The Career Second Slam: Golfers Who Finished Second At All Four Majors

Greg Norman is one of the golfers who achieved the Career Second Slam

You know what the Career Grand Slam is: Golfers who've won all four of the professional majors over the course of their careers. But what about the "Career Second Slam"? That refers to golfers who've finished second at all four of the majors.

It is sometimes called the Runner-up Slam or Second-Place Slam. So far, eight golfers have achieved that feat in their careers. And it is a feat: You have to be a very good golfer, as the names below will show, to post a runner-up finish at all four majors during your career. Most golfers never finish second at even one major, after all.

Interesting fact about the list of Career Second Slam winners: Only one of them (Jack Nicklaus) has also won the Career Grand Slam. The other Career Grand Slam winners, including Tiger Woods, did not or have not yet recorded a second-place in at least one of the majors.

List of Golfers With the Career Second Slam

Craig Wood
Craig Wood was the first to achieve it, doing so when he added a second-place finish in the U.S. Open in 1939. Wood actually lost all four of the majors in extra holes, the first golfer to do that (Greg Norman later did it, too). He did win two majors.
  • Masters: 1934, 1935
  • U.S. Open: 1939
  • British Open: 1933
  • PGA Championship: 1934
Arnold Palmer
It wasn't until 1964 that anyone joined Wood on this list. Palmer won seven majors and finished runner-up in 10 others. He never won the PGA Championship.
  • Masters: 1961, 1965
  • U.S. Open: 1962, 1963, 1966, 1967
  • British Open: 1960
  • PGA Championship: 1964, 1968, 1970
Jack Nicklaus
A three-time Career Grand Slam winner, he achieved the Career Second Slam four times over (and threw in some additional runner-up finishes in the Open Championship for good measure).
  • Masters: 1964, 1971, 1977, 1981
  • U.S. Open: 1960, 1968, 1971, 1982
  • British Open: 1964, 1967, 1968, 1972, 1976, 1977, 1979
  • PGA Championship: 1964, 1965, 1974, 1983
Tom Watson
Watson won eight majors and finished second in seven others. Like Palmer, he won three of the majors but never the PGA Championship.
  • Masters: 1978, 1984
  • U.S. Open: 1983, 1987
  • British Open: 1984, 2009
  • PGA Championship: 1978
Greg Norman
Norman won two majors and had seconds in eight others. Like Wood, he had losses in extra holes at all four majors.
  • Masters: 1986, 1987, 1996
  • U.S. Open: 1984, 1995
  • British Open: 1989
  • PGA Championship: 1986, 1993
Phil Mickelson
Five major wins, 11 major seconds.
  • Masters: 2015
  • U.S. Open: 1999, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2009, 2013
  • British Open: 2011, 2016
  • PGA Championship: 2001, 2014
Louis Oosthuizen
  • Masters: 2012
  • U.S. Open: 2015, 2021
  • British Open: 2015
  • PGA Championship: 2017
Dustin Johnson
  • Masters: 2019
  • U.S. Open: 2015
  • British Open: 2011
  • PGA Championship: 2019

Photo credit: "File:Greg Norman, Open 2008 (2).jpg"by Small-town hero is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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