New York Mets manager Collins congratulates Wright on hitting a walk off single to beat the Philadelphia Phillies in their MLB National League baseball game at Citi Field in New York

And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

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Mets 6, Phillies 5: The R.A. Dickey vs. Cole Hamels matchup didn’t pan out as some expected, but David Wright took care of things, going 3 for 5 with four RBI including the game winner.

Cardinals 6, Rockies 2: Lance Lynn had been skidding but the Rockies cured his ills. The Rockies cure everyone’s ills. Six shutout innings for Lynn and his 11th win.

Braves 7, Cubs 3: Brian McCann and Jason Heyward homer, helping the Braves salvage the split. I think if they dropped this one I would have launched my annual “teams I’d root for if I didn’t root for the Braves” post, but they’ve got a reprieve.

Pirates 2, Astros 0: You can say the Pirates recent hot streak is courtesy of playing four games against the Rockies. Or you can say that they’re a team winning the games they’re supposed to win. Doesn’t matter: they’re still in first place. Jeff Karstens threw eight shutout innings fanning eight.

Royals 9, Blue Jays 6: Eric Hosmer had three RBI and Luke Hochevar pitched well but had to leave early due to sprained ankle he sustained while covering first base. That’s it. Tomorrow, pitcher fielding practice for everyone. Oh, wait, no. None of that. That’s how Hochevar got hurt in the first place.

Dodgers 4, Diamondbacks 1: Is it bad that I had never heard of Nate Eovaldi before I read this box score? Hell, I can’t know everything. He won for the Dodgers, though, giving up one run in six innings.

Indians 3, Rays 1: Tampa Bay continues to slide. They’ve lost eight of ten. The Indians have won six of eight. And yes, these are bogus uneven data sets. Do what I wanna do.

Nationals 6, Giants 5: The Nats win on a walkoff … um, botched double play. Adam LaRoche should have been out and the game should have headed to extras when he hit a bases loaded one out grounder to short in the ninth. But Brandon Crawford threw low to first, LaRoche was safe, the run scored and the Nats had a sweep of the Giants.

Marlins 4, Brewers 0: Mark Buehrle threw seven and two-thirds shutout innings and Carlos Lee went 2 for 4 in his Miami debut.

White Sox 2, Rangers 1: Kevin Youkilis hit the go-ahead homer in the sixth. That trade is working out so far.

Tigers 7, Twins 3: A three-run homer in the eighth inning by Prince Fielder broke a tie that probably shouldn’t have been tie, except for the fact that the Twins couldn’t score despite having a boatload of base runners. Or, as my son calls it, a buttload. Either way, really.

Padres 2, Reds 1: Six straight wins for San Diego, and eight of 11, this one via a Evereth Cabrera bases loaded single in the bottom of the ninth. The game featured a matchup of pitchers in that big offseason trade: Mat Latos vs. Edinson Volquez. Both of them pitched fantastically.

Angels 9, Orioles 7: Garrett Richards and Jake Arrieta were each pretty dreadful and each were optioned back to Triple-A after the game. You don’t see that every day.

Jose Bautista had a courtside view of Saturday night’s epic NBA Slam Dunk Contest

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Zach LaVine of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Aaron Gordon of the Orlando Magic put on a tremendous show in Saturday night’s NBA Slam Dunk Contest up in Toronto, Canada. The stars were out to see it at the Air Canada Centre, and Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista had one of the very best views in the house. Check out this video he posted to Instagram of LaVine’s final dunk, a between-the-legs jam from just inside the free throw line …

Its a wrap!!! #BackToBack #SlamDunk #Champion @zachlavine8 🙌🏽🙌🏽🙌🏽🙌🏽

A video posted by Jose Bautista (@joeybats19) on

That is Toronto’s very own Drake going wild in the pink jacket. Gordon probably had the best individual dunk of the night, though, if we’re being really real …

Back to your regularly scheduled baseball programming. Pitchers and catchers report Friday.

Cubs expected to host an All-Star Game in the near future

A general view of Wrigley Field and the newly renovated bleachers during the second inning of a baseball game between the the Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati Reds Thursday, June 11, 2015,  in Chicago. Chicago won 6-3. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)
AP Photo/Paul Beaty
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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.

Team Park Last Hosted Yrs Since Notes
Dodgers Dodger Stadum 1980 35
Nationals Olympic Stadium (Expos) 1982 33 2018 host
Athletics Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum 1987 28
Cubs Wrigley Field 1990 25
Blue Jays SkyDome 1991 24
Padres Jack Murphy Stadium 1992 23 2016 host
Orioles Oriole Park at Camden Yards 1993 22
Rangers The Ballpark in Arlington 1995 20
Phillies Veterans Stadium 1996 19
Indians Jacobs Field 1997 18
Rockies Coors Field 1998 17
Red Sox Fenway Park 1999 16
Braves Turner Field 2000 15
Mariners Safeco Field 2001 14
Brewers Miller Park 2002 13
White Sox U.S. Cellular Field 2003 12
Astros Minute Maid Park 2004 11
Tigers Comerica Park 2005 10
Pirates PNC Park 2006 9
Giants AT&T Park 2007 8
Yankees Yankee Stadium 2008 7
Cardinals Busch Stadium 2009 6
Angels Angels Stadium of Anaheim 2010 5
D’Backs Chase Field 2011 4
Royals Kauffman Stadium 2012 3
Mets Citi Field 2013 2
Twins Target Field 2014 1
Reds Great American Ball Park 2015 0
Marlins Never Hosted 2017 host
Rays Never Hosted

Kyle Hendricks and Adam Warren will compete for No. 5 spot in Cubs’ rotation

Chicago Cubs pitcher Kyle Hendricks throws during the first inning of Game 3 of the National League baseball championship series against the New York Mets Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, in Chicago. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
AP Photo/David J. Phillip
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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 GM Sandy Alderson plans to limit David Wright to 130 or fewer games

David Wright
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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.