Los Angeles

Kenley Jansen Returns to Dodgers After Heart Condition: ‘If it goes, it goes.'

Los Angeles Dodgers All-Star closer Kenley Jansen was activated off the 10-day disabled list on Monday after he was cleared to play baseball again by a cardiologist.

Here he comes to save the day…

Los Angeles Dodgers All-Star closer Kenley Jansen was activated off the 10-day disabled list on Monday after he was cleared to play baseball again by a cardiologist.

Jansen missed the past 11 games with an irregular heartbeat, that was diagnosed on Aug. 7 after he was rushed to the hospital in Denver, Colorado.  

Jansen was flown back to Los Angeles during that four-game series at Coors Field where he met with cardiologist and was placed on blood thinners.

Jansen had a second appointment with the cardiologist on Monday, and was taken off blood thinners before being cleared to pitch again.

"I'm not thinking about my heart; I'm not," Jansen said before Monday's game against the St. Louis Cardinals. "You have no control over your heart, so if it goes, it goes. That's how I think."

He told reporters he will continue to take heart medication, but said he's "down to one pill a day," and will still be required to take daily EKGs through an application on his smart phone and send them to the team's medical staff. 

"I'm in great shape. I do a lot of running during the down times," added Jansen. "So, I'm ready to go. We're what? Two games back with 37 games left? It's go-time now. I don't need to be babied. And I'm sure I'm not going to be babied." 

Jansen added that his cardiologist estimated that he will need another ablation surgery this winter, the same procedure he underwent six years ago after a similar condition in Colorado.

Jansen's return should provide a much-needed boost to the bullpen after the team surrendered late-game leads in seven consecutive games from Aug. 9-15, falling out of first place in the National League West in the process. 

"It's a big lift, especially how this last week went," said Roberts. "It puts guys in their rightful spots in the bullpen and I can use them the way I feel is best. He's the best in the game, so to have him in the back end changes the way they're going to manage and the way I'm going to manage as well."

The Dodgers are also tied with the Colorado Rockies for the second-most blown saves in the Majors with 23.

The closer is 0-3 with 32 saves and a 2.15 ERA in 51 appearances this season. Without Jansen, the bullpen has had a 5.17 ERA and an 8.64 ERA in the ninth inning over that span. Jansen was originally expected to miss a month, so this is much earlier of a return than originally anticipated.

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