Amid LA's struggles, Mattingly seeks out advice

Amid LA's struggles, Mattingly seeks out advice

LOS ANGELES -- Dodgers manager Don Mattingly is running out of answers.

When asked why his team has struggled so much lately before Thursday's game against the reeling Cardinals, the skipper repeated the phrase "I don't know" over and over again.

"If you're asking me to explain it, I'm having trouble with that one myself trying to put it in words or reasons why," he said. "You can come up with all kinds of theories why, maybe times are hard, they haven't been together enough, whatever that is, we're pressing."

Trying to right the ship, the second-year manager has turned to some past winners seeking advice. He said he has turned to Joe Torre, team president Stan Kasten and a number of coaches on his staff to pick their brains.

Most recently, he sought out Dodgers co-owner Magic Johnson, a five-time NBA champion, for some pointers. Mattingly said he ran Wendesday's pregame phantom infield drill where the team practiced without a baseball by the former Lakers great and found out legendary coach Pat Riley used to cancel shootaround and think of fun ways to break up the routine during losing streaks.

"You want to get people that have been through it and not be a hard head and think you know everything," said Mattingly, who added he feels lucky the team entered Thursday only one game back of the second Wild Card spot. "I've been around the game a little bit and been through a lot of different things and heard guys talk. I just want to get counsel."

Mattingly attributed some of the recent struggles to chemistry, which was altered when the team brought in so many new players over the past couple of months. He said the team needs to relax, get back to basics and then "put the hard hat on."

Unsure of why the team can't buy a run right now, he was confident in what will fix things.

The answer?

"I think winning solves anything," he said.