slightly more Bermuda on the course with a surprisingly warm (80°s F) and probably wet week.

The general thinking is that the wet weather may open up the possibilities for the shorter players, as Zach Johnson and Mike Weir (among others) have demonstrated in past rain-plagued Masters. I think that could bode well for Collin Morikawa.

I'm sure the big money will be on Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau, who should probably be my picks this week. I also doubt that you would go wrong if you picked Tyrrell Hatton, Jon Rahm or Patrick Cantlay, who have all been playing well leading into this major.

And I don't think anybody will ever rule Tiger Woods out again.

But I'm a contrarian after all and have decided to pick a couple of players who, you could argue, have been snakebitten by Augusta in the past. I happen to think they may be in their best form to win the Masters that they've ever been in.

  • My first pick is Jason Day. Jason has four Top10s at Augusta -- T2 in 2011, 3 in 2013, T10 in 2016 and T5 last year in 2019. The back is always a question when Jason tees it up, but he's been playing well with four Top7s during the summer and, after a few weeks of struggle, another T7 at Houston. Players like Jason 'get up' for the Masters and I think he just needs one healthy week to make yet another run at the Green Jacket.
  • My other pick is Dustin Johnson. He too has four Top10s at Augusta -- T6 in 2015, T4 in 2016, T10 in 2018 and T2 just last year. And I don't need to tell you how well he played during the summer, or that he came back from his COVID break with a T2 last week. This could be the year he shows us what he might have done in 2017 if he hadn't fallen down steps at the start of Masters Week and had to withdraw.

The Masters (as usual) divides its coverage between ESPN and CBS. Don't forget, the hours look a bit weird this year because the days are much shorter in November.

  • Thursday: 1pm-5:30pm ET on ESPN
  • Friday: 1pm-5:30pm ET on ESPN
  • Saturday: 1pm-5pm ET on CBS
  • Sunday: 10am-3pm ET on CBS

We'll see fall foliage rather than azaleas this year, and small groups of 'significant others' rather than patrons lining the fairways. But the Masters is the Masters, so how can it possibly disappoint us?

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