There were 28 rookies on the PGA Tour for the 2022-23 season, the same number that there were a year ago. It’s also the most since the Tour had 35 newbies for the 2011 season.
Of those 28, none made the 30-man field at the Tour Championship, the first time rookies were shut out of East Lake Golf Club since the 2020-21 season. Notably, there have never been more than two rookies in the season finale in the 17-year history of the FedEx Cup.
While plenty of these first-year players made some noise along the way this season, there can only be one Rookie of the Year. Players are still vying for the honor, as the FedEx Cup Fall series events count towards consideration.
There are three events left: the World Wide Technology Championship in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico; the Butterfield Bermuda Championship in Bermuda and the RSM Classic in St. Simons Island, Georgia. Ballots for Rookie of the Year will be sent out after the RSM.
For now, let’s take a look at some of the top candidates for the Arnold Palmer Award with their FedEx Cup ranking in parantheses.
Let’s start with the two rookies who took home some tournament hardware this season.
Nico Echavarria shot a final-round 68 at Grand Reserve Golf Club in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico, in March to win the 2023 Puerto Rico Open. Echavarria finished at 21 under and outlasted Akshay Bhatia by two shots in the opposite-field event.
He did have two other top-25 finishes but what counts against Echavarria is since his win, he’s missed the cut in 15 of his next 17 events. His last made cut was back in April.
Norrman was the only other rookie winner on the PGA Tour this season.
Like Echavarria, Norrman’s win came in an opposite-field event at the Barbasol Championship. A final-hole bogey cost him a win in regulation but he went on to hoist the trophy after surviving a playoff.
Norrman made 17 of 29 cuts and has two top-10s in addition to his win. He made $1.6 million in on-course…