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Jansen empathizes with ailing Reds skipper Baker

Jansen empathizes with ailing Reds skipper Baker

Jansen empathizes with ailing Reds skipper Baker
CINCINNATI -- Of everybody that feels for ailing Reds manager Dusty Baker, nobody in the game appreciates the gravity of an irregular heartbeat more than Dodgers reliever Kenley Jansen.

Jansen, who threw a perfect inning Friday night to help keep the Reds from clinching the National League Central, faces offseason surgery to deal with his arrhythmia, a condition apparently similar to what hospitalized the 63-year-old Baker in Chicago this week.

"I feel bad for Dusty," said the 24-year-old Jansen, who pitched for only the second time after missing three weeks with his latest episode. "They say that it's dangerous for me and I'm young. I'll be OK. He's not so young. I hope he gets well soon."

It will take surgery for Jansen. He expects to require a catheter ablation, in which doctors will make an incision in his groin and, with a flexible tube, seek out and cauterize abnormal tissue that triggers his atrial fibrillation. He's said he's looking at a three-month rehab.

As serious as that sounds, Jansen said health is not on his mind when he's on the mound.

"I don't think about the heart stuff when I'm out there," he said. "If it goes out of whack, I'm not going to worry about it. I can't in a critical situation like this. I'm just taking care of my eating and I'll be fine."

Jansen said he was thrilled to be part of the postseason race again.

"I'm finally able to take care of business," he said.

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