Phil Mickelson is gunning for a fourth Green Jacket this week. (Redington/Getty Images)
By Rob Bolton, PGATOUR.COM Fantasy Insider
In terms of options, the Masters is as simple as it gets for one-and-doners. Who ya got? Tiger Woods or Phil Mickelson?
Really, there is no alternative strategy unless you have no choice. If you've burned both and remain undecided this week, email your short list to me at FantasyInsider@charter.net. As for why my list stops at two, behold these staggering numbers:
- Woods is the all-time earnings leaders at the Masters with $6,853,473. That's just $55,631 (or 0.81 percent) more than Mickelson in second place.
- With $6,797,842, Mickelson has earned 2.8 times that of Angel Cabrera in third ($2,427,524).
- On its own, Mickelson's $4,370,318 margin over Cabrera would rank highest all-time in 27 of the 40 tournaments on the PGA TOUR schedule. Of the other 13 (including the Masters), Woods sits atop 11. Ernie Els is No. 1 at The Open Championship, but Woods' haul in that major also exceeds Mickelson's margin over Cabrera. The only event in which Woods doesn't figure in this comparison is the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am led by Mickelson.
- As a professional at the Masters, Woods is 16-for-16 with an average paycheck of $428,342.06. In his 18 cuts made in 19 starts as a pro, Mickelson has averaged $377,658.11 per bank deposit.
I exhausted Woods (and my lone self-imposed mulligan for a defending champion) at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. He won by two strokes. So, despite Mickelson's acknowledgement that he's nervous and his never-dull approach at equipment this week, I'm plugging in the three-time Masters champ as my one-and-done selection this week.
Loyal readers will be quick to question my usual strategy to save the left-hander for the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola, but I'm off to a great start and that tournament guarantees a six-figure payday. Incidentally, my goal is to hit $10 million in earnings.
For those following my lead and yet to burn Jim Furyk, it's worth noting that Furyk's career earnings at the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola also exceeds Mickelson's gap over Cabrera at the Masters, so consider saving Furyk for the finale. Of course, the potential pitfall to that plan is that Furyk won't advance all the way to East Lake. Still, it's a minimal risk given he's played in all but one TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola since the FedExCup was introduced in 2007.
As for the Masters, the choices are obvious. And purely from the standpoint or entertainment, why wouldn't you want to ride either Woods or Mickelson at Augusta National?
Last week: Fredrik Jacobson; T15; $93,000,00
Overall Record: 13-for-15
Top 5s: 5
Top 10s: 9
Top 25s: 12
Missed Cuts: 2