Longtime Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda came to the defense of current manager Don Mattingly, who has been under increasing media pressure in Los Angeles with his expensive team being off to a 13-20 start.

Friday's Los Angeles Times featured two stories on Mattingly's job status, with one of them under the headline "Donnie on the Spot."

Mattingly is operating under the final year of his contract. He asked the Dodgers to pick up his 2014 option over the winter, and they declined.

"It bothers me, because Don's not that kind of guy. He wouldn't be talking about his contract. If he did, it would be privately," Lasorda told ESPNLosAngeles.com. "He's done a hell of a job with the team, and the players think the world of him. They're just not putting out. They're not playing up to their capabilities, and consequently, the manager has to suffer the brunt of it.

"[Critics] don't want to get rid of the players. They want to get rid of the manager."

Lasorda, 85, remains with the organization as a special assistant to the chairman and said he speaks with Mattingly frequently. Lasorda, who won two World Series in Los Angeles, retired in 1996 after 20 seasons as Dodgers manager.