Scott Stallings advanced to the Tour Championship this past season to earn an invitation to play in the Masters Tournament this April. There was just one problem: While other players posted photos of their invites on social media, Stallings’ had yet to show up.
“Literally had been checking the mailbox five times a day,” Stallings said, “and then I got this random DM.”
The Instagram message, sent Sunday, had informed Stallings that his Masters invite had been delivered.
It was just to the wrong Scott Stallings.
This Scott Stallings works in real estate and lives in Georgia, near Atlanta, and has a wife named Jennifer as well. He explained to the tour pro that FedEx had dropped off the invitation, but he was 100% sure it wasn’t for him.
“I play, but wow!” the message read. “Nowhere near your level. It’s a very nice package complete with everything needed to attend. I think we have some confusion because of our names, our wife’s names and geographical location. I can be reached at [redacted] and I am more than happy to send this package to you.”
The other Stallings then sent photos of the invite and added, “I’m really not kidding, I promise.”
Stallings’ agent confirmed the veracity of the story to GolfChannel.com, as did the other Stallings himself.
Speaking with GolfChannel.com on Monday morning, the other Stallings said he and his wife had just arrived at their vacation home in St. Simons Island, Georgia, on New Year's Eve Day and were greeted with some mail, which included a package from Augusta National addressed to Stallings.
"You just got invited to the Masters!" Jennifer told her husband as he was unloading the car. "And not as a guest but to play!"
The other Stallings had always dreamed of attending the Masters, and Jennifer said there was a brief "twinkle in his eye, just for a second" about the thought of bringing his clubs and showing up on the first tee in April. But as an avid follower of the pro Stallings – Scott will often post highlights of the more famous Scott on his Facebook with a caption like, 'I'm doing good on the golf course today!' – the other Stallings knew they needed to send the invite to its rightful owner.
That's when they reached out to the pro Stallings, who is in Hawaii for the this week's Sentry Tournament of Champions. After some phone tag caused by the five-hour time difference, the two parties finally were connected via phone on Monday morning.
The pro Stallings explained how he'd thought his wife had hidden his Masters invite for Christmas, but when Christmas Day came and went, and his fellow Tour pros had all received theirs, he still didn't have his invite. As for the confusion, they came to the conclusion that it had something to do with Stallings' old management company having an office in St. Simons Island next to the Stallings couple's condo.
Before the phone conversation ended, the Stallingses exchanged information, and the other Stallings was asked to include his business card in the envelope to mail back to the actual Masters participant.
By Monday afternoon, he was at UPS to send off the invite.
The other Stallings isn't expecting anything out of his good deed.
"The story itself is fun enough," he said. "It's just crazy how it's exploded."
"I'd love to go," Jennifer added, noting they've tried a few times to win Masters tickets through the lottery. "But really, we'd just love to meet him. He seemed like such a nice guy."
As it turns out, they'll get to do both, as Stallings, speaking to The Associated Press from Kapalua, said that he planned to reward the couple.
"We're going to give him some practice-round tickets and take him to dinner on Monday night for doing the right thing," Stallings said.
The pro Stallings has played in two previous Masters, tying for 27th in 2012 and missing the cut in 2014. He had a resurgent year in 2022, beginning it outside the top 200 in the Official World Golf Ranking before five top-10s, including a runner-up at the BMW Championship, have helped him now reach No. 54, one off his career-best mark.
As for the other Stallings, who consistently shoots in the 90s, his Masters debut will have to wait.