MLB Rumors: Kenley Jansen Expected To Sign With Marlins Or Nationals
David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

When Aroldis Chapman, Kenley Jansen and Mark Melancon reached free agency the teams most prominently connected to the three closers were the Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees, San Francisco Giants and Washington Nationals.

Supply and demanded suggested at least one of the teams would be left in the cold. Melancon was first to sign, receiving $62 million over four years from the Giants. Then Chapman agreed to a five-year, $86 million deal with the Yankees.

A late push from the Miami Marlins left them in the mix, along with the Dodgers, for Jansen. While it appeared as though the right-handed closer would select between the two clubs, the Nationals were said to have again gotten involved.

Now, according to ESPN’s Jim Bowden, Jansen is likely to sign with the Nationals:

Most people now think that Kenley Jansen will land with the Washington Nationals, with the Miami Marlins as his fallback.

Although Bowden notes that the Nationals are the frontrunners for Jansen, it was the Marlins who reportedly submitted a five-year contract worth $80-plus million. On top of the lucrative offer, Miami provides some familiarity in the former of manager Don Mattingly.

What’s more, former Dodgers coaches Lorenzo Bundy and Tim Wallach are part of the Marlins coaching staff, and the club recently signed A.J. Ellis to a one-year contract.

The 29-year-old Jansen is coming off his first All-Star season, in which he also received the Trevor Hoffman Award — presented to the top relief pitcher in the National League. He finished the season with 47 saves, a 1.83 ERA and 0.67 WHIP.

Jansen, who holds the Dodgers record for most saves all-time, openly stated throughout the season that he would seek the best offer he could find on the open market. He reportedly countered the Dodgers’ offer of $55 million over four years with eight years and $150 million.

Last month the Nationals were reported as being “committed” to signing one of the elite closers this winter, but their focus initially went to pursuing trades for Andrew McCutchen and Chris Sale.

As for the Dodgers, finding a closer via trade would appear to be their best option in replacing Jansen, should he not re-sign.