David Wright spent Saturday night in the hospital after getting beaned in the head by a 94-mph Matt Cain fastball, but was released Sunday after being diagnosed with post-concussion symptoms. Corey Koskie’s career was ruined by the aftereffects of a concussion and the Mets saw how much it hurt Ryan Church last year, so certainly Wright isn’t out of the woods yet.
However, simply avoiding a major facial injury is great news given the pitch’s speed and location. With the Mets out of contention there was no real need to see if Wright could get back on the field in a hurry, so the team smartly placed him on the disabled list Sunday afternoon. “David wanted to give it a chance to try to go out there and play, but we decided to take it away,” general manager Omar Minaya said.
Wright’s batting average (.324), on-base percentage (.414), and steal total (24) are all the second-best marks of his career, but his power has been absent all season with just eight homers in 497 plate appearances. He’ll no doubt try to come back in two weeks, but certainly could be shut down for the season. Fernando Tatis will man third base in the meantime and should have solid value in NL-only leagues.
While the Mets’ disabled list could probably beat their active roster at this point, here are some other notes from around baseball …
* Saturday was apparently a bad time to be a baseball player’s noggin, because in addition to Wright’s beaning Hiroki Kuroda took a line drive off his forehead and also spent the night in a hospital. Kuroda didn’t lose consciousness and CAT scans were negative, so he was released Sunday and has been cleared to fly with the Dodgers. He’ll be tested further before the team decides if he needs a disabled list stint.
* The deadline to sign draft picks is midnight Monday and 11 of the first 20 picks are unsigned, including No. 1 overall selection Stephen Strasburg. Nationals president Stan Kasten said Saturday that Strasburg has been offered a record-setting contract, but various reports suggest that the current proposal won’t get him signed and some speculation has agent Scott Boras seeking upwards of $40 million.
AL Quick Hits: After sitting out over a month, Torii Hunter (groin) rejoined the lineup with two hits Sunday … Impending free agent Erik Bedard said Saturday that he’d like to re-sign with the Mariners following shoulder surgery … Nick Blackburn had another terrible outing Sunday, serving up three homers before being chased in the third inning … Junichi Tazawa failed to record a strikeout Sunday and coughed up four runs on 10 hits in five innings … Jim Thome will miss at least one game after aggravating his left foot injury Sunday … Juan Rivera went 3-for-8 with four RBIs and three runs Sunday as his three-run homer capped the Angels’ amazing nine-run 13th inning … Mark Ellis delivered a walk-off homer Sunday against Chicago closer Bobby Jenks … Delmon Young is finally showing signs of life, homering Sunday for the third time in six games.
NL Quick Hits: Johnny Cueto is likely to have his next start skipped after going 0-6 with a 10.63 ERA in his last eight outings … Carlos Zambrano (back) is expected to make a rehab start Thursday at Single-A … Jonny Gomes went deep again Sunday and now ranks second to Albert Pujols in at-bats per homer … Roy Oswalt struggled Sunday for the second straight start, giving up five runs over six innings as his ERA climbed above 4.00 … Rich Harden will be skipped in the rotation for now because he warmed up before Sunday’s rainout … Nick Johnson left Sunday’s game with a hamstring injury, which is amazingly his first real health issue of the year … Randy Wolf had 10 strikeouts in 7.2 innings of three-run ball Sunday and also went 3-for-4 with a homer, a double, and three RBIs at the plate … After missing his last start with a toe injury, Aaron Cook returned by allowing seven runs Sunday … Colby Rasmus delivered a walk-off homer Sunday against Padres closer Heath Bell.
The 2016-18 All-Star Games are spoken for, but the Cubs could play host not long thereafter according to commissioner Rob Manfred, Bruce Levine of CBS Chicago reports.
The Padres are hosting at Petco Park this year, the Marlins will host at Marlins Park next season, and the Nationals will host in 2018 at Nationals Park. That will make four consecutive National League hosts and five if the Cubs get it in 2019. In the past, the National and American Leagues have alternated hosting privileges. That is sort of important now since the league that wins the All-Star Game gets home field advantage in the World Series.
The Cubs last hosted the All-Star Game in 1990 and have hosted a total of three times (1962 and 1947 being the other years) since its inception in 1933.
Wrigley Field has been undergoing renovations which are expected to be completed by the 2019 season. Manfred said that the Cubs hosting the All-Star Game “will provide the Cubs and Ricketts family a chance to showcase the unbelievable renovation they are in the midst of doing for Wrigley field.”
Update: Here’s a table showing the last time each team hosted the All-Star Game.
||Olympic Stadium (Expos)
||Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum
||Jack Murphy Stadium
||Oriole Park at Camden Yards
||The Ballpark in Arlington
||U.S. Cellular Field
||Minute Maid Park
||Angels Stadium of Anaheim
||Great American Ball Park
Expect Kyle Hendricks and Adam Warren to battle it out for the fifth spot in the Cubs’ starting rotation this spring, writes Gordon Wittenmyer for the Chicago Sun-Times. Clayton Richard could serve as a fallback option as well.
Hendricks, 26, pitched well in his first full season in 2015. He finished with a 3.95 ERA and a 167/43 K/BB ratio over 180 innings. That was a solid follow-up to his rookie campaign in 2014, when he posted a 2.46 ERA over 13 starts.
The Cubs acquired Warren, 28, from the Yankees in the Starlin Castro trade. He contributed both out of the rotation and the bullpen in the Bronx this past season, pitching 131 1/3 innings with a 3.29 ERA and a 104/39 K/BB ratio.
One through four, the Cubs’ rotation is solid with defending National League Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta, Jon Lester, John Lackey, and Jason Hammel.
Mets third baseman David Wright missed four months of the 2015 season due to spinal stenosis. In other words, Wright dealt with a narrowing of his spinal column. Going forward, the Mets plan to be cautious with Wright so as not to overuse him.
As ESPN’s Adam Rubin reports, Mets GM Sandy Alderson plans to have the 33-year-old Wright play in no more than 130 games. Alderson said, “We’re gonna make sure that he’s not overworked. So it’s important for us to find somebody who can play 30 games or so at third base when he’s not in there. But I think we have to be realistic, and not expect that he’s gonna be an absolute everyday [player] out there playing 150 or 155 games. That’s not gonna happen.”
Wilmer Flores played 26 games at third base in his rookie season in 2013, so he could back up Wright as needed. But Alderson mentioned that because Wright would mostly sit against right-handed pitchers, the switch-hitting Neil Walker or Asdrubal Cabrera could get the call at the hot corner.
When he was on the field last season, Wright hit a productive .289/.379/.434 with five home runs and 17 RBI in 174 plate appearances.
The Marlins would like to add “another pitcher or two” before pitchers and catchers report to Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, Florida, MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro writes. Among starting pitchers available, Kyle Lohse, Aaron Harang, and Alfredo Simon are candidates for the Marlins, but they may hold out for the possibility of inking a major league contract. Tim Lincecum and Cliff Lee are other potential candidates, per Frisaro.
This offseason, the Marlins signed Wei-Yin Chen to a five-year, $80 million deal and Edwin Jackson for the major league minimum. The back of the rotation, though, is still a question mark as Jarred Cosart, Adam Conley, and Justin Nicolino will compete with Jackson for two spots. David Phelps is dealing with an elbow injury and may or not be ready by Opening Day, but he could function in a swingman capacity as well.