Dodgers: 3 options to keep the closer spot warm if Kenley Jansen isn’t ready
Dodgers who could fill in for Kenley Jansen at closer: Blake Treinen
If manager Dave Roberts is looking for experience to take on the closing duties in the absence of Kenley Jansen, he has an option in newly-signed reliever Blake Treinen.
The 32-year-old signed a one-year, $10 million deal with the Dodgers in the offseason and both sides are hoping he can still shutdown opposing lineups as he did in Oakland in 2018 when he recorded 38 saves.
After one of the strongest relief seasons in baseball, the right-hander came back down to earth last year, seeing his ERA ballon to nearly five runs (4.91). After walking only 2.4 batters per nine innings in 2018, his walk rate more than doubled in 2019 to 5.68 BB/9.
Even if Treinen doesn’t return to his spectacular form from two seasons ago, the Dodgers would be happy to see him regress to the mean, as he was an adequate bullpen arm for the Nationals from 2014-2016 when his ERA never reached above four runs.
The veteran is hoping some “subtle tweaks” in his delivery will lead to a bounce-back season.
"“It’s nothing crazy,” Treinen told the OC Register in March. “There’s two steps. Some of its mechanical. Some of its usage. That’s about the gist of it I’ll lay out there.”"
If a few mechanical adjustments prove effective, Treinen might be the best option to fill in for Jansen if the long-time Dodger closer isn’t ready to start the season.