Opening Data

Today's game will be the Cubs' 151st season opener in league play.

Their first was on May 8, 1871: a 14-12 victory over the visiting Cleveland Forest Citys at the Union Grounds in their National Association debut.

The Cubs, then known as the White Stockings, suspended operations for 2 seasons following the fire that devastated Chicago in October of 1871.

The Whites played 2 more openers in the National Association, defeating the Philadelphia Athletics, 4-0, at home in 1874 and routing the Keokuk (Iowa) Westerns, 15-1, on the road in 1875.

Their first National League opener came the next year, when the Whites won at Louisville, 4-0, on April 25, 1876.



Today's season opener will be only the eighth that the Cubs have played in March -- and just the second at home.

On March 31, 2008, they lost to the Brewers, 4-3, in 10 innings.

The Cubs have opened the season on the road in March at Miami (1998 and 2018), vs. the Mets at Tokyo (2000), vs. the Mets at New York (2003), at Pittsburgh (2014), and at Texas (2019).

The earliest date of any of those games was March 28, at Texas.



In all of their 147 openers as a member of the National League, the Cubs have won 79 games, lost 66 and tied 2.

That is a .544 winning percentage, which is 32 points higher than their .512 in all NL games after Opening Day.

They are 5-2 in their last 7 openers, beginning in 2016. Before that, in 2007-15, they were 1-8, losing 6 straight before winning in 2013 at Pittsburgh.



Today will be the seventh time that the Cubs have opened at home against the Brewers, and the third in the last 4 seasons.

They lost the first 2 in extra innings, 6-3, in 12 innings, in 2005 and 4-3, in 10 innings, in 2008.

They won, 9-5, in 2010; lost, 7-4, in 2013; won, 3-0, in 2020; and won, 5-4, in 2022.

The Cubs have opened at home vs. the Cardinals 37 times; vs. the Pirates and Reds, 27 times each; the Phillies, 10; the Mets, 9; and the Expos/Nationals, 7.



This will be fourth consecutive season that the Cubs' season opener has been at home.

They have not done that since 1991-94, the last of 6 years in a row when the Cubs began the season at Wrigley Field.

Today's season opener will be only their 10th at home in the past 28 years. The others were in 1996, 2001, 2008, 2011-12, 2015 and 2020-22.


Today's game will be just the Cubs' 59th home opener since 1876 that also is their season opener.

In such previous openers, they are 30-26-2, a .534 winning percentage, which is equivalent to an 87-75 record over a full, 162-game season.

The Cubs are just 45-44, .506, in their 89 season openers on the road.

They are 56-50-1, .528, in all home openers at Wrigley Field, and 24-25-1, .490, in home openers at Wrigley that also were season openers.



In all 147 home openers, whether or not preceded by any road games, the Cubs are 82-63-2 -- a .565 winning percentage, equivalent to 91-71 over a full schedule.

The Cubs have a .557 percentage, 8 points lower, in all home games after Opening Day.

Through 1927, the Cubs were 37-14-1 in their first game at home. Since then, they are just 45-49-1, including 5 consecutive losses in 2011-15 and 4 in a row in 1946-49 and 1991-94.

They won each of their 8 home openers in 1915-22 and 4 straight 5 times, but the last of those times was in 1950-53.

They won 3 in a row in 2018-20.



The Cubs have posted 12 walk-off victories in their first home game of a season.

Here they are, in chronological order:

1912: Jimmy Sheckard's 10th-inning home run beat the Reds, 5-4

1916: Vic Saier's 11th-inning single beat the Reds, 7-6

1945: Don Johnson's 9th-inning single beat the Cardinals, 3-2

1952: Bill Serena's 2-run, 9th-inning double beat the Cardinals, 5-4

1961: Sammy Taylor's 2-run, 9th-inning home run beat the Braves, 3-2

1969: Willie Smith's pinch-hit, 2-run, 11th-inning home run beat the Phillies, 7-6

1971: Billy Williams' 10th-inning home run beat the Cardinals, 2-1

1973: Rick Monday's 9th-inning walk beat the Expos, 3-2

1976: Rick Monday's 9th-inning single beat the Mets, 5-4

1978: Larry Biittner's 9th-inning home run beat the Pirates, 5-4

1996: Mark Grace's 10th-inning single beat the Padres, 5-4

2017: Anthony Rizzo's 9th-inning single beat the Dodgers, 3-2.

In the 1952 game, the Cubs trailed, 4-1, before scoring 4 runs in the ninth.


Two other games deserve special mention:

In 1965, against St. Louis, Ernie Banks hit a 2-out, 3-run homer in the bottom of the 9th to tie the game at 9, then Ron Santo hit a double in the bottom of the 11th to tie the game at 10. The game was called on account of darkness at the end of the 11th.

In 2008, against Milwaukee, after 8 scoreless innings, the Cubs allowed 3 runs in the top of the 9th, but Kosuke Fukudome hit a 3-run homer in the bottom of the inning to tie the game. The Cubs lost, 4-3, in 10 innings.



That 2008 game was the most recent of 14 extra-inning home openers, of which the Cubs have won 6, lost 6 and tied 2.

They are 3-4 in extra-inning season openers on the road, for an overall record of 9-10-2 in first games that went beyond 9 innings.

Only 2 at home lasted more than 11 innings: an 8-5 loss to the Cardinals, in 15, in 1962, and a 6-3 loss to the Brewers, in 12, in 2005.

They won at Atlanta, 10-9, in 13 innings, in 1988. Only 1 of their 6 other extra-inning openers on the road reached the 11th, a 3-2 loss at Los Angeles in 1960.



The Cubs have not allowed a run in 10 home openers, including wins by 10-0 over the Pirates in 2019 and 3-0 over the Brewers in 2020.

They have been shut out by their guests in 10 more openers, most recently by the Cardinals, 3-0, in 2015.

From 1946-49, the Cubs were blanked in 4 straight openers, the last 3 all by 1-0.

In season openers on the road, the Cubs have won 5 shutouts and lost 8. Their 9-0 win over the Angels in 2016 was their first such victory on the road since 1958.



The Cubs have scored 10 or more runs in only 9 of their 147 home openers. They have done so 11 times in season openers on the road. Here is each game in which they scored in double figures:


1880: 20-7 vs. Reds

1884: 15-5 vs. Detroit Wolverines

1924: 12-1 vs. Cardinals

1955: 14-4 vs. Cardinals

1956: 12-2 vs. Reds

1958: 11-6 vs. Cardinals

1966: 10-11 loss vs. Giants

1984: 11-2 vs. Mets

2019: 10-0 vs. Pirates


1892: 14-10 at St. Louis

1899: 15-1 at Louisville

1900: 13-10 at Cincinnati

1927: 10-1 at St. Louis

1936: 12-7 at St. Louis

1954: 13-4 at St. Louis

1988: 10-9 at Atlanta

2003: 15-2 at New York

2005: 16-6 at Arizona

2006: 16-7 at Cincinnati

2019: 12-4 at Texas

Note that the Cubs reached double digits in openers on the road just 4 times in 102 seasons, 1901-2002, then did it 4 more times in 17, 2003-19.

FanPosts are written by readers of Bleed Cubbie Blue, and as such do not reflect the views of SB Nation or Vox Media, nor is the content endorsed by SB Nation, Vox Media or Al Yellon, managing editor of Bleed Cubbie Blue or reviewed prior to posting.