Tony Finau knew early in his career that Scottie Scheffler was “special.”

Scottie Scheffler came along during the 2019-20 PGA Tour season, which was briefly interrupted by the pandemic.

Not many golfers and fans, both in and out of the game, knew the skills Scheffler possessed at the time. Tony Finau was even a kind of individual.

“When I first performed with Scottie, I didn’t really know who he was because he was a rookie on the PGA Tour and I performed with him at TPC Boston,” Finau said Tuesday before the event Texas Kids Houston Open.

“We play together, and after nine holes I feel like he’s shooting 7-under or whatever. I probably won’t pay any attention to it; I’m kind of focused on myself, sports. We get to the seventeenth and he makes another birdie. I look at my caddy and ask myself, “Man, this man is 8 or 9 years old now, and my caddy is wondering, “How about 11?”

Scottie Scheffler, PGA Tour

Scottie Scheffler smiles after making birdie on the 18th hole during the second round of Northern Faith 2020.
Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Photos

In the second round of Northern Faith 2020, the first event of the FedEx Cup Playoffs At TPC Boston, Scheffler burst into tears.

He birdied eight of his first 11 holes as the rookie moved up the leaderboard.

Three more birdies on the 14th, 15th and 16th holes followed, and when he arrived on the par-5 18th hole, Scheffler wanted a birdie to achieve golf’s outstanding rating: an illustrious 59.

Unsurprisingly, Scheffler actually birdied the 18th and holed a 4-footer to shoot 59.

“I played with him and that was the first time I heard of him. It was the first time I performed with him,” Finau said.

“That gave you an idea – maybe not the first time I’d heard of him, but I vaguely knew who he was from the Korn Ferry Tour. I knew he was a very good participant. But that was definitely my first time performing with Scottie; He shot a 59 at TPC Boston and I knew from that second he was picky.”

Scheffler finished fourth this week, 13 shots behind Dustin Johnson, who shot an absurd 30-under for the match. However, Scheffler qualified for the Tour Championshipan impressive feat for any PGA Tour competitor, let alone a rookie.

Scottie Scheffler, Tony Finau, The Masters

Scottie Scheffler, Tony Finau and Adam Scott shake hands after completing their second rounds at the 2022 Masters Match.
Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Photos

Since then, Scheffler has produced the 2021 and 2023 models Ryder Cup Groups triumphed Augusta statewide in 2022 and rose to number one worldwide. He currently has eight PGA Tour victories to his name, two of which have come in his last two starts.

“When he won the Masters, I did the first two rounds with him and I knew he would be pulling up the green jacket on Friday after that,” Finau added.

His tee-to-green metrics have been off the charts over the last two seasons, prompting many to do so Rate him Tiger Woods. Scheffler doesn’t often make a mistake, finding fairways and greens at a rate not seen since Woods won the Open Championship in 2006 PGA Championship.

But Scheffler’s charming personality and his love for his family are also contagious.

“I’ve done enough rounds with him to know what a nice player he is, but I don’t think it beats the person he is,” Finau said.

“I think he’s pretty implausible for our sport and it’s cool to see how successful he is.”

Jack Milko is a golf writer for SB Nation’s Playing By. Remember to take a look @_PlayingThrough for additional golf protection. You can follow him on Twitter @jack_milko so beautiful.

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