Monday, August 8, 2022

Braves closer Kenley Jansen placed on injured list due to irregular heartbeat

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USATSI

The Atlanta Braves announced on Tuesday that they had placed closer Kenley Jansen on the injured list with an irregular heartbeat. In a corresponding move, the Braves promoted right-hander Jesús Cruz to the big-league squad.

Jansen, 34 years old, is in his first season with the Braves after signing with them as a free agent over the winter. In 32 appearances to date, he’s compiled a 3.58 ERA (123 ERA+) and a 5.88 strikeout-to-walk ratio along with 20 saves in 24 opportunities. Jansen had previously spent his entire career with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Jansen underwent an ablation procedure in November 2018 after he experienced an atrial fibrillation episode during a road trip in Denver. Back in 2012, he also underwent a catheter ablation to prevent the generation of “abnormal electrical signals,” according to MLB.com.

“I’ve learned a lot about the heart,” Jansen has since said in an effort to promote heart health and awareness. “I just have to be on top of my game and make sure my blood pressure stays low, because if my blood pressure gets really high or spikes that could cause another episode. High blood pressure makes the heart work harder. We should take care of our bodies, especially our hearts. You have only one.” 

Cruz, 27 years old, has made six appearances already this season as a member of the Braves. In those games, he’s accumulated five strikeouts and has allowed one run on four hits and two walks and a hit batsmen. Cruz had previously appeared in just one big-league game prior to this season, with that coming as a member of the St. Louis Cardinals during the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign.

The Braves will begin a three-game series against the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday. Should a save situation arise, the Braves would likely call upon either Will Smith, A.J. Minter, or Colin McHugh.

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