Most Second-Place Finishes on the PGA Tour

Finishing second in a PGA Tour tournament is a very good accomplishment. It's not the goal — winning is the goal. But golfers who finish second a lot also tend to be among the tour's best. In the history of the PGA Tour, which golfers have finished second the most? The list of those golfers contains a few surprises.

Probably the two biggest surprises for most readers are these: "Lighthorse" Harry Cooper is tied for fifth-most seconds ever; and Tiger Woods, while on the list, is not among the Top 10. In factor, Cooper had six more seconds than, so far, Woods does. This isn't because Cooper got into contention more often than Woods, though. It's because when Tiger got into contention, he was more likely to win than not.

See also: PGA Tour career wins — all-time leaders

The List: PGA Tour Career Second-Place Finishes

Golfers are listed in order of their runner-up finishes in official PGA Tour events. Also included are their win totals, plus the number of major championships won by each.

Golfer 2nds Wins Majors
Jack Nicklaus 58 73 18
Sam Snead 57 82 7
Ben Hogan 44 64 9
Arnold Palmer 38 62 7
Harry Cooper 37 29 0
Phil Mickelson 37 45 6
Horton Smith 34 30 2
Gene Littler 33 29 1
Byron Nelson 33 52 5
Gary Player 33 24 9
Lee Trevino 33 29 6
Tom Watson 32 39 8
Billy Casper 31 51 3
Jim Furyk 31 17 1
Greg Norman 31 20 2
Tiger Woods 31 82 15
Davis Love III 30 21 1
Jug McSpaden 30 17 0
Tom Kite 29 19 1
Jimmy Demaret 28 31 3
Dow Finsterwald 28 11 1
Lloyd Mangrum 28 36 1
Gene Sarazen 28 38 7
Vijay Singh 28 34 3
Craig Wood 28 21 2
Art Wall 27 14 1
Hale Irwin 25 20 3
Cary Middlecoff 25 39 3
Tom Weiskopf 25 16 1

What are the biggest gaps between wins and runners-up on the PGA Tour? Among golfers with more wins than seconds, Woods is way ahead of anyone else with a gap of 51: 82 wins, 31 seconds. Snead is second at 25 (82 wins 57 seconds), and Palmer third at 24 (62 wins, 38 seconds).

Among golfers with fewer wins than seconds, Dow Finsterwald is the "leader." Finsterwald made the list above with "only" 11 wins, the lowest number. But he had 28 runner-up finishes, a gap of 17. Furyk (17 wins, 31 seconds) and Art Wall Jr. (14 wins, 28 seconds) both had gaps of 14.

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