In this dogshit, miserable, civil unrest-bringing, beloved celebrity killing year of 2020, The Masters still occurring, for golf fans, is a brief reason for ruckus joy.
Long considered possibly the most coveted prize in golf, the Masters not only awards its winner a major championship, but does so under layers of pomp and circumstance that is not widely seen throughout sports.
First there’s Augusta National itself. Augusta may as well be the Vatican City of golf, except instead of cathedrals, statues, and emotive religious relics there are pimento cheese sandwiches and humblebrags about memberships and handicaps. Fuck ya.
Then there’s the jacket. That one. Trophies are cool. Championship rings are just plain baller. But I cannot even begin to imagine what it feels like when that jacket is put onto the winner’s back. You literally get to wear the spoils of your years of hard work and your nearly perfect weekend of precise golf. It’s like the affluent opposite of the scarlet letter.
So here, in the year our Satan 2020, who will wear the jacket? Who will be the king of the pimento cheese sandwiches? Will someone finally (please) punch Jim Nantz in the face? Let’s look at the board.
John Rahm – 26 years old, No Major Championships
While the Rahma Bull has never won a major, he has been constantly sniffing around one since turning pro in 2016. The 26 year old Spaniard, coached at A State by, among others, Phil Mickelson’s brother Tim, currently sits at the #2 spot in the world and has held the #1 spot in the past. For all of his talent, his is also known for having a short temper and throwing tantrums on the course. Overall though Rahm is an extraordinary player who should be in the hunt come Sunday.
Dustin Johnson, 36 years old, 1 Major Championship (2016 US Open)
Dustin Fuckin’ Johnson. DJ. The Great Son-In-Law. Just a king of a man. The current World #1 has won one major and tied for second in the other three. He has 23 wins overall on the PGA Tour and when he is on, motherfucker is he on. Among other things, he absolutely murders the ball and has long been one of the longest drivers on tour. He also loves blow? Whatever the case he has crushed 2020, winning the Travelers, the Northern Trust, T2’ng the PGA, and winning the Tour Championship on his way to becoming the 2020 Player of the year. What pandemic? DJ is my pick in this one.
Bryson DeChambeau, 27 years old, 1 Major Championship (2020 US Open)
Bryson DeChambeau won a major tournament this year after spending the first few years of his career as the weird kid who got followed around by a camera crew on practice rounds for no apparent reason and choosing to wear a scali cap in a misguided attempt at individualism in a populist game. He spent his offseason eating a lot and “naturallywinkwinknudge” putting on muscle so that he now murders the ball, putting him in a position to birdie if not eagle every hole. He still relies a little too much on his little math notebook and fear of hazards such as ants to win championships however so I don’t know how sustainable his success is.
Xander Schauffele, 27 years old, No Major Championships
Xander Schauffele is one of those guys who just oozes talent,. He’s been someone to watch since he came out of San Diego State in 2015, but just hasn’t quite sealed the deal yet. Schauffele, who sounds like either a Madden generated player or a bad guy in a worse Tom Cruise movie, has actually tied for second or third in three of the majors (The PGA seems to give him trouble) and is always in the hunt. A member of the legendary “Class of 2011” that also includes Spieth and JT, Xander Schauffele could finally win his major this weekend. It would be a huge payoff for a player who shows remarkable consistency in all phases of the game.
Poor fuckin Ricky man. At least there’s always Stokke.
Colin Morikawa, 23 years old, 1 Major Championship (2020 US Open)
After gaining notice on the tour last year, the young Angelino now has people asking themselves where his ceiling is, if there even is one. He won the US Open, which is obviously a gigantic accomplishment at 23, but he also won the Workday tourney and has played well throughout the season. An early sign of solid play this weekend from Morikawa could spell bad news for the rest of the field.
Rory McIlroy, 31 years old, Four Major Championships (2012, 2014 PGA Championship; 2011 US Open; 2014 Open Championship)
This list is just not complete without Rory, for a couple of reasons. First of all he is the best player of his generation, which is now firmly the last one thanks to the likes of JT, Spieth, etc. Secondly the Masters is the only major that has eluded him in his incredible career, something the media, fans, and the man himself are always brutally aware of. For awhile injuries, particularly a bothersome back, threatened to completely derail Rory’s career, but heres’s to hoping he can reutn to form starting Thursday.
Brooks Koepka, 30 years old, Four Major Championships, (2018, 2018 PGA Championship; 2017, 2018 US Open)
Brooksy. Brooks Was Here. My generation’s favorite player both for his dominant play, dry sense of humor, and heroics in the Ryder Cup all those years ago. It’s fair to note that Brooks has had a down year. He has had some injuries, specifically in his hips and knees if I recall correctly (feel you bro), that probably had a ton to do with his struggles. But you can never sleep on the Wizard from West Palm.
So there it is and look, I could go on for days with this list. Patrick Cantlay, Webb Simpson, and Justin Thomas could run the fuck away with this, making me look dumb and sending friend of the blog Patty Blackouts into a spiral as blow out tournaments suck to watch. Throw in the fact that 2020 has been flat out bizarro world and who knows. Maybe Hunter Biden caddies for Patrick Reed and Ol’ Estrangement goes 30 deep for the weekend. I don’t man.
I do know, however, that it is supposed to still be topping out in the mid-50’s and sunny this weekend in the Greater Boston area. So let’s crack a few brews and watch this beautiful dance and sometimes trainwreck unfold.
-President Elect Joey B.