Without Woods in field, McIlroy, Mickelson co-favorites at Augusta


LVH golf oddsmaker Jeff Sherman analyzes several key players in the Masters field. Follow him on Twitter @golfodds and at golfodds.com.

TIGER WOODS (Withdrawn)

Tiger was in the midst of a rough start to his season at the time of his withdrawal, having not finished better than a tie for 25th at Doral, a place he had won numerous times. His season also included a tie for 80th at Torrey Pines, a withdrawal at the Honda Classic, and withdrawing prior to the start of the Arnold Palmer Invitational. His odds drifted from an opening 5-1 to a high of 10-1 prior to withdrawing from the Masters on April 1. At the LVH, those holding Masters tickets on Tiger will receive a refund once the tournament concludes. His exact number of major wins prop also will be refunded since he had to start the Masters for action on that prop. Please check the sports book’s house rules (or rules on sheets) as they vary from shop to shop.

RORY McILROY (10-1)

After a subpar 2013 season, McIlroy has regained his form and is again a favorite to land a major championship. … Failed to close when in position on Sunday at the Honda Classic, though, and his best Masters finish is a tie for 15th in 2011. … Did have a momentum-building 65 in the final round of the Houston Open.

ADAM SCOTT (10-1)

With much success over the past two years, Scott has played a limited 2014 schedule. … The defending Masters champion also finished third at the 2013 British Open and fifth at the 2013 PGA Championship. … Like McIlroy, Scott failed to garner a win when in position on Sunday at this year’s Arnold Palmer Invitational.

PHIL MICKELSON (12-1)

Struggling at the start of 2014, although coming off his season-best tie for 12th at last week’s Houston Open. … Suffered an oblique injury at the Texas Open, but his Houston finish suggests it is no longer an issue. … Regardless of current form, always shows up at Augusta with three wins and numerous top-10 finishes.

JASON DAY (12-1)

Day finished third at the Masters in 2013 and tied for second in 2011. He withdrew from the WGC-Cadillac Championship and Arnold Palmer Invitational due to a thumb injury, and will go into the Masters without having played a stroke-play event in two months. … Day’s odds opened at 25-1 in August, and he is the current leader in ticket count.

MATT KUCHAR (12-1)

Currently second in ticket count behind Day, Kuchar has had a successful start to the season with consistent top form. … Off two straight top-fives in Texas, and finished tied for eighth at Augusta last year and tied for third in 2012. … Momentum is clearly on his side, and the public is supporting him such that he will be one of the larger liabilities for the books.

DUSTIN JOHNSON (20-1)

One of the longer hitters on tour, Johnson has enjoyed a great start to the season with four top-10s in five events (the other being a tie for 33rd at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship). … A definite threat this week, and has been one of the more supported golfers in recent majors. … Did withdraw at last week’s Houston Open after an opening round of 80, claiming stiffness in his back, although it seems more likely due to his position in the tournament.

BUBBA WATSON (20-1)

Like Johnson, one of the longer hitters on tour. Also like Johnson, he has had a stellar start to the season with a win at the Northern Trust Open to go with two second-place finishes. … Won the Masters in 2012, and definitely one to take a serious look at for a second green jacket.

HENRIK STENSON (25-1)

Last season’s FedEx Cup champion, his 2014 form hasn’t lived up to his 2013 finish. … Opened at 30-1 in August, and has drifted between 20-1 and 25-1 since. His run through the FedEx Cup playoffs caused his dip in odds. … In recent years, his best finish at Augusta is a tie for 17th in both 2007 and 2008.

JUSTIN ROSE (25-1)

Broke through with a major championship victory at the 2013 U.S. Open. … Has a good Augusta record, including fifth- and eighth-place finishes. … His odds opened at 20-1 and have drifted out slightly due to a shoulder injury at the start of the season that contributed to minimal support.

