Los Angeles Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen won the 2016 Trevor Hoffman National League Reliever of the Year Award. He was presented the hardware prior to Game 4 of the World Series between the Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians.
Baltimore Orioles’ Zach Britton was named the Mariano Rivera American League reliever of the year. The awards, based on regular-season performance, is voted on by a panel of eight relievers: Dennis Eckersley, Rollie Fingers, John Franco, Hoffman, Mariano Rivera, Lee Smith, Bruce Sutter and Billy Wagner. Votes are cast on a weighted point system (one, three, five).
Jansen this season converted 47 saves with a 1.83 ERA and 0.67 WHIP. He finished tied for second in the Majors in saves, though led qualified NL closers in WHIP and strikeouts (104).
The 29-year-old broke the Dodgers’ franchise record for most career saves, surpassing Eric Gagne. Jansen earned his first All-Star Game honors, and this week was named to Sporting News’ NL All-Star team.
After a strong 2016 campaign, Jansen more than answered the bell for the Dodgers throughout the postseason, volunteering to pitch multiple innings whenever necessary. In Game 5 of the NL Division Series, he entered in the seventh inning and threw a career-high 51 pitches over 2.1 scoreless innings.
In 11.2 innings over seven playoff appearances, Jansen allowed four runs and had 19 strikeouts. He tossed a career-high three perfect innings in Game 6 of the NL Championship Series.
Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said re-signing Jansen will be a priority this offseason. That figures to be easier said than done, as Jansen shouldn’t have any shortage of suitors.