When the 2018 National Baseball Hall of Fame class was announced it included four new members, Chipper Jones, Vladimir Guerrero, Jim Thome and Trevor Hoffman.
Hoffman, the long-time San Diego Padres closer who ranks second all-time with 601 saves, marks the sixth closer to be inducted, and the first since Goose Gossage got the call for enshrinement in Cooperstown in 2008.
Los Angeles Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen, who is among the elite relievers in baseball today, understandably was pleased to see another pitcher of his kind reach the Hall of Fame, and is hopeful Mariano Rivera will receive the same honor next year.
“It’s awesome to see closers go into the hall. Trevor Hoffman deserves it, man. To me, it’s just growing up, watching these guys play. It’s awesome,” Jansen said.
“See Trevor Hoffman, Mariano is going to get in next year. I think there is a trend of closers that are going to get in. It just gives a hope to me, that if you keep being successful, one day you can get in.”
Jansen went on to add that his primary focus remains on winning a World Series that escaped the Dodgers last season. “When you just get so caught up trying to win a championship, who knows what can happen,” Jansen said.
“God can give me health and strength, who knows. Just try to win championships here with the Dodgers. I try to stay in the moment, to be honest with you, but hopefully one day you guys can decide.”
Jansen may very well be on his way to having a Hall-of-Fame career though. He’s won the Trevor
Hoffman Award, presented to the best reliever in the National League, in each of the last two seasons.