SERGIO GARCIA (25-1)

On a nice run of top-20 finishes, and his past two years at Augusta National resulted in a tie for eighth in 2013 and a tie for 12th in 2012. … Seems better to support in matchups than the outright market as Garcia has stated that he doubts his chances of winning majors. With Tiger not playing, this might be Garcia’s best opportunity to break through.

ZACH JOHNSON (25-1)

Enjoying a good start to the season, as he has yet to miss a cut. He has attracted early support, which drove his odds down from an opening 80-1. … Won the Masters in 2007, although his next-best finish is a tie for 20th the following year.

BRANDT SNEDEKER (25-1)

One of last year’s most heavily supported golfers at Augusta, Snedeker has had a quiet start to his season. … Did finish tied for eighth at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. … Odds opened at 25-1 and recently reached a high of 40-1.

JORDAN SPIETH (30-1)

One of the hottest commodities in golf betting each week, Spieth has been one of the larger moves in the odds market since opening at 80-1 in August. … Meteoric rise saw him win Rookie of the Year in 2013 and make the President’s Cup team. … Although a first-timer at Augusta, Spieth has shown consistent top form and has the confidence and aggressiveness to be a contender.

KEEGAN BRADLEY (30-1)

Has played Augusta National twice, tying for 54th in 2012 and tying for 27th in 2011. … Displaying top form, coming off his third top-10 of the season last week at the Houston Open. … A prior major winner at the 2011 PGA Championship, Bradley is going into the tournament with momentum on his side, although he can be erratic.

JASON DUFNER (30-1)

The 2013 PGA Championship winner is coming to Augusta off three straight top 20s. … His best finish in the Masters is a tie for 20th last year. One of the more heavily supported golfers in recent majors.

CHARL SCHWARTZEL (40-1)

Leading the South African contingent is the 2011 Masters winner. His recent form has been better than average, but not really contending for titles at the moment. … Like Garcia, might make a better matchup play than outright play.

HARRIS ENGLISH (40-1)

One of the up-and-comers on the PGA Tour, English has secured two victories in the past year. … First visit to the Masters, although his current form is stellar with five top-20s in his past six events. … An outsider who could be in contention come Sunday.

ANGEL CABRERA (40-1)

Has not had much success this season, although showed some improvement last week in Houston with a tie for 43rd as he faded after an opening-round 68. … What makes him attractive to bettors here is his record at Augusta. With five top-10s, including a win in 2009 and a playoff loss to Adam Scott last year, Cabrera has been seeing consistent support since opening at 60-1 odds.

HUNTER MAHAN (40-1)

Has had an erratic start to the season, and displays an inconsistent record at the Masters. In his past six starts at Augusta, has recorded three top-12 finishes to go along with three missed cuts. … Finished tied for 31st at Houston last week after coming off a withdrawal at the Arnold Palmer Invitational due to soreness in his lower back.

LEE WESTWOOD (40-1)

Even though his record at Augusta is impressive, including four straight top-11 finishes, his current form is less than desirable. Cracked only his second top-20 finish this season last week in Houston with a tie for 17th, and his odds have drifted from an opening 30-1.

RICKIE FOWLER (50-1)

A fan favorite because of his aggressive demeanor, Fowler had not been in top form until his sixth-place finish last week in Houston. … No finish better than a tie for 27th in his three Masters starts.

JIMMY WALKER (50-1)

Walker has burst onto the scene this season with three victories and the lead in the FedEx Cup race. … Off two straight top-25s in Texas. … First trip to the Masters.

RYAN MOORE (60-1)

Former UNLV standout who has seen decent support, driving his odds down from an opening 100-1. … His current form and course form are both about average right now, not giving any indication he is ready to break through and join former Rebel Adam Scott as a major winner.

PATRICK REED (Field 18-1)

Reed has won twice during the 2014 season, including the WGC-Cadillac Championship. … Went to Augusta State, so local knowledge should help this first-timer. … Since he was not qualified when the original Masters list was released in August, he is part of the Field option. If individually listed, his odds would be 50-1.

 

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