2024 Masters Picks: Expert Outright, Placement Bets

2024 Masters Picks: Expert Outright, Placement Bets article feature image

Via Getty Images/Action Network Design. Pictured (left to right): Tiger Woods, Scottie Scheffler & Sahith Theegala.

2024 Masters Picks & Expert Bets

The Masters is a tradition unlike any other, and it's not hyperbole to say this is the best golf tournament on the planet. This is a special week and one that I don't take for granted every April.

Golf fans are familiar with Augusta National Golf Club, but we will cover the specifics anyway. This perfectly manicured course is a par-72 measuring 7,555 yards. It has been lengthened in recent years, which only makes the course tougher. It plays even longer than the scorecard indicates, as the grounds crew purposely mows the grass so it grows toward the tee boxes, which minimizes rollout on drives. Some estimates suggest the course plays closer to 7,800 yards.

It's easy to see why distance off the tee is a major advantage at the year's first major.

In addition to the raw length of the course, the fairways here are more than 50 yards wide on average. There is no rough at Augusta National as there is a first cut (which is shorter than the fairway at my favorite municipal course) and then pine straw. Despite this being a driver-heavy golf course, the field hit 74% of fairways last year. This is one of the few courses where pure power off the tee has a direct correlation to success.

The greens at Augusta National are average in size (6,400 square feet) and feature lightning-quick Bentgrass. These typically play around 14 on the stimpmeter and are the fastest greens on the PGA Tour. The greens feature undulations and runoff areas, which place an emphasis on both approach shots and around the green play.

While distance off the tee is an advantage, golfers will only be able to score if they are precise with their iron play.

Course history has been extremely predictive here over the years. In fact, course history is more predictive here than any other course on the PGA Tour (and it's not particularly close). This is likely due to a few factors because course knowledge is needed (especially on the greens), patience is needed (you can't be too aggressive on many of the holes), and then there's the added pressure of this being a major championship.

Essentially, we are looking for golfers who are long off the tee, elite on approach, creative and excellent scramblers, and excel on lightning fast greens. In order to win this week, golfers also need to have a strong track record at Augusta National and be comfortable playing in majors. Sounds easy enough, right?

We went with an aggressive approach last week, but I'm taking the safer route at the Masters.

Find my 2024 Masters Picks & Expert Bets below.

  • Starting bankroll: $1,000
  • Last week: -$100
  • Current bankroll: $476

2024 Masters Picks: Outright Bets

Scottie Scheffler to Win +450 (FanDuel)

Bet $20 to Pay $110

As it stands right now, I only have one outright on my betting card. While +450 doesn't seem great in the context of a golf bet, we would chomp at the bit to get those odds on a baseball, basketball or football game. Scheffler has had tee-to-green numbers similar to prime Tiger Woods over the last two years.

All of a sudden, he has unlocked something with his putter as well. In three starts since switching to a mallet putter, he won the Arnold Palmer Invitational, he won THE PLAYERS Championship and tied for second at the Houston Open (he had a five-foot putt that he missed to force a playoff).

He's played the Masters four times and has yet to finish worse than a tie for 19th. He won here in 2022 and finished T10 here last year despite some uncharacteristic blowups.

If you are hoping to have a sweat on Sunday afternoon, Scheffler is by far the safest bet on the board.

2024 Masters Picks: Placement Bets

Xander Schauffele Top 10 +160 (DraftKings)

Bet $20 to Pay $52

I almost bet on Schauffele to win this week, but I've been hurt too many times by a poor Sunday performance from him in contention.

Most recently this happened at THE PLAYERS Championship when he had the lead on the back nine and proceeded to bogey holes 14 and 15. He gave himself a chance with a good shot on the island-green 17th hole but missed a six-footer to pull even with Scheffler.

My heart can't take any more pain from Schauffele so instead, I am betting on him to finish in the top 10. He's already accomplished that feat in six of his eight starts this season, which is the second-most top 10s on Tour behind only Scheffler.

Schauffele doesn't have a weakness in his game, as he's capable of gaining in every Strokes Gained category. He has an excellent track record in majors and has three top 10s in his last five appearances at Augusta National.

Sahith Theegala Top 20 +145 (DraftKings | Ties Paid in Full)

Bet $20 to Pay $49

This might be my favorite bet of the week. I build a model each week, and without making any manual adjustments to it, Theegala rates as the eighth-best play in the entire field.

He's historically been a tough player to predict because he has relied to much on his short game. A strong ball-striker is typically more consistent because that skillset is more repeatable each and every week. I love his major improvements in ball-striking as has gained at least 5.2 strokes ball-striking in three of his last five starts.

The wide fairways should help his inclination to spray the ball off the tee. He put on a show in his Masters debut last season, firing a low round on Sunday to finish in the top 10.

Byeong Hun An Top 20 +350 (BetMGM | Ties Paid in Full)

Bet $20 to Pay $90

Ben An is coming off back-to-back missed cuts and will be an afterthought in betting markets and in DFS this week. Ideally he'd be in better form, but the recent missed cuts have led to much better prices in the placement market.

He's an excellent fit for Augusta National as he trails only Bryson DeChambeau in Driving Distance in this field. He's excellent around the green and has the ability to get hot with his irons. He's only made one cut at the Masters in his career, but he's arguably a better golfer now than he has been at any point in his career.

2024 Masters Picks: Tiger Woods Bets

Tiger Woods to Make the Cut +120 (DraftKings)

Bet $20 to Pay $44

We don't have many more opportunities to bet on Tiger in his career. More importantly, Tiger doesn't have many more opportunities to break records. If he makes the cut this week, he will break the all-time consecutive cuts made streak at the Masters.

While he's been forced to withdraw far too often recently, he's been gearing up for this start since last April. He knows the importance of making the cut this week. Early week reports suggest he has plenty of speed with the driver, and we know he can get around Augusta National with a blindfold over his eyes. We all want to cheer for Tiger, and this is an easy way to do it. It also only requires two decent rounds from him to cash the bet.

We only get this treat once a year, so enjoy the week, and good luck with your bets!

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