The Masters Tournament: Odds and Projections

For golfers, the mere mention of the phrase “Green Jacket” immediately conjures images of the pristine greens and fairways at Augusta National Golf Club, home of the 87th Masters Tournament.  It’s the course where legends like Jack Nicklaus, Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods have created memorable stories and earned their places in history and our hearts.

Golf’s top players will be in Augusta this week for the 2023 Masters, all hoping to don the coveted green jacket Sunday night. The first group will tee of Thursday morning.  Weather will be a very pleasant 80 degrees with a light wind.  The weather changes quickly thereafter as cold air and rain move in Friday for the remainder of the weekend. This could possibly set the stage for a different kind of golfer to win the 2023 Masters, perhaps one with a tin cup.

The 2023 Masters Odds & Predictions

Jon Rahm enters as the No. 1 player in the field this week, according to the latest Golfweek rankings. Last year’s champion, Scottie Scheffler, is No. 2, followed by Xander Schauffele, Rory McIlroy and Tony Finau. Because this is a major, LIV Golf players are eligible to play, which means Cam Smith (45), Dustin Johnson (32) and Brooks Koepka (175) will also be in the field.

This will be the longest Augusta National has ever played after the par-5 13th hole was lengthened 35 yards by moving the tee box back. It’s still a par 72 but might give long hitters an advantage off the tee.  The greens remain treacherous and fast, accentuating the need for precision on approach shots.

Favorites to Win 2023 Masters – Odds To Win (Sportsbetting.ag)

Scottie Scheffler +775: The reigning 2022 Masters champion will be the odds on favorite to repeat in 2023, nearly edging ahead of Rahm and Rory with his consensus Masters odds. With two Designated event victories this year between the WM Phoenix Open and THE PLAYERS Championship, Scheffler has managed to improve his level of play since last year. He’s finished no worse than T19 in three prior trips to Augusta and seems poised to contend yet again.

Rory McIlroy +775: Rory will once again head to Augusta looking for a Green Jacket and the career Grand Slam. He has done everything except win at The Masters, with 7 Top 10s here, including a runner-up last year when he holed out from the bunker on the 72nd hole to give himself a small chance. With three international wins over his last 12 starts and a strong 3rd place finish in his last start at the WGC Dell Match Play, Rory’s game is in top form heading into Masters week.

Jon Rahm +1000: Through the first round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational, Rahm had begun to create separation as the clear favorite at The Masters, with consensus futures odds around 6-1. He’s sputtered a bit since then, but with five international wins over his last 12 starts, and five career top-10 finishes at The Masters, he’ll be a worthy co-favorite at Augusta.

Jordan Spieth +1800: The 2015 Masters champion and five-time top-3 finisher at this event will always have a premium on his odds at this event, especially with course history proving so repeatable here. I’m not convinced it’s Spieth who has the best chance after the three co-favorites to don the green jacket, but the hype is certainly growing with three top-6 finishes over his last six starts.

Justin Thomas +2200: Thomas lifted his 2nd PGA Championship trophy at Southern Hills last year before going through quite a slump to end the year. That slump has continued on in 2023, as Thomas has finished better than T20 just twice over eight starts. His tee-to-green stats have remained top-tier, but the putting inconsistency brings many questions into Masters week for the short odds.

Cameron Smith +2700: Smith’s appearance in Augusta will be talked about endlessly, as the world’s best player to join LIV Golf will make his first start in a major since winning The Open Championship. It’s no question Smith is LIV’s best chance to shake the golf world with a major championship trophy on the roster. He’s been slow out the gates in the new LIV season with finishes of 6th and 26th over the first two events. His performance at LIV Orlando in the week prior to the Masters, as another poor showing may present some buy low value on the three-time top-5 finisher at The Masters.

Patrick Cantlay  +2000: Cantlay’s current consensus odds behind Cam Smith, Jordan Spieth, and Justin Thomas portray a clear picture of the significant premium placed on Course History at this event. With finishes of T3, T4, and T19 in his last three starts (all in Designated events), Cantlay’s current form is on par with that of the three co-favorites. His Masters resume is mediocre, but he flashed upside in 2019 with a T9 finish, and seems inevitable that the results in Majors will materialize soon.

Xander Schauffele +2500: He hasn’t won one yet, but Schauffele has established himself as a mainstay in contention at the biggest tournaments in the world. After a long winless streak, Schauffele went back-to-back late in 2022 and seems to be in a great spot. He had a 2nd and 3rd at Augusta before a surprising missed cut last year as one of the favorites, but looks to be in solid form with a pair of top-10 finishes in 2023 already.

Collin Morikawa +3000: Morikawa’s 5th at Augusta last year was arguably the high point of a very disappointing season for the two-time major champion. He struggled with his swing and ball flight, but it was truly the putter that was even worse than we could have imagined from him. In classic Morikawa fashion, his irons have remained elite in 2023, so his ability to contend at the Masters will depend on the state of his shaky putter.

Jason Day +2800: Nobody’s stock is climbing faster in the game of golf right now than Jason Day. He’s finished top-20 in each of his last six stroke play events and impressed at the WGC Dell Match Play in his latest start, advancing to the quarter finals. Day has a perfect game for Augusta with three career top-5 finishes, and has been a popular future bet up to this point.

Tony Finau +2500: There is new reason to be optimistic about Finau’s chances at The Masters, as he has now won 3 times since the 2022 Masters tournament. Finau combines that newfound win equity with a decorated Major resume, which includes 10 career top-10 finishes. The Masters is perhaps the Major he’s found the most consistency in, as he has 3 Top 10s at Augusta in 5 starts.

Max Homa +3300: You can make the argument that Max Homa has played like a top-3 or top-4 caliber player on the PGA TOUR this 2023 season with wins at the Fortinet Championship and Farmers Insurance Open to go along with five top-6 finishes. The comeuppance might feel a bit abrupt, but Homa has has now piled up sic PGA TOUR wins since 2019, four coming at Major-like venues. The results in Majors haven’t materialized yet for Homa, but it’s clear he’s destined for better results ahead at The Masters.

2023 Masters picks – Long Shot Contenders

Tiger Woods (+7500)

Tiger Woods won The Masters not long ago,  in 2019 after going through four surgeries on his back.  Woods has played four times since badly injuring his right leg in a February 2021 car crash. He has missed the cut only once (British Open), which is remarkable. This will be only his third elite competition since July. He has never missed the cut as a pro at the Masters.

Tom Kim (+8000)
Kim is making his Masters debut, which already puts him at a disadvantage because no debutant has won here since 1979. It just doesn’t happen. But Kim isn’t like most debutants. He’s already a 2-time champion on the PGA Tour and has 3 top-10s in 11 events played this season.

Russell Henley (+12500)
Henley has made the cut in 5 of his 6 starts at the Masters and although he doesn’t have a top-10 yet, he’s finished T-11 and T-15 in the past. He played well on a big stage at the Players Championship this year when he tied for 19th.