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Best Props - The Masters
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2019 Masters Prop Betting Preview

The first Major of the year always brings with it plenty of prop betting opportunities, and while massive “to make cut” parlays tend to be an industry favorite since such a big percentage of the small Masters Field is likely to see weekend play, but that's definitely not the only (or best) way to attack this tournament.

Last year, my Masters prop bets produced positive results to the tune of 3+ units thanks to Francesco Molinari sneaking into a Top 20 finish at the +400 price tag. That was definitely a nice result considering I ended up spitting into the wind with my “miss cut” selections, and that's one prop category I'll put on the shelf for this Major given the makeup of the field and event structure.

So while there will be some similarities between this year's Masters picks, and which names show up here, hopefully the end result is another profitable Masters tournament.

Odds per -

Prop Bet #1
Highest 18 hole score: Over 84.5 strokes (+115)

With Masters winners earning a lifetime exemption to the event, this is a tournament where you get a handful of seniors out there playing a few rounds at one of the game's great venues for nostalgia's sake. Combine those guys – who have little chance of competing – with the multitude of amateur invites the Masters gives out to reward golfers for their success at that level, and you get an instance where big scores are readily available from some either overwhelmed amateurs, or unable to keep up seniors. I'm not going to be out here naming names, but I do think we see someone from that group shoot 85 or worse on one of the first two days.

That's because that scoreline has been hit in five of the last seven playings of this event, and at plus-money odds that's hard to ignore. On the human side of things, you never want to see anyone young or old completely struggle at an event like this, but the reality is that Augusta National is hard for even the best players in today's game, and kick up some rough conditions and a few water balls, and ugly numbers happen.

Odds per -

Prop Bet(s) #2:
Top 20 Finish: Yes

JB Holmes (+600)
Keegan Bradley (+500)
Patrick Cantlay (+275)
Henrik Stenson (+200)

Holmes and Cantlay are two guys I've backed outright from this piece, but at +600 and +275 respectively to finish in the Top 20, that's a nice payout with plenty of wiggle room should they falter down the stretch or just not have it against the elite talent that may be in the mix with them on Sunday.

In terms of adding Bradley and Stenson to this list, both are elite ball strikers themselves when on, and while both of them still battle their putter more often than not, continuing to give themselves chances with their approach shots should have them in a great position on the weekend.

Bradley's results at Augusta have not been stellar as he's never had a better finish than T22 here, and having not played here since 2016, you can understand why his odds are as high as they are. But with two Top 20's in his last four stroke play events, current form is something to hang your hat on with him this week, and thanks to the new putting rules that allow players to keep the pin in, former long putters like Keegan (and Adam Scott) have found that to be highly beneficial to them already this year as they can just think about aiming for the stick. Keegan's still likely to miss a 4-footer or two, but should he avoid mistakes like that, than a +500 payout is easily a nice and feasible reward.

Stenson's ball striking is highly regarded as some of the best in the world, and with his recent form on an upward trajectory as well of late, he's a guy that's hard to ignore at this price for a T20. In the last six Masters, Stenson has finishes of 5th (last year), MC, 24, 19, 14, and 18th, meaning that this bet has cashed at a 67% clip in the past, and with that success rate and a 2-1 price tag, we should not be surprised if Stenson works his way into the Top 20 by tournament's end.

Odds per -

Top 10 Finish: Yes
Hideki Matsuyama (+300)

Matsuyama is another guy I've got win futures on, and while a Top 20 wager may be considered the 'safer' way to go given that he's cashed that bet each of the past four years at Augusta, bumping him up to a Top 10 finish at +300 adds just that bit more value – he's +120 to Top 20 – that makes this play much more attractive.

Like others listed in this piece, Matsuyama's play on the greens has held him back at times this year, and you'd better be able to knock in some putts at Augusta if you are going to compete. But poor putting is a tag you can put on a large majority of this field as a whole, and with course history being a much bigger part of things this week than it is other week's on Tour, backing Matsuyama being on the first page of the leaderboard when all is said and done is not that hard to take at this price.

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