Tuesday, May 11, 2021

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Sleeper Picks: Masters Tournament

Ian Poulter (+15000) … The 45-year-old from England just beat up on Rory McIlroy, Cameron Smith and fellow Masters Sleeper, Lanto Griffin, in the Group Stage of the Match Play. It’s the nearest object in his rearview mirror, so there’s enough positive reinforcement of his form upon arrival. His accuracy off the tee never hurts, but his experience in knowing where to place the ball in the fairways at Augusta National generates a higher expectation. He’s also cashed in all but one of 15 appearances and recorded top 25s in the last two.

Lanto Griffin (+20000) … When the last Masters was contested in April in 2019, he was 521st in the Official World Golf Ranking. Yes, the likes of Collin Morikawa, Viktor Hovland and Matthew Wolff still were in college, and Will Zalatoris was outside the top 1,500 in the OWGR, but Griffin’s trajectory never has resembled that of a wunderkind. Now 32 years of age and in just his third season with a PGA TOUR card, he’s put the boom in late bloomer. This is his second appearance after predictably missing the cut in his debut in November. His steady game improves nearer the hole and his consistency week after week remains one of the most underrated narratives going.

Dylan Frittelli (+15000) … For a guy who misses a fair share of cuts, he capitalizes on the ones he makes. Since play resumed last summer, the 30-year-old South African has recorded four top 10s and another five top 25s worldwide. His most recent showcase was an escape from the Group Stage in a pod with Tony Finau, Jason Kokrak and Will Zalatoris. Frittelli also finished T5 in his second appearance at Augusta National in November. He co-led with an opening 65 and ranked second in par-4 scoring for the week.

Mackenzie Hughes (+25000) … It’s been four years since his first and, until now, his only experience of competing at Augusta National. The 30-year-old is much-better equipped to handle the rigors of the course and attempt to become the second Canadian ever to win a major. Of course, it was Mike Weir at the 2003 Masters who broke the seal for their homeland. Hughes is rested since surviving Group Stage of the Match Play. His pod included Webb Simpson and Paul Casey, a pair with positions in my Power Rankings. Hughes is 12th on TOUR in Strokes Gained: Putting and T23 in par-5 scoring.

Sebastián Muñoz (+15000) … One of the darlings of the 2019-20 season never fell lower than 16th in the FedExCup once he started his campaign, but he’s yet to crack the top 50 of the Official World Golf Ranking. Positioned 63rd upon arrival of this second appearance, he can’t complain about his first in November. En route to a T19, he ranked T11 in greens in regulation and seventh in converting those chances into par breakers. Since turning 28 early in 2021, the Colombian is 7-for-9 with a sample size-best T9 last week in San Antonio. For the week, he slotted T20 in GIR, second in proximity and third in converting his GIR into birdies or better.

NOTE: Sleeper is a relative term, so Rob uses unofficial criteria to determine who qualifies. Each of the following usually is determined to be ineligible for this weekly staple: Winners of the tournament on the current host course; winners in the same season; recent major champions; top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking; recent participants of team competitions.


Odds were sourced on Tuesday, April 6 at 5 a.m. ET. For live odds visit betmgm.


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Latest Posts

Champions League Final Weighs Move to London or Portugal

Officials from UEFA and Britain met Monday to discuss shifting the Manchester City-Chelsea game from Istanbul to Wembley. Porto, Portugal, is another option.European soccer’s...

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