clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

A Different Look At The 2016 Cubs' Great Start

New, 55 comments

Here's a comparison with other Cubs playoff teams.

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

You've undoubtedly heard about the Cubs' 22-6 start in comparison with other Cubs teams from history and that it's the best start since 1907. Here's another comparison from recent major-league history:

I thought I'd take a somewhat different look back, checking out where all the Cubs postseason teams in the divisional-play era were after 28 games. I also looked at where three of the best teams of this era were after that many games, the 2001 Mariners (who wound up with 116 wins), the 1998 Yankees (114 wins) and the 1984 Tigers (104 wins).

Team W L Pos GB/GA Run differential
2015 Cubs
15 13 2nd
-6.5 0
2008 Cubs
17 11 2nd -0.5 +50
2007 Cubs
14 14 2nd -5 +33
2003 Cubs
16 12 1st +1 +45
1998 Cubs
15 13 4th -3 +13
1989 Cubs
16 12 3rd -0.5 -6
1984 Cubs
17 11 1st +0.5 +30
2001 Mariners
22 6 1st +9 +58
1998 Yankees
22 6 1st +2.5
+51
1984 Tigers
24 4 1st +6 +93

As you can see, Cubs postseason teams before this year were all off to at least decent starts through 28 games, some a bit better than others. In 2007, they had a positive run differential despite being at .500, and wound up losing 17 of their next 25 games before going on a great second-half run.

This year's Cubs compare favorably to the three other clubs I've listed in this table, even to the 1984 Tigers, who got off to a fantastic 35-5 start. The Cubs' current run differential of +98 is even better than Detroit's was that year after 28 games.

I'm going to run this feature on an occasional basis during this season, because this year's Cubs are doing amazing things, and I think we should keep track of how they shape up historically.