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Thursday reading: Tim Lincecum, Phil Hughes, the Dodgers' money woes and Bob Tufts

The great Tim Lincecum shut down the Mets last night, and Terry Collins expressed his frustration after the game. 

One of the more interesting components in this Mets season, which looks like it's going to be pretty boring, will be the demeanor of Collins. Will more nights like these last two prompt him to be more critical? Will he try to focus more energy on young players like Josh Thole and Ike Davis, trying to ensure that the Mets take something positive out of this season?

Out of curiosity, I looked over Collins' first six big-league seasons, with the question, "Is this (12-18) his worst start after 30 games?"

Yes, it is, although not by much. The 1999 Angels started 13-17, while the 1995 Astros and 1997 Angels started 14-16. The '99 Angels suffered the meltdown that kept Collins out of a big-league manager's office until now. The other two teams, however, turned around their seasons...before faltering in the second half.

--The Mets still haven't thrown a no-hitter in their history, Jim Baumbach reminds us. 

--Pedro Beato went on the disabled list, yet another bad development for the Mets. Seems like Collins got greedy with the Rule 5 pick, riding the hot hand too often.

--The Yankees lost their second straight to Detroit, whose starting pitcher Max Scherzer was part of the three-way trade that made Curtis Granderson a Yankee. I think that right now, even with Austin Jackson's current struggles, all three teams have to feel pretty good about how they made out in that transaction.

--Phil Hughes will be out for a minimum of 6-to-8 weeks. If he actually could get back his arm strength and work his way back to the Yankees on, say, July 1, then he'd feel like a trade acquisition to the Yankees. At this point, however, that's a wildly optimistic take.

--Brian Cashman, in an interview with WFAN's Mike Francesa, professed optimism about Derek Jeter, but also openly discussed the possibility that Jeter might have to be dropped in the lineup at some point. Meanwhile, Jeter left last night's game early with a hip issue, so we'll see if Jeter even plays today's series finale.

--The Associated Press reported that the Dodgers might not make their end-of-May payroll. Bud Selig's strategy is clearly to squeeze the life out of the Frank McCourt ownership until McCourt feels like he has no choice but to sell. It seems like the strategy is going well so far.

--The Jewish Week did a tremendous story on our very own Bob Tufts, featuring a comment from...me, of all people.

 --Let's push back the next contest until next week. 

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