Some of these players get “best” by default, as they were the only player to wear the number for the Cubs.
The following uniform numbers have never been worn by any Cubs player: 65, 69, 70, 74, 75, 77, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 95, 97 and 98.
Kris Bryant wore No. 77 in spring training 2014. Now that would have been a cool number for him to choose as a permanent MLB number.
One last reminder that you can read stories behind many of these numbers in “Cubs By The Numbers,” by Kasey Ignarski, Matt Silverman and me, a fun look through the history of our favorite franchise’s jersey digits. An updated version of the book came out in 2016. Get yours here.
60: Five Cubs players have worn this number. Cory Mazzoni made eight appearances for the 2018 Cubs with a 1.04 ERA and 1.154 WHIP. That was good for 0.3 bWAR, topping all No. 60s.
61: Babe Phelps, a catcher who played in 47 games for the Cubs in 1933 and 1934 and hit .286/.295/.481, had 0.1 bWAR, the only one of the four Cubs No. 61s to have a positive bWAR number.
62: Jose Quintana has been worth 4.5 bWAR in his two and a half Cubs seasons and gets the honor. Bob Howry posted 2.8 bWAR in four Cubs seasons for second-best at No. 62.
63: Kevin Gregg had two seasons in blue pinstripes. One was bad (2009), the other pretty good (2013). All told, 0.6 bWAR as a Cub, best among the four Cubs players to wear No. 63.
64: Emilio Bonifacio eked out 0.8 bWAR to lead the three Cubs players who wore this number (Justin Berg and Jaime Garcia were the others).
66: Munenori Kawasaki (0.3 bWAR in 2016) and Rafael Dolis (0.1 bWAR in 2011) are the only Cubs to wear this number.
67: Tsuyoshi Wada (1.9 bWAR, 2014-15).
68: Jorge Soler (2.4 bWAR, 2014-16).
71: Wade Davis (1.8 bWAR, 2017). The only other Cub to wear this number was Gonzalez Germen (-0.2 in eight games in 2015).
72: Robert Machado (0.0 bWAR, .238/.286/.358 in 74 games in 2001-02).
73: Adbert Alzolay (-0.2 bWAR, 2019).
76: Daniel Garibay (-0.7 bWAR, 2000).
94: Felix Heredia (-0.7 bWAR, 2001). Heredia posted 0.2 bWAR wearing No. 49 from 1998-2000. He thought switching the digits would change his luck. Whoops, no.
96: Bill Voiselle (-0.3 bWAR, 1950). There’s a good story behind this number choice. Voiselle had some solid years for the Giants in the 1940s, including finishing fifth in MVP voting in 1944, but by the time he got to the Cubs he was pretty much done. He wore the number because his hometown was Ninety Six, South Carolina. Per Wikipedia, the origin of this town’s name is a mystery to this day. Until Mitch Williams (1993) and Turk Wendell (1997) donned No. 99, Voiselle’s No. 96 was the highest number worn by a player in MLB history.
99: So Taguchi, an outfielder who had some decent years for the Cardinals in the early 2000s, was signed by the Cubs before the 2009 season and played the entire season at Triple-A Iowa. He was added to the Cubs’ active roster for the last couple of weeks of that season after Alfonso Soriano went down with knee surgery (that he probably should have had in April when he was first injured). Taguchi went 3-for-11 (.273) in six games, good for -0.1 bWAR. The only other Cubs player to wear No. 99 was Todd Hundley, the not-very-loved son of beloved 1969 Cub Randy Hundley. Todd had wanted to wear his father’s No. 9 but at the time it was taken by Damon Buford, and Buford’s dad Don had also worn No. 9 as a World Series champion in Baltimore. So Damon got to keep it, and Todd wore No. 99 until Buford was let go in May 2001. Hundley had -1.0 bWAR all told in 2001 and didn’t hit well before or after the number change, so I’m giving this honor to Taguchi.