Perhaps it would be fitting for the Cubs to win 100 games on the 100th anniversary of their 1908 world championship.
After Monday's 12-3 romp over Pittsburgh at PNC Park, they were on pace to finish with that nice round number, a mark the Cubs haven't reached since 1935.
Jim Edmonds ended an 0-for-18 skid with three extra-base hits, Kosuke Fukudome drove in a career-high four runs, Aramis Ramirez hit a three-run homer and the Cubs pounded out 17 hits to hand Ted Lilly his 13th win. Everyone in the lineup except Geovany Soto had at least one hit as the Cubs moved to 31 games over .500 for the first time since the end of the 1984 season.
If they win on Tuesday, the Cubs will be 32 over for the first time since, gulp, 1969.
"I'm not too concerned about historical landmarks," manager Lou Piniella said. "I'm interested in competing every day and being prepared to play every day and taking our chances."
Those with a firm grasp of Cubs history realize that 1935, 1969 and 1984 all ended in disappointing fashion, despite the fact that those teams, like this one, looked invincible for much of the season. The '35 Cubs lost to Detroit 4-2 in the World Series. The '69 edition blew a nine-game division lead to the New York Mets, and the '84 club lost 3-2 to San Diego in the NLCS after winning the first two games.
But this is a new year and a team most Cubs followers haven't seen in quite a while, if ever.
The one sore spot of the second half, Fukudome, appears to be coming around after getting some batting tips from Piniella.
"He's looking like the hitter he was early in the season," Piniella said. "The difference is the shorter stride, a more compact swing, better recognition of balls and strikes. It all happens when that front foot hits, as opposed to really going out. It makes a big difference, and I'll tell you what, he looked very 'hitter-ish' up there."
Is hitter-ish really a word?
"Hitter-ish is a good word," Piniella replied.
While Fukudome said he wasn't able to incorporate Piniella's lessons "100 percent," Piniella said it's simple enough that Fukudome could practice shortening his stride while walking around his hotel room.
"I think that's true, that if you have enough space to swing a baseball bat, you can work on it anywhere," Fukudome said.
The Cubs took a 1-0 lead in the second on Edmonds' triple and Fukudome's sacrifice fly, then added four in the third on Derrek Lee's RBI single and Ramirez's three-run, line-drive homer.
After knocking out starter Jeff Karstens after three innings, they continued to clobber Jason Davis in a five-run fifth, breaking the game open.
Lilly (13-7) lasted seven innings, allowing three runs on seven hits. He contributed to the offense with an RBI single in the fifth.
"It was almost more fun hitting the ball out of the infield, hitting it into the air (on a third-inning flyout)," Lilly said. "That was one of the farthest balls I've ever hit. I got bigger high-fives for that than the single."
Lilly also deserves some high-fives for his pitching. He's 4-1 since the All-Star break and 12-3 since May 3.
Carlos Zambrano takes the mound on Tuesday, as the Cubs attempt to win nine straight series for the first time since 1907, the year they won their first of back-to-back World Series.
The rest of the story has been told a time or two.