A newsletter unlike any other

The world’s best have all convened in eastern Georgia as we await the beginning of the 2018 Masters tournament. There have been many dramatic and memorable events at Augusta National, but this year’s edition may be the most highly anticipated. Whether you are rooting for one of the young guns or one of the veterans, the 82nd edition of the Masters promises to be a truly special occasion.

One Year Ago

The last edition of the Masters marked a great showdown between Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose. Starting the day in the final pairing, the duo distanced themselves early on the back nine. Rose held a two-shot lead on the 14th tee, but Sergio made birdie on 14 and eagle on 15 to tie for the lead. After the pair both missed putts on the 72nd hole, Sergio won with a birdie on the first playoff hole. This was Sergio’s first major championship, and he became the third Spaniard to slip on the green jacket.

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Sergio hosted the Champion’s Dinner on Tuesday night. His menu...was on the lighter side.

The course

The world's best take on the iconic Augusta National. The Alister MacKenzie 1933 masterpiece was designed with the help of Bobby Jones to be America's version of the famed Old Course at St. Andrews. Augusta National is the world's premier championship course, and over the years the course has changed to adapt to technology. The magnificent green complexes and undulating terrain make great iron play a necessity for success at Augusta. Read more about the course and its evolution over time in our Architect's Roundtable with Michael Clayton, Rob Collins and Keith Cutten.

The Masters Fried Egg-quarters

With the tournament starting, keep up-to-date with our articles and podcasts.

Brendan Porath, Sean Martin and Billy Draddy join the podcast to discuss the Masters. We chat about our favorite storylines, under the radar early-round pairings, Phil's practice round outfit, Masters scripting and much more. Listen to the podcast on iTunesStitcher or the website.

For those looking for picks for your fantasy leagues and DraftKings, Paulie came on the podcast to talk picks and strategy for your leagues. Listen to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher or the website.

If you are a reader, check out Paulie's picks and our longshots on the website.

Finally, be sure to check out the Augusta Archives, a series of podcasts with players who have played in the Masters. We talk about their experiences, the course, and how they take in the tournament today. On site are pods withStewart Hagestad, Craig Stadler, and Steve Scott.

Click here for full Fried Egg Masters Coverage.

Return of the Cat

For the first time since 2015, Tiger Woods is at Augusta National to do more than eat dinner. Crowds have come out in droves to watch him, creating Sunday roars on Monday and Tuesday. Tiger’s impact has been felt in the media center as well, as every player has been asked about the environment with Tiger involved. Tuesday also marked a historic day for practice rounds, as Tiger and a business casual Phil Mickelson played with Freddy Couples and Thomas Pieters.

While he hasn’t played in two years, Tiger has finished in the top six in 8 of his last 10 trips. Brendan Porath wrote a great piece on the return of Tiger.

The Other Big Storylines

While Tiger is getting a lot of the attention this week, there are plenty of other storylines. Sergio Garcia is trying to become only the third player to repeat at Augusta. Rory McIlroy is vying for the career grand slam. Phil Mickelson is trying to become the oldest player to win the green jacket. Rickie Fowler is still trying to get his first major championship. Read our full list of storylines here.

New Merchandise Venue

When Augusta National makes a change, they do it right and they do it big. Monday marked the unveiling of Augusta’s new merchandise center, and it is a sight to behold. The new building is double the size of the previous merchandise center and reportedly cost $50 million to make. It features 64 registers and 125 (!) variations of hats. The building also features an area to ship or store your purchases.With the change, the tournament expects to see much improved traffic flow and decreased time waiting in lines.

Moving into the 21st Century

One of the most impactful changes at this year’s Masters is the the tournament’s use of social media. The club is posting much more regularly and giving us insight into aspects that were previously unattainable. Here are a few of our favorites so far:

Fred Ridley’s background story

Sergio’s year with the green jacket

Hardest shots at Augusta National

The Non-Professionals

One of the most interesting of the storylines every year is the group of amateurs that earn their way to Augusta National. This year features six amateurs; Harry Ellis, Doug Ghim, Yuxin Lin, Joaquin Niemann, Matt Parziale, and Doc Redman. Read up on how each player earned their trip down Magnolia Lane here.

Notable Pairings

Thursday/Friday

10:42 AM/1:27 PM Tiger Woods/Marc Leishman/Tommy Fleetwood
10:53 AM/1:38 PM Sergio Garcia/Justin Thomas/Doc Redman
11:04 AM/1:49 PM Bubba Watson/Henrik Stenson/Jason Day
1:27 PM/10:31 AM Phil Mickelson/Rickie Fowler/Matt Kuchar
1:38 PM/10:42 AM Adam Scott/Rory McIlroy/Jon Rahm
1:49 PM/10:53 AM Jordan Spieth/Alex Noren/Louis Oosthuizen
2:00 PM/11:04 AM Justin Rose/Dustin Johnson/Rafael Cabrera-Bello

Coverage Schedule (EST)

Thursday/Friday

ESPN Coverage: 3:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Masters.com Featured Groups: 9:15 AM - 7:30 PM
Masters.com Amen Corner: 10:45 AM - 6:00 PM
Masters.com Holes 15/16: 11:45 AM - 7:00 PM

Saturday

CBS Coverage: 3:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Masters.com Featured Groups: 11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Masters.com Amen Corner: 12:30 PM - 6:00 PM
Masters.com Holes 15/16: 1:30 PM - 6:30 PM

Sunday

CBS Coverage: 2:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Masters.com Featured Groups: 10:45 AM - 7:00 PM
Masters.com Amen Corner: 12:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Masters.com Holes 15/16: 1:00 PM - 6:30 PM