Kenley Jansen is not the same Kenley Jansen he was five years ago. He isn’t even the same Kenley we saw in 2017 that posted a 1.32 ERA and 1.31 FIP. He used to be downright spectacular with his cutter sending hitters flailing.
This new Kenley is one that is not exactly pleasant to see, but the most unnerving part of this deterioration is Jansen’s apparent ignorance to his own deterioration. He isn’t the same and he has yet to acknowledge it.
The soon-to-be 32-year-old closer went on MLB Network Radio on Thursday to discuss his struggles and to tell fans they shouldn’t be worried about him because he isn’t worried about himself.
Here is the link to the interview:
Kenley Jansen doesn't want you to worry about him.#LABleedsBlue pic.twitter.com/mXETsMCR9O
— MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM (@MLBNetworkRadio) September 12, 2019
Where Jansen is at Now
While Kenley is not the same, he is staying positive and planning to continue to execute the way he knows how:
“I’m feeling good. You see a lot of soft contact and things not going your way. Things like bad luck…you can’t let those things frustrate you out there. You just got to keep going. The ball is coming out of my hand well. I’m just looking to make adjustments now. You just have to stay positive.”
Jansen holds a 3.79 ERA and 3.68 FIP on the season with a 4-3 record and 28 saves. It’s been an uncharacteristic year for Jansen to say the least.
Jansen Isn’t Worried…and He Says You Shouldn’t Be Either
Kenley Jansen doesn’t realize how much he has declined, but it’s good to see him maintain a great deal of confidence. Confidence plays up just as much as ‘stuff’ does in the playoffs.
“I’m not worried about myself and I don’t want my teammates…anybody to be worried about myself. Because I know I’m going to be just fine.”
Maybe this is the year that Jansen doesn’t blow a game in the World Series. We can only hope.
Just a reminder from Jansen:
Pitching Once a Series
Jansen has been pitching less and while it has not had the intended impact, it saves him for higher leverage innings in the postseason.
“Me and Doc [Dave Roberts], we talked about it. This year is one year that I am consistently not pitching that often. Last month, he started pitching be once per series. If he did that, my innings would be so low and we have a powerful offense…we win big or just lose by one. The save situation doesn’t show up as often. That’s an adjustment that I try to make, too. Staying in your rhythm and trying to stay consistent like other years.”
The Dodgers need Jansen to perform up to what the standards he has set for himself are.
Ready for October
Jansen just wants to be ready for the postseason:
“I totally agree. This is the time right now to find my rhythm and keep myself going so I can be ready for the playoffs.”
Here’s to hoping Jansen will prove us wrong!