Chicago Cubs: The all-time tournament

ST. LOUIS, MO - SEPTEMBER 27: Kris Bryant #17 of the Chicago Cubs holds up the 'W' flag after winning the National League Central title against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on September 27, 2017 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
ST. LOUIS, MO - SEPTEMBER 27: Kris Bryant #17 of the Chicago Cubs holds up the 'W' flag after winning the National League Central title against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on September 27, 2017 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images) /
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The iconic ivy at Wrigley Field. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
The iconic ivy at Wrigley Field. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

Chicago Cubs: The All-Time Tournament

1907 Cubs vs. 1935 Cubs

The 1906 Chicago Cubs may have compiled an exceptional regular-season record, but the 1907 club – nearly matched it and added a World Series win to ratify its reputation. That’s good enough to earn the 1907 aggregation the No. 3 seed

With virtually the same personnel cast, that 1907  club won 107 games, lost just 45 (.704), finished 17 games ahead of the runner-up Pirates, then dismissed the American League champion Detroit Tigers in four straight, one game ending in a tie.

As in 1906, it was mostly about pitching. This time the staff’s 1.73 ERA again comfortably led the league, as did its total of 1,054 hits allowed – 140 fewer than the league average.

Orval Overall went 23-7 and Mordecai Brown was 20-6. Among the five most frequently used pitchers – Overall, Brown, Pfeister, Reulbach and Carl Lundgren – the highest ERA was Reulbach’s 1.69.

The No. 6 seed goes to the 1935 Cubs, who staged one of the game’s great comebacks to claim the pennant with 100 victories and a .649 percentage.

Consider that on the morning of Sept. 4, that team stood second, trailing the St. Louis Cardinals by two and one-half games. Larry French beat Philadelphia that afternoon, and the Cubs didn’t lose again for three solid weeks – by which time they had clinched the pennant.

At 21 straight, it’s the longest September winning streak in history by a team that started outside first place and went on to win.

Although easy to overlook, this was a superb cast. Gabby Hartnett, Phil Cavaretta and Stan Hack all played pivotal parts. Hartnett batted .344 with a team-high 91 RBIs. Billy Herman hit .341, Hack was at .311 and outfielder Augie Galan hit .314.

No wonder the team led the National League in batting at .288.

On the mound, Lon Warneke and Bill Lee both won 20 games, and French added 17. At 3.26, the staff ERA was the National League’s best.

In the World Series the Cubs fell to Detroit in six games.

Winner: 1907 Cubs in seven