It's August 26th and the Cubs are already an 81 win team. They are the first team to win 81 this season - in fact, no other team even has 80 at this point. With 31 games remaining, the Cubs need to go 19-12 in order to win 100.
The Cubs are now guaranteed to finish .500 or higher, calming the many Cub fans who will never forget 1977. One of our readers asked how long it's been since the Cubs reached .500 as early as the 25th of August. The answer, I have learned, is Wednesday, August 21st of 1929. That day, the Cubs won their 76th game. In fact, the Cubs have very rarely ever surpassed the .500 mark for the season in August. Going from 2007 down to 1935, when I gave up and decided to just find the answer, here are the years, dates, records, and teams beaten:
2007: Friday, September 21. 81-73 after beating Pittsburgh
2004: Friday, September 17, 81-64 after beating Cincinnati
2003: Tuesday, September 16, 81-70 after beating the Mets
2001: Friday, September 21, 81-66 after beating Houston
1998: Wednesday, September 9, 81-65 after beating Pittsburgh
1995: Tuesday, September 28, 72-69 after beating Houston"
1993: Monday, September 27, 81-76 after beating Los Angeles
1989: Monday, September 11, 81-63 after beating Montreal
1984: Saturday, September 1st, 81-54 after beating Atlanta
1977: Monday, September 26th, 81-76 after beating Philly
1972: Saturday, September 16th, 77-64 after beating the Mets
1971: Wednesday, September 22nd, 81-74 after beating the Mets
1970: Thursday, September 24th, 81-74 after beating St. Louis
1969: Friday, August 29th, 81-52 after beating Atlanta (the Cubs would be 30 games over .500 on August 30th)
1968: Wednesday, September 25th, 81-78 after beating Los Angeles
1967: Saturday, September 16th, 81-70 after beating Atlanta
1963: Friday, September 27th, 81-79 after beating the Milwaukee Braves
1946: Monday, September 16, 76-64 after beating Brooklyn
1945: Wednesday, August 29, 76-44 after beating Pittsburgh
1939: Thursday, September 14, 76-62 after beating Philly
1938: Wednesday, September 14, 76-60 after beating the Boston Braves
1937: Wednesday, September 8, 76-52 after beating St. Louis
1936: Friday, September 4, 76-55 after beating Pittsburgh
1935: Thursday, August 29, 76-50 after beating the Boston Braves
As far as 81 wins goes, the Cubs won their 81st game on August 26th in 1929, and that's as close to this year's accomplishment as they get, right up until 1907. In 1907, the Cubs won their 81st game on August 22nd, and in 1906 they won their 81st on August 21.
Those appear to be the only two years that the Cubs won 81 games before August 25th of any year in their history. Oh, by the way, they won the World Championship in one of those seasons.