Ben Hogan's Record in Playoffs and All the Scores

Ben Hogan Wheaties golf card from the 1950s
Quick: Do you think Ben Hogan had a great record in playoffs? Almost everyone will answer yes to that question. It only makes sense, given that Hogan is one of the greatest ever to play the game and has a historical reputation as a finisher and an intimidator. But, surprisingly, the correct answer is no: Ben Hogan had a losing record in playoffs, including in major championship playoffs. Against his two great rivals, Byron Nelson and Sam Snead, Hogan was a combined 0-4.

Below we'll run down the list of every playoff Hogan played in PGA Tour tournaments, starting with the four playoffs in which he participated in majors. But first, a few more questions and answers.

How many playoffs did Ben Hogan play on the PGA Tour? Answer: 20.

What was Hogan's playoff record? He won eight of those playoffs and lost 12.

Which golfers beat Hogan in a PGA Tour playoff? Byron Nelson (twice), Leonard Dodson, Chick Harbert, Jug McSpaden, Ray Mangrum, Fred Haas, Jimmy Demaret, Sam Snead (twice), Jack Fleck, Tommy Bolt.

Ben Hogan's Major Championship Playoffs

Hogan made it into a playoff four times in major championships, twice each at The Masters and U.S. Open. He won one of those playoffs and lost three.

1942 Masters: Hogan birdied the final hole of regulation to post 8-under, then sat around for two hours waiting for Nelson to finish. And Nelson came in at 8-under, too. The 18-hole playoff was refereed by Bobby Jones, and Nelson took the lead with an eagle on the eighth hole. Nelson won the playoff with a 69 to Hogan's 70.

1950 U.S. Open: Called "the Miracle at Merion" because Hogan won this major championship less than a year-and-a-half after his near-fatal auto accident. It was a three-man, 18-hole playoff against Lloyd Mangrum and George Fazio. Hogan shot 69, Mangrum 73 and Fazio 75.

1954 Masters: Hogan was the defending champ, but Snead birdied the 15th hole in regulation to tie, then beat Hogan in the 18-hole playoff by a stroke, 70 to 71.

1955 U.S. Open: Considered one of the biggest upsets in golf history, journeyman Jack Fleck won this 18-hole playoff with a 69 to Hogan's 72.

Hogan's Other PGA Tour Playoffs

In 16 "regular" PGA Tour playoffs, Hogan had a record of 7-9.

1940 Texas Open: Hogan lost to Byron Nelson in their first 18-hole playoff, scoring 71 to Nelson's 70.

1941 Oakland Open: A three-man, 18-hole playoff won by Leonard Dodson with a 71. Hogan shot 74 and Dutch Harrison had a 76.

1942 Los Angeles Open: Hogan's first playoff victory was the 11th PGA Tour win of his career. He beat Jimmy Thomson by a stroke, 72 to 73.

1942 Texas Open: Another 18-hole Texas Open playoff, and another loss for Hogan. Chick Harbert beat him, 72 to 76.

1944 Chicago Victory Open: Hogan faced Harold "Jug" McSpaden in this 18-hole playoff, and lost by three strokes. McSpaden had a 70, Hogan scored 73.

1945 Montgomery Invitational: Hogan got some revenge on McSpaden by birdying the 18th hole of the playoff to win by one, 68 to 69.

1946 Phoenix Open: During Hogan's 13-win season, he bogeyed the final hole of regulation to fall into a playoff against Herman Keiser. But Hogan won that playoff by two, 68 to 70.

1946 Pensacola Open Invitational: Hogan lost to Ray Mangrum, who shot 68 to Hogan's 71.

1948 Motor City Open: It was a one-stroke win in the 18-hole playoff for Hogan. He beat Dutch Harrison, 73 to 74.

1948 Western Open: Hogan defeated Ed "Porky" Oliver in the 18-hole playoff by nine strokes, 64 to 73. Hogan's 64 set a course record at Brookfield Country Club in Buffalo, New York.

1948 Portland Open Invitational: A three-way, 18-hole playoff with Fred Haas and Johnny Palmer. Hogan finished in the middle: Haas won with a 70, Hogan shot 71, Palmer 72.

1949 Long Beach Open: Hogan beat Jimmy Demaret over 18 holes, 67 to 69. (It was Demaret who coined one of the best quotes about Hogan, his friend. Asked about Hogan's reputation for not talking to his opponents and fellow-competitors, Demaret said, "He talks to me on every hole. He says, 'You're away.'")

1949 Phoenix Open: Payback for Jimmy Demaret, who beat Hogan 67 to 70. It was driving home from this tournament to Fort Worth that Hogan was badly injured when his car, in thick fog, collided with an oncoming bus that skidded into his lane.

1950 Los Angeles Open: Hogan's comeback tournament after making a recovery (that surprised doctors) from that crash, but Sam Snead beat him in the playoff, 72 to 76. Snead faced a 12-foot putt on the final hole of regulation to force the playoff, and made it after first having to back off when a man standing on a tree branch toppled to ground after the branch broke underneath him. The playoff was then delayed a week due to rain and the following Bing Crosby Pro-Am.

1959 Colonial National Invitation: It was nine years before Hogan faced another playoff, and in this one he beat Fred Hawkins by four, 69 to 73. It was Hogan's fifth win in the Colonial. And it was his 64th and final win on the PGA Tour.

1960 Memphis Open Invitational: Hogan's final playoff was another 18-holer, which means he never played a sudden-death playoff. This three-man playoff was won by Tommy Bolt with a 68. Hogan had a 69 and Gene Littler a 71.

Popular posts from this blog