Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers welcomed their closer to Summer Camp on Sunday as Kenley Jansen reported for the first time, revealing the reason for his absence was due to testing positive for coronavirus (COVID-19).
Jansen and his family members all tested positive three weeks ago, although luckily are all recovered and feeling better now.
After learning the dangers of coronavirus first hand, it would have made all of the sense in the world for Jansen to opt-out of the 2020 season to focus on the health of him and his family. He explained why that was never an option though.
“No, I never had that under consideration. I always wanted to play. I love this game, I want to do it for the fans. We’re all going through a tough time right now in this world together and by playing, it’s a good thing for not only the Dodger fans but all baseball fans around the world who have something to watch on TV,” he said.
“So I’m glad to get back and we can move on and do our best just to continue to give to all the fans in the world.”
Opening Day is less than two weeks away, not leaving Jansen much time to get game-ready. He has been throwing since the season was put on hold in March and feels he’ll be prepared for the Dodgers’ first game against the San Francisco Giants on July 23.
“I think we’ll be ready. I’ll throw a lot today, like I said, I’ve been throwing live BP and a bullpen two days ago, playing catch,” Jansen explained. “So I think I’m close so it won’t take too much, probably like three or four live BPs and I’ll be good.”
Jansen testing positive for coronavirus carried added concern considering the heart issues he has dealt with in the past. He took all of the precautions necessary though and is currently healthy and excited to be back on the field with his teammates.
“When it happened I went to a very, very restricted diet. I went into a very no sodium, stay away from dairy, all that stuff. Just everything that can keep my blood pressure down and make sure my heart will be fine,” Jansen said.
“Yes, they said it was kind of like, I was in the moderate risk, but at the same time, for me it’s like how much fluid can I put in my body? That’s why I made sure that I have a lot of fluids, Gatorade, electrolytes, and drinking a lot of hot water with lemon and ginger and stuff like that. That’s what kind of just helped me out.
“As far as being here, I’m just excited. I’m glad to be with my teammates again, I’m glad to be here for another season just trying to win a championship. That’s what our focus is, just how can we win this championship and being with my teammates right now, just being a part of the team. Trying to help the team win and it’s exciting, it’s exciting to be back.”
Jansen Feeling Better After Battle With Coronavirus
Jansen admitted to feeling symptoms for the first few of the days after contracting the virus but credited the team’s training staff for being key in his recovery.
“I’m doing great. I’m doing better now,” Jansen said. “I was talking to the training staff and wanted to keep it private and not be a distraction. I was feeling better on the fourth day I had it, almost three weeks ago now.”
If the Dodgers are going to win the World Series in 2020 then they will need their closer healthy and shutting down games, so it is good to see Jansen back in camp and ready to get on the mound.
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