Bubba masters Augusta again

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AUGUSTA, Ga. -- In his life, Bubba Watson of Bagdad, Fla. (pop: 1,490), has purchased exactly one sport coat. It's pink. He's never worn it.

He has two sport coats he didn't pay for. They're green. He likes wearing those a lot.

He won his second one Sunday at the Masters, where, as usual, he spent the week turning golf upside down, inside out and every which way but normal.

For instance ...

Q: What other pro do you know who would run a five-question trivia contest on his Twitter feed less than three hours before he was supposed to tee off in the final group of the biggest tournament of the year?

A: Nobody.

Q: What other pro do you know would answer the following question in his victory news conference this way? "Do you feel like this validates you as an elite player?"

Bubba: "No, no. I just got lucky enough to have two green jackets. ... I'm just trying to keep my tour card. ... I'm not out here for everybody to tell me how great I am. I play golf because I love it."

Q: What other pro do you know would try to knock a golf ball through a hole in a tree, over the water and onto the green on the par-5 15th in two, with a 3-shot lead, on a Masters Sunday, against all sense, reason and logic?

A: Only Gerry Lester "Bubba" Watson, Jr.

"We were shocked," said Michael Greller, the caddy for Jordan Spieth, who was playing alongside Bubba and trying to fight back from 3 shots behind. "We were watching him over there and we're both like, 'What in the WORLD is Bubba doing?'"

What he was doing is what he's always doing, which is being crazier than a jar of bees.

"That's Bubba," said Ted Scott, Bubba's caddy. "For him, it was no big deal. For me, it would've been a HUGE deal."

So instead of laying up, Bubba did something very Bubba. He hit a knock-down 6-iron 190 yards under, over and through nothing but jail, onto the green, and off again, but (phew!) short of more water, and wound up making a 5. He could've also made a 7, letting the world back into the tournament.

"You know me," Bubba said with a cookie-stealing grin afterward.

"Freak show," Scott said.

The Freak Show doesn't want to be a great golfer and he's not. He's a great Masters golfer. His sky-high right-to-left game was born for Augusta National. Seventeen men have won two or more green jackets now, among them Ben Hogan, Tom Watson and Byron Nelson.

Bubba Watson fits in with them like a sloppy joe at the opera.

Q: How many pros do you know who own a General Lee, a Hovercraft, and Tiger Woods' old house?

Bubba bought it last year -- yes, the fire hydrant is still there -- and has now christened it with two more majors to go with all the ones the previous guy won in it.

Q: How many pros do you know who swing pink drivers, are married to 6-foot-2 Canadians, cry slightly more often than the "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills," fall off every shot like they're leaving the scene of a crime, and taught themselves the game?

Q: How many pros do you know who could withstand the kind of front-9 attack that 20-year-old WonderBoy Spieth gave him?

The two were tied going into the day. Spieth immediately went up two by the third hole. On the par-3 fourth came what was surely a Spieth spear through the heart -- a hole-out from the bunker for a birdie. Except Bubba matched his miracle with a big-stone birdie of his own.

On the par-3 sixth, Spieth bared his teeth again, hitting it to kick-in distance. Except Bubba matched it with a sensational two of his own.

"Very big," Bubba admitted.

Then Bubba had some daggers of his own -- birdies on Nos. 8 and 9 compared to Spieth's two bogeys. As he walked off the ninth green, Bubba and his buttoned-up collar had buttoned up a 2-shot lead that would hold up the rest of the day, despite Bubba's attempts to give it away on 15.

Guess it's true what they say: The Masters ends on the front nine Sunday.

"That was some incredible golf he played," Spieth admitted.

"Bubba kept taking every punch we threw at him," Geller said afterward, rubbing his forehead. "That's why he's Bubba."

Which is weird for a guy who took the last green jacket he won, in 2012, and cocooned himself away. He didn't win a single tournament from that moment through the rest of that year and all of 2013.

"Winning a green jacket and adopting a baby [a week before the 2012 Masters], it was a lot to deal with," Bubba said.

But this offseason, Bubba's pastor, Judah Smith of Seattle, suggested he read Philippians 4:11: "I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances."

Smith told him, "As a kid, you dreamed about playing on the PGA Tour. You dreamed about playing in the Masters. You're doing that. Why don't you just go ahead and rejoice in the circumstances of your life?"

And so it was -- as he stepped to the 18th tee box Sunday -- that the circumstances of Bubba Watson was very content indeed. His second 44 Long was a lock. He belted a pink-striped 4-wood an ungodly distance, right down the sprinkler line.

His caddy turned to him and said, "Are you from Mars?"

No, he's from Bagdad, Fla., where pink-and-green jackets bloom like azaelas.

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