Big names making putter changes at the Masters

Justin Thomas' Scotty Cameron Futura X 5 putter David Dusek/Golfweek

Big names making putter changes at the Masters

Equipment

Big names making putter changes at the Masters

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AUGUSTA, Ga. – Nothing in the equipment world is ever official until Thursday morning, when golfers have to decide which 14 clubs are going into their bags and which clubs they tinkered with earlier in the week are staying on the bench.

But this is Masters week, the first major of the season, and most players in the 87-man field have been preparing for weeks, if not months. Equipment changes are few and far between.

The biggest changes typically seen are players opting for a wedge that has more bounce if conditions are especially soft or adding a touch of loft to their drivers if fairways are wet and they want to maximize carry distance.

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That’s what made seeing so many big-name players using different putters on Monday so eye-catching.

Lots of things could change between now and Thursday when these players tee off, but a few things are certain: Each of them understands that they’ve got to make some putts to win the Masters, and they are all willing to make changes if they think a new putter will get that done.

Zach Johnson

Zach Johnson

Zach Johnson used a TaylorMade Spider X putter at Augusta on Monday. (David Dusek/Golfweek)

Zach Johnson won the 2007 Masters and 2016 British Open using a SeeMore FGP putter.

The Iowan is almost synonymous with it, yet on Monday he practiced using a copper-toned TaylorMade Spider X mallet. Johnson used the putter at the Valspar Championship last month but benched it at the Players Championship in favor of his old SeeMore.

Johnson has fallen from 60th on the PGA Tour in strokes gained putting last season to 119th (-0.033), so maybe this is a change we should have seen coming.

Justin Thomas

Justin Thomas' Scotty Cameron putter

Justin Thomas’ Scotty Cameron putter (David Dusek/Golfweek)

Justin Thomas won the 2017 PGA Championship using a Scotty Cameron for Titleist Futura X5 and played the putter throughout 2018 before switching to a Scotty Cameron Phantom X 5 putter in January.

On Monday, the old Futura X5 was back in the bag when he played his practice round with Tiger Woods and Fred Couples.

Patrick Reed

Patrick Reed's Odyssey Pro putter

Patrick Reed’s Odyssey White Hot Pro #3 putter (David Dusek/Golfweek)

Last year, Patrick Reed won at Augusta National using an Odyssey White Hot Pro #3. This season, he has been dabbling with a Scotty Cameron Newport prototype putter, using it at several events including the Players Championship.

Two weeks ago, at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, Reed put the Odyssey back in his bag and it was still there Monday when he played at Augusta National.

Jimmy Walker

Jimmy Walker's TaylorMade putter

Jimmy Walker’s TaylorMade putter (David Dusek/Golfweek)

Jimmy Walker had played a heel-toe-weighted blade putter for most of his career, but last season he used a mallet-style TaylorMade Spider Tour Red in a few PGA Tour events before gaming a Tyson Lamb prototype during the FedEx Cup Playoffs.

This year he had been playing a Scotty Cameron putter, but last week at the Valero Texas Open he opted for a navy-toned TaylorMade Spider X. On Monday at Augusta, the TaylorMade was still in the bag.

Aaron Wise

Aaron Wise's Odyssey putter

Aaron Wise’s Odyssey putter (David Dusek/Golfweek)

As a rookie last season, Aaron Wise finished 59th in strokes gained putting with an average of 0.238, but on the eve of his Masters debut, the former University of Oregon All-American ranks 141st with an average of -0.168.

Wise had been playing an Odyssey O-Works Red V-Line Fang CH putter, but Monday he practiced with an Odyssey Metal-X Milled 2-Ball that he played with a few seasons ago.

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