Even after dropping six of their last ten, the Chicago Cubs are still well on pace to notch over 100 wins this season. This is exciting news for the Cubs organization and fans, but the ultimate question still remains: Can they win the World Series?
As shocking as it seems, breaking 100 wins is not a good sign for World Series dreams. I was interested in baseballs winningest teams when ESPN mentioned the Cubs were off to the fastest 30 game start since 1984. I decided to focus on more recent teams under the current playoff format since some of the teams winning over 100 only had to win one series (or none) to make the World Series. The results were shocking. (See table at the end of the article)
Since 1995, 22 teams have posted 100+ win seasons. Of those 22, only six even made the World Series. Going one step further, only two won. Both were the New York Yankees in 1998 and 2009 (Go Yanks!). That’s about a 27.3% success rate for teams winning 100+ games to get to the World Series and a mere 9.1% success rate for winning the World Series.
Even more bizarre, in years when multiple teams posted 100+ win season, none went on to win the World Series. This stat could be an interesting one to keep tabs on come October if the Orioles and Nationals (also currently on pace for right around 100 wins) keep at their pace. If adjusting for the years where multiple teams won 100+ games and counting them as one (since only one could win the World Series), the numbers increase a bit: 42.9% went on to make the World Series and 14.3% went on to win.
All numbers aside though, it’s impossible to deny how good these Cubs are this year. I personally hope they do win well over 100 games and go on to win the World Series, even though it seems the numbers are against them. Not to mention how crazy it would be for them to finally end the 107 year World Series drought.
Teams with 100+ wins in current playoff format and their playoff finish
|2001||Seattle Mariners||AL||116||46||0.71605||Lost ALCS|
|1998||New York Yankees||AL||114||48||0.70370||Won World Series|
|1995||Cleveland Indians||AL||100||44||0.69444||Lost World Series|
|1998||Atlanta Braves||NL||106||56||0.65432||Lost NLCS|
|2004||St. Louis Cardinals||NL||105||57||0.64815||Lost World Series|
|2002||New York Yankees||AL||103||58||0.63975||Lost ALDS|
|2009||New York Yankees||AL||103||59||0.63580||Won World Series|
|1999||Atlanta Braves||NL||103||59||0.63580||Lost World Series|
|2002||Oakland Athletics||AL||103||59||0.63580||Lost ALDS|
|2002||Atlanta Braves||NL||101||59||0.63125||Lost NLDS|
|2011||Philadelphia Phillies||NL||102||60||0.62963||Lost NLDS|
|2001||Oakland Athletics||AL||102||60||0.62963||Lost ALDS|
|1998||Houston Astros||NL||102||60||0.62963||Lost NLDS|
|1997||Atlanta Braves||NL||101||61||0.62346||Lost NLCS|
|2004||New York Yankees||AL||101||61||0.62346||Lost ALCS|
|2003||New York Yankees||AL||101||61||0.62346||Lost World Series|
|2003||Atlanta Braves||NL||101||61||0.62346||Lost NLDS|
|2003||San Francisco Giants||NL||100||61||0.62112||Lost NLDS|
|2005||St. Louis Cardinals||NL||100||62||0.61728||Lost NLCS|
|2015||St. Louis Cardinals||NL||100||62||0.61728||Lost NLDS|
|2008||Los Angeles Angels||AL||100||62||0.61728||Lost ALDS|
|1999||Arizona Diamondbacks||NL||100||62||0.61728||Lost NLDS|