ATLANTA — Kenley Jansen became the seventh player in major league history to earn 400 saves, pinch-hitter Raimel Tapia hit a go-ahead RBI double in the seventh inning, and the Boston Red Sox beat the Atlanta Braves 5-2 on Wednesday night.
Jansen, who had 41 saves last year in his only season with the Braves, faced four batters for his ninth save in 10 chances.
“I was locked in,” he said. “At the end of the day, that’s an individual thing to accomplish. We’re here to win ball games and get to the playoffs and try to win a championship. It’s just another day. You have to stay focused for that. It was an unbelievable experience.”
Jansen wanted to reach 400 at Fenway Park but didn’t mind doing it in Atlanta. He grew up as a Braves fan in Curaçao cheering for longtime center fielder Andruw Jones.
“It can’t be better coming against the team I grew up watching, loving, and I did it today here in their stadium,” Jansen said.
The 35-year-old right-hander trails Billy Wagner by 22 saves for sixth place on the career list. Jansen retired Sean Murphy on a shallow fly, gave up a double to Eddie Rosario, retired Ozzie Albies on a flyout and struck out Travis d’Arnaud to end it, lowering his ERA to 0.77.
Jansen is the first reliever since Detroit’s Francisco Rodríguez in 2016 to reach the 400-save milestone. Mariano Rivera of the Yankees is the career leader with 652 saves.
“It was awesome, man,” said Jansen, who had 350 saves in 12 years with the Los Angeles Dodgers during a run that lasted until 2021. “It’s a moment I won’t ever forget.”