Los Angeles Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen, who is on the disabled list with an irregular heartbeat, returned to the team clubhouse Monday and said he’ll throw a bullpen session this week and seemed confident he would pitch again this season.
Jansen also said he was told there’s a good chance he will need another heart surgery in the offseason, similar to the surgery he had in 2012.
He was hospitalized in Denver on Thursday after experiencing an irregular heartbeat. He was sent back to Los Angeles for tests, and ESPN’s Buster Olney reported that he was expected to miss about a month.
Jansen dealt with issues related to an irregular heartbeat in 2011 and 2012, and the three-time All-Star recognized something wasn’t right Thursday as Los Angeles prepared for the opener of a four-game series at Colorado. He was sent back to L.A. and has been examined by a number of cardiologists, including some who have treated him in the past.
“It is a pre-existing condition,” Andrew Friedman, the Dodgers’ president of baseball operations, said Saturday. “The fact that he has experienced it before, we were able to catch it much earlier than he did in 2011 and 2012, which I think is real positive. He was able to catch it on the front end.”
In 2012, doctors performed a catheter ablation on Jansen. They identified the abnormal tissue in the left atrium of Jansen’s heart that was causing the irregular heartbeat and cauterized it to stop it from generating abnormal electrical signals. He had not had any significant problems since then.
Jansen is scheduled for a follow-up appointment with doctors on Aug. 20 and won’t pitch before then. Friedman said he might resume some limited baseball activities next week to try to keep his arm in shape.