LOS ANGELES -- Kenley Jansen at some point in the next month or so will break the Dodgers' franchise record for saves, and passed another milestone this last weekend in Colorado.
We can talk all we want about optimal reliever usage, but saves still get you paid, and Jansen is going to cash in quite handsomely this winter, whether it is with the Dodgers are someone else. Because of his performance, age and low mileage on his arm thanks to converting relatively late in his career, Jansen is the ideal reliever in which to invest long term.
Jansen said during the spring he didn't want to talk contract during the season since it would be a distraction. The front office is generally tight-lipped about negotiations as they happen, so if Jansen were to sign an early extension with the Dodgers we might not find out until the contract is all but done.
But back to Jansen on the field for a moment. His save on Saturday against the Rockies was the 150th of his career, and on Sunday he added No. 151. Using the franchise encyclopedias on Baseball-Reference I researched every team in baseball, and Jansen is the 40th pitcher to record 150 saves with one team.
Jansen is now 10 saves shy of tying Eric Gagne for the all-time Dodgers save record, but my question is this:
For what team will Jansen record his 200th career save?
Looking at the list again, there are only 18 pitchers to record 200 saves with one team, and Jansen is 49 away. With nine saves through 20 team games, Jansen is on pace for 73 saves this season, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say he falls short of that.
Even getting to 58 saves this year (nine, plus the 49 saves he needs to get to 200) seems highly unlikely, just because losing streaks are bound to happen, and not every win will be so close. Only Francisco Rodriguez has reached the rarefied air of 58 saves, surpassing that in his 62-save campaign in 2008.
Rodriguez set that record in his walk year heading into free agency, where Jansen is now.