Casey Janssen throws “impressive” bullpen session, nearing return from abdominal injury

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Blue Jays closer Casey Janssen is almost fully recovered from his late-spring left abdominal strain.

John Lott of Canada’s National Post reports that the right-hander threw a bullpen session on Wednesday afternoon, which manager John Gibbons called “impressive.” Janssen will throw another bullpen session in the next couple of days and should then be cleared for a minor league rehab assignment.

Sergio Santos will continue to close for now.

Janssen registered an outstanding 2.56 ERA, 0.987 WHIP, and 50/13 K/BB ratio across 52 2/3 innings last season for the Blue Jays, saving 34 games in 36 opportunities.

Joe Kelly’s suspension reduced to 5 games on appeal

Joe Kelly suspended eight
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LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles Dodgers reliever Joe Kelly had his suspension for throwing pitches near the heads of Houston hitters reduced to five games on appeal.

Kelly was originally penalized eight games by Major League Baseball on July 29, a day after throwing a 96 mph fastball near the head of Houston’s Alex Bregman and two curveballs that brushed back Carlos Correa.

The Dodgers on Wednesday confirmed the reduced penalty.

Kelly went on the 10-day injured list retroactive to last Sunday with right shoulder inflammation. He will serve his suspension when he returns.

After striking out Corea, Kelly curled his lip into a pouting expression and exchanged words with the shortstop.

Benches cleared after Kelly’s actions during the sixth inning of Los Angeles’ 5-2 win at Houston in the teams’ first meeting since it was revealed the Astros stole signs en route to a 2017 World Series title over the Dodgers.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts served his one-game suspension the same day the penalty was handed down. Astros manager Dusty Baker was fined an undisclosed amount.

Kelly denied that he purposely threw at the Astros. He has previously been suspended in his career for throwing at a batter.

The penalties were imposed by former pitcher Chris Young, MLB’s senior vice president of baseball operations, who issued his first ruling since taking over the job from Joe Torre.