Veteran reliever and Boston Red Sox closer Kenley Jansen is on the verge of joining an extremely exclusive statistical club in Major League Baseball, as he is just a save away from notching the 400th of his career.
But before he gets to have the chance to pull off that feat, Kenley Jensen made sure to pay his respects to a fellow Curaçaoan, who helped show him the way to the big leagues — former Atlanta Braves slugger Andruw Jones.
“Andruw Jones got to the big leagues and made us believe — paved the way for us. The dream doesn’t stop now,” Kanley Jensen told Ken Rosenthal after getting his career save No. 399 during the Red Sox’s 7-4 road win over the Philadelphia Phillies.
Before inking a two-year pact with the Red Sox last December, Jansen experienced what it’s like to play for the team that Jones represented in the majors for 12 seasons.
“It’s awesome to put this uniform on,” Kenley Jansen said last year, per Mark Bowman of MLB.com, after he signed a one-year deal with the Atlanta Braves. “This is where it all started for me. This is where the hope started. This is where the dream to become a Major Leaguer started. Growing up, I was a big Fred McGriff fan, and then the next thing you know, Andruw Jones gets to the World Series and hits two home runs.”
Jansen has a shot of pocketing his save No. 400 this Sunday when the Red Sox look to sweep the Phillies and extend their win streak to eight games.
Only six players in the history of the MLB have collected at least 400 saves, with Mariano Rivera holding the all-time record with 652.