Rory McIlroy might miss out on the 2020 Tour Championship in Atlanta next week so he can be present with his wife, Erica, as the couple prepares to welcome their first child into the world. NBC Sports revealed on air on Saturday, seemingly against McIlroy's wishes, that Erica Stoll McIlroy is pregnant with the couple's daughter, and will soon be giving birth.
McIlroy acknowledged the report after his third round at the 2020 BMW Championship. Perhaps the PGA Tour's tournament in the Chicago area is the perfect time to make the announcement. After all, that's where the couple first met back in 2012.
McIlroy had woken up late for his Sunday singles match in the 2012 Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club, and he needed help getting to the course in time to not be disqualified and lose his match against Keegan Bradley by missing their starting time.
It was Erica Stoll, who was working for the PGA of America's on-site team at the time, who arranged a police escort for McIlroy to the course. McIlroy won his match, the Europeans completed an improbable, record-tying final-day comeback in the biennial competition, and ultimately a couple was born.
After several years of dating, McIlroy and Stoll got engaged in Paris in 2015. They were married in Ireland in 2017. McIlroy admitted at The Northern Trust that he's struggled with focus and interest in golf amid the restart of the PGA Tour season.
While the four-time major winner said he hasn't been thinking about what and who is coming in the early portion of the resumption, McIlroy said he's been using his pending fatherhood to keep perspective on things.
"We're about to be parents very soon, so we're obviously super excited," he said. "Yeah, we've been sharing the news with friends and family, obviously, but I didn't think it was something that I really particularly needed to share out here.
It's a private matter, but we're really excited and can't wait for her to get here." Throughout the playoffs, McIlroy has been anticipating getting the call that he would have to come home to be by his wife's side for the delivery.
His caddie, Harry Diamond, has been keeping his phone in his pocket during the competitive rounds just in case. With two FedEx Cups in hand and more money than he'll ever need, a look at another FedEx Cup and $15 million more isn't worth it.
"I'm going to play in many more Tour Championships and it's only going to be the birth of your first child once. That trumps anything else," McIlroy said. "When you're going out to play and maybe not knowing whether you're going to finish the round or not, that's sort of a little bit -- look, it's definitely not an excuse.
I just haven't played well enough," he said. "But again, I keep talking about perspective. If you do play bad, I've got some awesome stuff coming up on the horizon, which is really cool, and it makes the bad days a lot easier to handle."