Masters Cut Line 2013: Projecting Players Who Will Fail to Make the Cut

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistApril 11, 2013

AUGUSTA, GA - APRIL 11:  Bubba Watson of the United States tees off on the second hole during the first round of the 2013 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on April 11, 2013 in Augusta, Georgia.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Most of the talk regarding the first round of the 2013 Masters has focused on the early success of Marc Leishman, Tiger Woods' stead start and the debut of 14-year-old phenom Tianlang Guan.

But there are plenty of storylines taking place at the bottom of the field, too.

With so many high-quality players in the Masters field, some of them are bound to disappoint and perhaps not even make it to the weekend. There is still a lot of golf to play, and those who have struggled still have the second round in order to right the ship, but a handful of top players are definitely in dire straits right now.

Here are three big-name golfers who are currently on pace to miss the cut and simply won't be able to recover from a tough start in the second round.

Bubba Watson

Bubba Watson's Masters victory last year was the feel-good story of the season, but a repeat looks very unlikely at this point.

Watson hasn't had a great 2013 thus far with just two top-10 finishes in six tournaments and no victories. Watson also failed to win last year after capturing the green jacket, so he is mired in a fairly significant drought.

Watson has always been a hot-and-cold player, so it wouldn't be shocking to see him bounce back in the second round and find a way to make the cut, but he has an uphill climb at this point.

Watson was so good at last year's Masters because he took plenty of chances and they almost always worked out. Watson hasn't been as lucky or good through one round of the 2013 Masters.

He also had a hot putter last year, which helped carry him to the top.

Watson hasn't hit the big putts he has needed thus far, and when you add that to his inaccuracy off the tee and from the fairway, it just doesn't add up to a strong finish. As much as fans were pulling for Watson to win again, he probably won't be playing on Saturday.

Steve Stricker

Steve Stricker has been a top player for a very long time, but he has never been able to prevail at a major.

Some thought that the 2013 Masters could represent a chance for him to finally break through, but Strick has really struggled. It's somewhat surprising considering that Stricker has had a really solid 2013 campaign and presumably entered the tournament with a lot of confidence.

Prior to his 38th-place finish at the Shell Houston Open last month, Stricker had three consecutive top-five finishes and was consistently in the hunt.

He hasn't yet won a tournament this year, but he appeared to be on the precipice of doing so. Instead, Stricker probably won't even have an opportunity to play Augusta National this weekend.

The 46-year-old veteran is still one of the best in the world, but he just doesn't have it this week.

His opportunities to win a major are starting to lessen with each passing year, although he'll certainly be among the contenders in the other three majors of 2013. It's unfortunate that Stricker has been unable to find his groove at the Masters, but it just wasn't meant to be.

Stewart Cink

Stewart Cink was once known as one of the most consistent players on the PGA Tour, but that hasn't exactly been the case over the past couple years. Since winning the Open Championship in 2009, Cink hasn't won a PGA tournament and he has fallen significantly in the rankings.

Cink has had some flashes of brilliance thus far in 2013; however, they have been too few and far between.

Through eight events prior to the Masters, Cink had two top-10 finishes, but he also missed the cut on three occasions. Cink was hoping that his Masters performance would fit into the former group, but it seems much more likely that the latter will be true.

Cink has the ability to play great golf when he gets on a roll; however, it's hard to imagine him flipping the script at this point.

Cink finished the first round with a three-over 75 and he'll need to be significantly better than that in the second round in order to continue playing on Saturday. Cink has missed the Masters cut in three out of the past four years and it appears as though he will unfortunately add another one to that list this year.

Follow @MikeChiari on Twitter.


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