Jon Rahm is widely considered as one of the hottest up-and-coming stars on the PGA Tour, for good reason.
Rahm is ranked No. 4 in the FedExCup standings, according to the PGA Tour’s official site, and has nine top-25 finishes through his first 13 professional events played.
It took just six events for Rahm to grab his first tour victory, which came on January 29 in the Farmers Insurance Open. Since then, he’s played in four additional events and finished in the top 10 in three of them.
But the 22-year-old Rahm’s career really began last year at the US Open, the event the PGA’s next big star will be competing in just around the corner.
Here’s what you need to know about Rahm’s career so far, and his prospects at Erin Hills.
1. The Coming out Party for Rahm Was as the Low Amateur at the 2016 U.S. Open
It’s impressive for any amateur to play in the U.S. Open, which Rahm did in 2016. It’s another thing entirely to finish in the top 25. But that’s exactly what Rahm did in 2016, when he finished tied for 23rd as a 21-year-old.
Rahm’s finish placed him above some well-known pros such as Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas, Rafa Cabrera-Bello, Danny Willett, Bubba Watson and the entire group that wound up missing the cut. His ability to navigate a brutally hard course while some of the other top pros in the world couldn’t, proved to be a big sign that his arrow was pointing upward.
It was a coming out party for the young pro, and it was a sign that he could compete with some of the best in the golf world. Since then, Rahm has only gotten better.
2. The Betting Odds on Rahm to Win 2017 US Open Show He’s a Favorite
If his stats don’t tell an impressive enough story, then the fact that he’s one of the favorites to actually win the 2017 US Open should explain it.
While defending champion Dustin Johnson is currently the favorite at +650 to win the event, there aren’t many names closer to him than Rahm, according to Odds Shark. After Johnson, it’s Rory McIlroy (+800), Jordan Spieth (+1000), Jason Day (+1200), Hideki Matsuyama (+1600), Justin Rose (+1800) and Sergio Garcia (+2000).
Then, there’s Rahm, right there with Sergio, holding down odds of +2000. This means that he’s more of a favorite than the likes of Rickie Fowler (+2500), Henrik Stenson (+2500), Adam Scott (+2800), Justin Thomas (+2800), Phil Mickelson (+2800) and a whole lot of other big names.
That’s some strong company to keep, and even more impressive that he has better odds to win the event than they do.
3. Rahm’s First PGA Tour Victory Came on a Ridiculous Eagle Putt
As GolfDigest.com broke down, Rahm’s first victory on the PGA Tour was filled with some exciting drama. At the Farmers Insurance Open at the infamous Torrey Pines, Rahm went onto the final hole with a one-shot lead. Obviously, he didn’t want to even risk anyone catching him, as he got to the final green in two shots, and then proceeded to drain this ridiculous putt, via the PGA TOUR’s official Twitter:
The celebration says it all, and Rahm wound up posting a seven-under 65 on that round to wrap up his first victory. If there was ever a way to get your first victory in style, this was the definition of it.
Now, the young star takes his talent into the 2017 US Open looking to grab his first major victory, and as you can see from the video above, he’s not a name who should be overlooked.
4. Rahm Has Already Made A Whole Lot Of Money During His Short Career
While Rahm has only been a pro for less than a year, he’s still managed to make plenty of money. According to his official PGA Tour player card, Rahm has net a ridiculously impressive $4,980,650 over just 25 events played.
This includes a cool $1 million in 2015-16 and more than $3,976,615 through just 13 events during his 2016-17 campaign. As you can imagine, winning an event brings home a huge haul, but it’s Rahm’s consistency that’s helped him grow his bankroll at a rapid rate.
After winning the Farmers Insurance Open, which brought him a paycheck of $1,206,000, less than two months later he finished second to Dustin Johnson at WGC-Dell Tech Match Play. That monstrous finish was worth another cool million, or $1,045,000 to be exact. Aside from that, he’s made over $90,000 in seven other events during his 2016-17 season alone.
5. Rahm’s 135-Yard Eagle on No. 12 in Round Three Was a Coming out Party
If the world didn’t know Rahm before hole No. 12 at the 2016 U.S. Open, they certainly did after. Rahm’s 135-yard eagle putt was so impressive that even Golf.com stated that he was “doing more than just making the cut” during the event.
For many, just making the cut at an event as prestigious as the U.S. Open as an amateur may have been enough. For Rahm, he apparently had no interest in fading into the dark after it, though, as he impressed over the final two rounds. Rahm finished off the 2016 Open at seven over, ahead of some of the biggest names in the game.
While a score of seven over doesn’t raise eyebrows immediately, consider the fact that FOX Sports ranked Oakmont as the No. 3 toughest U.S. Open course, and for good reason. Last year, aside from Dustin Johnson (-4), only three players finished under par, with two others at even par.