Orioles name Jason Hammel as Opening Day starter

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Jason Hammel had the most effective season of his career after being traded to Baltimore, posting a 3.43 ERA in 20 starts, and the Orioles announced that he’ll get the Opening Day start this season.

Hammel missed nearly the entire second half with a knee injury, but he’s healthy now and was a pretty easy choice for the Game 1 assignment.

Last year’s Opening Day starter was Jake Arrieta, who ended up going 3-9 with a 6.20 ERA. So if nothing else Hammel doesn’t exactly have big shoes to fill.

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.