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The Masters: Expert Picks

I'm passing Dustin and Rory and going with Rickie Fowler as my star player

Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports

What: The Masters
When: April 6th -€” 9th
Where: Augusta National Golf
2016 Winner: Danny Willet (-5)
Purse: $10MM total (Winner -€” $1.8MM)

Course: Augusta National Golf Club. Amen Corner (11th , 12th and 13th holes), Rae's Creek, Ike's Pond, so many fun features to a bucolic and scenic course. As most of you know -€” the greens are lightning quick and yet the rough is not so rough but instead a slightly longer growing fairway. Potentially the most famous American course, it always leads to a wonderful week of golf.

Rickie Fowler. The obvious picks here are Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy but I could argue that Rickie has been just as good over the last 4 tournaments. Since he missed the cut at the Farmers Insurance Open, he doesn't have a finish worse than 16th (5 tournaments). He looked electric at the Shell Houston Open last week and is playing with a ton of confidence. I actually think that he will finish better than Dustin at the Masters this year.  He missed the cut last year but finished 12th in 2015 and 5th in 2014.

Jordan Spieth. Does the missed cut at Shell Houston Open have me concerned? Honestly -€” a little bit. But You can't deny his pedigree at the Masters, 2nd, 1st, 2nd over the last 3 years. He DID miss the cut at the Shell Houston Open in 2014 and finish 2nd at the Masters that year so a precedent has been set that he can bounce back strong. 

Brandt Snedeker. He is quietly putting together a very respectable season.  Top 30 finishes in 5 of his last 6 tournaments (3 top ten finishes amongst that). He finished 10th at the Masters last year and he's 37th on the tour in Strokes Gained Putting.

Jon Rahm. I assume by now after picking him 4 times in the first 13 tournaments of the year and singing his praises each week that this selection should come as no surprise. Behind Dustin, he is the best player on tour right now. What remains to be seen is how he fares on the quick greens at Augusta. 

Dark Horse:
Tyrell Hatton. He appears to only play in PGA Tours when he knows he will do well. In the four tournaments he's played at this year, two netted top 5 finishes and the other 2 were top 20 finishes (these two being World Golf Champions which is hardly an easy set of competition to go up against). Currently ranked #15 in the Official World Golf Ranking