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Jansen perseveres for another scoreless ninth

MLB.com @kengurnick

LOS ANGELES -- Kenley Jansen said he can't wait until he records a clean save, so the media won't be waiting for him by his locker.

He was mostly joking after saving the Dodgers' 4-3 win over the Nationals on Sunday, performing another high-wire act after allowing a pair of no-out singles, balanced by the fact that he worked back-to-back scoreless ninths for the first time this year.

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LOS ANGELES -- Kenley Jansen said he can't wait until he records a clean save, so the media won't be waiting for him by his locker.

He was mostly joking after saving the Dodgers' 4-3 win over the Nationals on Sunday, performing another high-wire act after allowing a pair of no-out singles, balanced by the fact that he worked back-to-back scoreless ninths for the first time this year.

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"It's testing my patience right now, it's annoying," said Jansen, who allowed a soft single to pinch-hitter Matt Adams and a liner by Wilmer Difo, then struck out Andrew Stevenson and Trea Turner before former Dodger Howie Kendrick flied out to center to end the game.

"I wanted to watch that video right away. It was a perfect pitch to Matt Adams right there, but he's strong enough. He opened up because he's looking in and he finds the green right there," Jansen said. "Then I hung a slider to Difo and he put it on the green. I had to calm myself, even though I was angry, and got out of it. It's good to be angry. All this is making me push and push to get where I want to be."

With a 6.23 ERA, Jansen still isn't there after taking a semi-vacation during Spring Training with management's approval, designed to preserve his strength for late in the season after last year's grueling workload. His top velocity was down three miles per hour from Saturday night.

"He's funky because you don't see guys with that kind of stuff for the most part," said Turner. "That's why he's the closer. But I think that last pitch is kind of tough, because when he throws it at you, it looks like it's going to be a ball and then it kind of comes back to the plate. So, just trying to get something over the plate and put it in play, but he got me."

Jansen wrapped up three scoreless innings from the Dodgers' bullpen in relief of starter Alex Wood, who remained winless with the no-decision.

Josh Fields worked around a walk and single with a pair of strikeouts and was credited with his second victory. Tony Cingrani struck out Bryce Harper, the only batter he faced, for his 15th strikeout among the 29 outs he's recorded with no walks. Pedro Baez got two outs around a walk to set it up for Jansen.

Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2001.

Los Angeles Dodgers, Kenley Jansen