June 23, 2024

Don’t expect Kenley Jansen to finish the 2024 season with the Boston Red Sox.

According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, the Red Sox “plan to trade All-Star veteran closer Jansen by the trade deadline. He’s earning $16 million this year, and the Red Sox have no interest in bringing him back.”

Jansen, 36, will be a free agent after the season. Over parts of two seasons in Boston, he’s recorded 38 saves in 43 opportunities, with a 4-7 record, a 3.52 ERA, a 1.28 WHIP, and 73 strikeouts in 68 appearances.

To provide some context, Jansen went 5-2 in his single season with the Atlanta Braves in 2022, saving 41 games in 48 opportunities with a 3.38 ERA, a 1.04 WHIP, and 85 strikeouts across 65 total appearances, earning his fourth All-Star Game nod.

In Boston, Jansen hasn’t quite matched the elite level he showed with the Los Angeles Dodgers or in his one season with the Braves. However, he hasn’t been a liability either.

 

Despite this, trade rumors have been persistent since the winter, and Jansen has tried to ignore the speculation.

“Just keep my mind off it. At the end of the day, I love this game, and this is where I’m at right now. I’m always going to invest my time wherever I am,” Jansen told reporters in February when asked about handling the trade rumors. “To me, just focus on the fact that I’m here, I signed here for two years, and I’m going to try to do everything to improve this ballclub.”

It wouldn’t be surprising if a contending team in need of bullpen help eventually reached out to the Red Sox. Currently, the team is 27-26, and if Boston goes on a run between now and late July, it might reconsider trading Jansen.

However, if the Red Sox fall further behind the New York Yankees (37-18) and Baltimore Orioles (33-18) in the AL East and lag in the Wild Card race, Jansen will likely be pitching elsewhere down the stretch.

 

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