Janssen rebounds, notches save with clean inning

Janssen rebounds, notches save with clean inning

BOSTON -- Casey Janssen has something positive to build from after he closed out the Blue Jays' 3-1 victory over the Red Sox on Sunday afternoon with a clean inning.

Janssen struck out the first two batters he faced and then got Will Middlebrooks to fly out and end the game. The outing might seem relatively minor in the grand scheme of things, but it was a big one for Janssen, who has come under fire in recent weeks.

Toronto's veteran reliever at least partially lost his job as closer to rookie Aaron Sanchez. To make matters worse, he also wasn't able to protect a two-run lead during the 10th inning of Friday night's 9-8 loss. On Sunday afternoon, though, he was perfect.

"He's a motivated guy," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said of Janssen. "He's probably as motivated as anybody as you're going to come across. The thing about that job, you're the last man standing. You can play a great game, if you don't close it out, that goes with the territory. He's been really, really, good at it, so it's good to see him bounce back."

Sanchez wasn't available after tossing 27 pitches during Saturday's loss to Boston. That left Janssen as the primary reliever and he looked as good as he has at any point this season. The hope is that will carry over into the club's final 20 games.

Janssen has three saves, two losses and a blown save in his past five appearances. On the season, he has 22 saves and a 4.28 ERA.

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.