Rosburg at the 1956 U.S. Open
|Full name||Robert Reginald Rosburg|
October 21, 1926|
San Francisco, California
May 14, 2009 (aged 82)|
Palm Springs, California
|Children||Robert, Deborah, Bruce|
|Former tour(s)||PGA Tour|
|Number of wins by tour|
|Best results in major championships|
|Masters Tournament||T4: 1955|
|U.S. Open||2nd/T2: 1959, 1969|
|The Open Championship||DNP|
|PGA Championship||Won: 1959|
|Achievements and awards|
Early years, college
Rosburg was born in San Francisco, California. He played golf as a junior at the Olympic Club, and at the age of 12, he faced the then-retired baseball Hall of Famer, Ty Cobb, in the first flight of the club championship, and beat Cobb 7 and 6. Rosburg says Cobb was gracious in defeat and shook the young Rosburg's hand, but Cobb took so much kidding from the other Olympic Club members that for many years, Rosburg hardly ever saw Cobb back at the club. Rosburg was an outstanding baseball player at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California during the 1940s, and almost chose baseball as a career over golf. He graduated from Stanford in 1949, and turned pro in 1953. He is a member of the Stanford Athletic Hall of Fame.
PGA Tour career
During his career, Rosburg was one of the most consistent top-10 finishers on the PGA Tour. Rosburg won the Vardon Trophy in 1958 for the lowest average score (70.11) on tour that year. Rosburg's career year was 1959, when he finished seventh on the money list and was named to the Ryder Cup team, after winning the PGA Championship and finishing second in the U.S. Open. In 1969, he won the PGA Club Professional Championship. He won six tour events during the course of his career, before moving into semi-retirement after the 1972 season, his most successful financially. That year, he won the Bob Hope Desert Classic by one stroke over Lanny Wadkins.
The 1959 PGA Championship was played at the Minneapolis Golf Club in St. Louis Park, Minnesota. Rosburg won with a 72-hole score of 277 by one stroke over Jerry Barber and Doug Sanders. Rosburg claimed that he won the 1959 PGA Championship without ever hitting a practice shot during that week, except for a few chips and puts. He came close to winning a second major that year, finishing 2nd at the U.S. Open to Billy Casper. He also finished in a three-way tie for 2nd at the 1969 U.S. Open, one stroke behind Orville Moody.
After his playing days on the PGA Tour finished in the mid-1970s, Rosburg became a commentator for ABC sports television. He pioneered the now-common practice of roving on the golf course and reporting from the fairways. At the time of his death, he was the longest serving active golf announcer on television, with more than 30 years behind the microphone. He is remembered for his catch phrase, "He's got no chance, Jim", which Rosburg would utter whenever he encountered a golfer who had hit his ball into a seemingly impossible position (usually behind a tree or in deep grass), upon which the player would then produce a miraculous recovery. The "Jim" is in reference to ABC commentator Jim McKay. Rosburg is also credited with helping ABC hire Judy Rankin, who was the first full-time female golf commentator to cover men's events, including the major championships. Rosburg worked nearly three decades as a commentator with Dave Marr, who like Rosburg won a single PGA Championship.
Professional wins (10)
PGA Tour wins (6)
|1||Dec 12, 1954||Miami Open||−7 (71-68-69-65=273)||1 stroke||Bo Wininger|
|2||Sep 2, 1956||Motor City Open||−4 (70-70-72-72=284)||Playoff||Ed Furgol|
|3||Oct 7, 1956||Convair-San Diego Open||−18 (70-68-67-65=270)||2 strokes||Dick Mayer|
|4||Aug 2, 1959||PGA Championship||−3 (71-72-68-66=277)||1 stroke||Jerry Barber, Doug Sanders|
|5||Jan 22, 1961||Bing Crosby National Pro-Am||−6 (69-67-74-72=282)||1 stroke||Roberto De Vicenzo, Dave Ragan|
|6||Feb 13, 1972||Bob Hope Desert Classic||−16 (66-69-72-70-67=344)||1 stroke||Lanny Wadkins|
PGA Tour playoff record (1–5)
|1||1954||Motor City Open||Ed Furgol||Won with par on first extra hole|
|2||1957||Caracas Open||Al Besselink||Lost to birdie on first extra hole|
|3||1958||Eastern Open Invitational||Jack Burke, Jr., Art Wall, Jr.||Wall won with birdie on first extra hole|
|4||1961||Greater Seattle Open Invitational||Jacky Cupit, Dave Marr||Marr won with birdie on first extra hole|
|5||1961||Bakersfield Open||Jack Fleck||Lost to birdie on first extra hole|
|6||1962||Orange County Open Invitational||Tony Lema||Lost to birdie on third extra hole|
Major championship is shown in bold.
Other wins (3)
Other senior wins (1)
|Year||Championship||54 holes||Winning score||Margin||Runners-up|
|1959||PGA Championship||6 shot deficit||−3 (71-72-68-66=277)||1 stroke||Jerry Barber, Doug Sanders|
Note: Rosburg never played in The Open Championship.
CUT = missed the half-way cut (3rd round cut in 1960 PGA Championship)
DQ = disqualified
"T" = tied
|The Open Championship||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
- Most consecutive cuts made – 7 (twice)
- Longest streak of top-10s – 2 (three times)
- Goldstein, Richard (May 15, 2009). "Bob Rosburg, Golfer and TV Analyst, Dies at 82". The New York Times.
- Kroichick, Ron (May 16, 2009). "Bob Rosburg dies - S.F. native won '59 PGA". San Francisco Chronicle.
- "Bob Rosburg". ABC Medianet. Archived from the original on July 4, 2008.
- Johnson, Sal (May 15, 2009). "A special tribute to Bob Rosburg". Golf Observer. Archived from the original on May 18, 2009.
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