- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 20, 2016

CHICAGO (AP) - Bartolo Colon had a tough time on a hot, muggy day at Wrigley Field.

Anthony Rizzo homered twice off Colon, Kyle Hendricks pitched 6 1/3 scoreless innings and the Chicago Cubs beat New York 6-2 Wednesday to take two of three in a rematch of last year’s NL Championship Series.

With the Mets wearing 1986 replica road uniforms, Colon (8-5) gave up six runs and eight hits in 4 1/3 innings. Right-handed hitting Wilmer Flores hit his fifth home run in eight games, a two-run drive off lefty Travis Wood in the eighth.

Addison Russell hit a two-run double in the first after the usually precise Colon walked a pair of batters.

“There are days I haven’t seen Bartolo throw 15 balls in five innings, let alone in one inning,” Mets manager Terry Collins said. “Certainly uncharacteristic, but you’re going to have blips like that.”

Colon said fatigue or mechanics aren’t explanations for poor performances in two of his last three starts, sandwiched around a win over the Philadelphia.

“You have your highs and your lows in baseball,” the 43-year-old said through a translator.

Besides, the Mets don’t have anyone to take his spot in the rotation.

“He’s going to pitch and start every five days,” Collins said. “Right now if he was 53, he’s going to be out there.”

Rizzo pulled a slider to right for a solo homer in the third, a drive that would have traveled 451 feet had it landed at ground level unimpeded, according to MLB’s Statcast program. Two innings later with a runner on, Rizzo sent a fastball into the right-field bleachers, estimated at 436 feet by Statcast.

Rizzo also hit a two-run homer in Monday’s victory as the Cubs rebounded from a four-game sweep in New York this month. Chicago has won five of its last seven overall.

Hendricks (9-6) gave up seven hits and hasn’t allowed an earned run in his last three appearances. He lowered his ERA to 2.27, third best in the majors.

About 15 hours after loading the bases with no outs in the ninth and failing to score in a 2-1 loss, the Cubs wasted no time in a similar situation.

Javier Baez added an RBI single off Antonio Bastardo in a three-run fifth as the Cubs completed a 4-2 homestand.

New York, resting several starters ahead of a series in Miami, wasted chances.

Juan Lagares hit into an inning-ending double play with runners at first and third base in the second. James Loney was thrown out at the plate by Jason Heyward to end the fourth when the center fielder charged Kelly Johnson’s single and made a perfect one-hop throw to catcher Miguel Montero, who barely had to move his mitt. Michael Conforto hit into an inning-ending double play against Carl Edwards Jr. in the seventh.

AGE OF BARTOLO

Colon is 219 days older than Cubs president Theo Epstein.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Mets: OF Yoenis Cespedes, who returned Monday from a strained right quadriceps, sat out. Manager Terry Collins said Cespedes is “not close to being 100 percent.” . 2B Neil Walker and SS Asdrubal Cabrera also rested.

UP NEXT

Mets: RHP Logan Verrett (3-6) faces Marlins LHP Adam Conley (6-5) on Friday night.

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