Slumping Bryce Harper “trying to find some mellowness”

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Bryce Harper has come back down to earth following a great start to his career, hitting just .214 with a .594 OPS in his last 40 games and .171 since the All-Star break.

His overall OPS is in danger of dipping below .750 for the first time since May 19 and the 19-year-old told James Wagner of the Washington Post that he’s searching for answers:

I’m all over the place right now. So I’m trying to find some mellowness at the plate and in the box. Just trying to work at it everyday and try to take something good from every at-bat and take something good from every game.

It’s certainly not surprising that a 19-year-old rookie is going through an extended slump after a strong start and even with his overall numbers declining rapidly Harper is still having a historic season for someone his age.

Among all the 19-year-olds in baseball history to log at least 300 plate appearances in a season Harper’s current .758 OPS ranks sixth-best behind Met Ott, Tony Conigliaro, Mickey Mantle, Cesar Cedeno, and Freddie Lindstrom. And directly in front of Edgar Renteria, Ty Cobb, and Ken Griffey Jr.

Angels hire Brad Ausmus as special assistant to the GM

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Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports that the Angels have hired former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus as a special assistant to GM Billy Eppler.

Ausmus, 48, managed the Tigers for four seasons, accruing a 314-332 (.486) record. The Tigers fired him after the 2017 season and hired former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire in his place.

Ausmus will assist with scouting and evaluations of players in the Angels’ system, amateurs, and players in other organizations.