3. Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen is still missing from camp
While the Dodgers continue to put on an optimistic face, closer Kenley Jansen is still missing from summer camp for reasons not specified by the team. With the current health crisis, it’s easy to speculate Jansen’s delay in arriving to camp is related to Covid-19, but nothing has been confirmed.
Dave Roberts confident Jansen will be ready: The manager of the Dodgers believes his closer will be ready for the season.
"“I talked to Kenley [on Thursday], he is in really good spirits, feeling good, expect to see him soon, he’s been moving around, so I think he’ll be ready.”"
Roberts admitted that Opening Day is quickly approaching (it is less than two weeks away), but still thinks Jansen has time to get into game shape.
"“Obviously every day off the calendar we don’t see them certainly makes it a little bit more difficult, but I’m still confident we have enough time.”"
Bullpen depth: With all the attention on the Dodger closer, let’s not overlook that set-up man Pedro Baez is also missing from camp for undisclosed reasons. That means it’s possible the team will start the season without their two most reliable bullpen arms during a time when the bullpen will be counted on more than ever as starters stretch out their arms.
Who would be the closer if Jansen isn’t ready: potential closing optionsI wrote an in-depth piece yesterday about to fill the gap if Jansen is not ready on Day 1. As a preview, I would expect the team to look to veteran options Blake Treinen or Joe Kelly to take on the duties, but don’t be surprised if they try out a more exciting option in a young prospect arm, such as Dustin May (wouldn’t that be fun?)
4. Dodgers intra-squad game
The Dodgers played another intra-squad game at Dodger Stadium on Thursday.
- The Dodgers won 4-1 (technically, this means the Dodgers also lost)
- Corey Seager keeps hitting. After going 2-2 on Wednesday, the Dodger shortstop went 3-3 last night with two doubles.
- Justin Turner looked like he could have been upset with the new batter’s eye after striking out in one at-bat.
With MLB players following social distancing guidelines, after Will Smith connected on a home run, you can see him celebrating with “air” high fives.
That does it for today. Please check back tomorrow for the next Dodgers Briefing!