It’s closed-door meeting time for the Dodgers

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You know who doesn’t have closed-door meetings? Teams on the right track:

Immediately after the game, Mattingly held a closed-door clubhouse meeting that lasted several minutes so that the players, he said, could discuss “where we’re at and where do we want to go?”

“We’ve got to do better,” Mattingly said. “I continue to believe in these guys,” he said, but Thursday’s game was “a loss that we really can’t afford, and that’s it.”

Attrition is a bitch. Matt Kemp is hurt. Kenley Jansen has heart trouble. Chad Billingsley is gone. The new additions have been welcome, but it hasn’t translated to wins. L.A. is 16-17 since acquiring Hanley Ramirez. They’re 2-4 since getting Beckett, Gonzalez, Punto and the promise of future Carl Crawford.

The saving grace: they have a lot of games left against San Francisco and only a small wild card deficit. But really, you can’t go and get swept by division rivals like the Dbacks when you’re short several hands on deck.

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.