The Masters Tournament doesn’t really begin with the final nine today.
But players and longtime observers shouldn’t be surprised by the Sunday pin placements, especially on the incoming nine.
If the pattern holds, maybe someone will make a long putt to the back-left pin at No. 10 , as Ben Crenshaw did in 1984.
Who will be tempted by the far-right pin location at the short 12th?
And will someone make a putt on the final hole to the pin cut just beyond the front bunker, as Adam Scott did in 2013?
The Masters setup encourages excitement and drama on the final nine. If the weather cooperates as expected, it could be another Sunday shootout.
“It all depends on how they set the course up tomorrow,” Jason Day said. “If they set it up hard, you’ll have to give it more respect. If they set it up easier, you can take a few more chances and take that risk and get the reward.”
Over the past five years, the hole locations at Nos. 12, 13, 14, 16 and 18 have all been in their traditional locations for the final round.
The pins at Nos. 10, 11 and 17 have been set in the usual positions more often than not.
The only change in 2013’s final round was at No. 15. The pin was placed in the back middle portion of the green. Traditionally, the hole had been cut on the back right side of the green.
Saturday’s course setup encouraged scoring. Expect more of the same today.
“Looking where they put those pin positions, they wanted guys to move forward,” Ian Poulter said after shooting 70. “And guys certainly are going to move forward from the back of the pack.”