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Masters Countdown: The longest streaks of making the cut

By Kyle Porter | Golf Writer

Angel Cabrera is a bad man at Augusta. (Getty Images)
Angel Cabrera is a bad man at Augusta. (Getty Images)

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The Masters is just around the corner (13 days, to be exact) and we're pretty excited. There's plenty of golf to be played between now and then but not enough writing about Augusta. We're trying to rectify that by doing a Masters countdown every day until the ceremonial tee shot.

In the last five years exactly 194 human beings have played in this little tournament we call the Masters. It is not golf's toughest test -- that would be one of the Opens -- but it might be its toughest ticket.

Not once in the last five tournaments has the field exceeded 99 golfers. And even when you're in, playing the weekend is difficult. From 2009-2012 the rule was top 44 plus anyone within 10 strokes of the lead. In 2013 it was top 50 and anyone within 10.

So it's a pretty incredible feat to have played every round of the Masters in the last five years. In fact, only eight golfers have done it.

Here they are ranked by how many strokes they took to complete five years worth of tournaments:

Tiger Woods: 1,411
Angel Cabrera: 1,412
Lee Westwood: 1,414
Phil Mickelson: 1,415
Nick Watney: 1,435
Steve Stricker: 1,438
Sergio Garcia: 1,446
Trevor Immelman: 1,452

No surprise here with Tiger and Phil at the top but how about that bad man Angel Cabrera? And Trevor Immelman?! Wow! Nick Watney was also a little surprising. And Lee Westwood was a little bit, too.

Of these Woods hasn't missed a cut since 1996, Cabrera since 2005, Westwood since 2006, Mickelson since 1997, Watney since 2007, Stricker since 2008, Garcia since 2008, and Immelman since 2006.

Adam Scott, Brandt Snedeker, Matt Kuchar, Dustin Johnson, and Ernie Els all missed a cut in the last five years, and thus this list.

The point in all of this is that it doesn't much matter how you've got it rolling coming down Magnolia Lane because once you get inside the ropes you have to deal with these guys, the dudes who have been there and done that more often than you've even watched them do it.

And here are a few other stats that stood out.

Appearances

34 of the 194 golfers who have competed have appeared in all of the last five Masters

23 of the 194 have appeared in four

21 of the 194 have appeared in three

38 of the 194 have appeared in two

78 of the 194 have appeared in one

The list of 34 who have played in all five is a who's who of former champs and the usual subjects but some notables are names like YE Yang, KJ Choi, Martin Kaymer, Ryo Ishikawa, Stewart Cink, and Tim Clark (wait, Tim Clark has played in each of the last five Masters?)

Best average finish

Min. 3 tournaments

This includes cuts (so if you finished first off the cut line you got a 52nd place, or whatever, if you finished last off the cut line you got a 96th).

Tiger Woods: 12
Angel Cabrera: 12
Lee Westwood: 13
Bo Van Pelt: 15
Matt Kuchar: 16
Adam Scott: 16
Justin Rose: 16
Phil Mickelson: 18

Of these golfers Van Pelt has played in three, Kuchar and Rose in four, everyone else in five.

Best average round

Min. 3 tournaments

Adam Scott: 70.53
Tiger Woods: 70.55
Angel Cabrera: 70.6
Lee Westwood: 70.7
Phil Mickelson: 70.75
Anthony Kim: 70.83

Anthony Kim! What is he doing on this list? Oh yeah, he shot a final-round 65 in 2010 and a second-round 65 in 2009.

Best average first round

Min. 3 tournaments

Lee Westwood: 69.2
Matt Kuchar: 69.25
Fred Couples: 70
Tiger Woods: 70.2
Charl Schwartzel: 70.25

If you've been keeping up you wouldn't be surprised that Couples makes this list. He's said repeatedly that he can navigate this course like nobody else -- and how great would it be if he was able to hang on until the very end one of these years?

Best average final round

Min. 3 tournaments

Adam Scott: 68.25
Bo Van Pelt: 69.33
Tiger Woods: 69.6
Ernie Els: 69.66
Ryan Moore: 69.66

Those are all the guys that average under 70 for their final round in the last five years. The two highest are YE Yang (74.66) and Henrik Stenson (74.33).

Unfortunately for Van Pelt, despite the strong numbers on this list, he didn't qualify for this year's Masters.

Most money earned

The Masters has given out $37 million in the last five years. Here are your top money earners:

Angel Cabrera: $2.6 million
Adam Scott: $2.5 million
Phil Mickelson: $2.1 million
Lee Westwood: $1.6 million
Charl Schwartzel: $1.6 million
Bubba Watson: $1.5 million
Tiger Woods: $1.3 million
Jason Day: $1.2 million

That's everyone over a million dollars. The most surprising to me is Westwood over a pair of winners as well as Tiger. He's struggled this season so it'll be interesting to see if he plays this course as well as he has the last few years.

For more golf news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnGolf and @KylePorterCBS on Twitter or Google+ and like us on Facebook.

 
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