Thursday, July 7, 2016

Kenley Jansen is Finally Proving His Worth

Last year, on this very blog, I compiled a list of who I thought were the 10 best pitchers in the game, devised of people that had been in the league for a while and were still kicking it, or people who were momentarily leading in saves. However, after I made the post I got some heat for not including someone on the list. That someone was Kenley Jansen.

Why I left him off the list, I'm guessing, had to do with his numbers up to July 2015. He'd posted a nice amount of saves per season, but never really set the league on fire, at least statistically.

Of course...NOW I can see why people wanted him on that list. This season, the guy's been pretty phenomenal in the ninth, breaking the record for most saves at Dodger Stadium, and going very high into the league standings for saves. This guy can definitely save games, and he can definitely work a mound, a bit more than I would have thought last year.

Kenley Jansen has EARNED himself an All Star nod, as he's definitely become one of the best overall closers in the NL since the departure of Aroldis Chapman (though he could be back). The Dodgers have gained a ton of steam in the NL this year, even if the Giants have a hold on the division, and Jansen has been a huge part of that, perhaps being one of the few aspects of the pitching staff that isn't sinking currently.

Again, consistency like this is pretty admirable, especially in a year when one of the top up-and-coming closers, Trevor Rosenthal, was demoted halfway through the year, so it's good to see he's still mowing 'em down. I'd love to see him become even more of a fixture, and keep things going for longer.

Coming Tomorrow- With his record, ERA, and his team's momentum, it's kind of shocking that he didn't make the All Star team.


  1. Finally? Dude Kenley has been elite for years. Seriously. What numbers were you looking at?....

    1. He's only had one season of less than 4 blown saves, and only two seasons with more than 30 saves. He's a high strikeout artist that's only really come into vogue over the last season or so. He's been stuck behind Aroldis Chapman for so many years, not necessarily in terms of numbers, but in terms of NL esteem- people talked more about Chapman for his raw ability than Jansen, because both pitchers fall into a ton of the same categories and Chapman's been a little showier (not that I'm pleased with this, as this is just what I've seen).
      Bottom line- Kenley Jansen's always been pretty nice, but this is the first season he's transcended a role as the Dodgers' closer and become a more important figure in baseball.

    2. Importance in the baseball world is perception. Just because he may not get national recognition doesn't mean he's mediocre.


      1.96 FIP
      13.78 K/9
      2.71 BB/9 (under 1.38 two straight years)
      Best cutter in baseball

      Since you seem to love Chapman so much Kenley only has a better career WAR, FIP, has walked less guys and given up less homers per nine in more innings pitched DESPITE missing time multiple times with a serious heart ailment.