Despite not having closer Kenley Jansen to begin the season, the Los Angeles Dodgers have raced out to a 9-3 record complete with back-to-back three-game series sweeps with Sunday’s win over the Colorado Rockies.
Prior to Saturday’s game, Jansen took the next step in his recovery from left foot surgery by throwing his first bullpen session since undergoing the procedure. Dodgers manager Don Mattingly didn’t offer an update on the timetable for Jansen’s return, but said there was noticeable progress.
“Just another step along the way,” Mattingly said. “He’s feeling really good. I think this was the first time he’s really getting off the mound to be able to throw. We’ll see how he comes out of that tomorrow [Sunday] and hopefully his progression just keeps going. We haven’t had any setbacks with him so it’s been pretty positive for Kenley up to this point.”
Echoing the words from his manager, Jansen was enthused by his bullpen session and had a positive assessment of his arm and body, via Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times:
“Really good day for me today,” Jansen said. “Body’s in shape, arm’s in shape.”
While Jansen likely is still multiple weeks away from making a return, him successfully throwing off the mound is key. That being said, other Dodgers relievers have answered the bell through the first two weeks of the season.
Joel Peralta leads the team with three saves and strong contributions from Pedro Baez, Yimi Garcia and others, have helped lay to rest early concern for the group. Collectively, the bullpen allowed just one run and totaled 28 strikeouts in 20.1 innings during the Dodgers’ six-game homestand that concluded Sunday.
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