Ramon D. Santiago

Bats Both, Throws Right Height 5' 11", Weight 150 lb.

MLB Debut May 17, 2002

Born August 31, 1979 in Las Matas de Farfan, D.R.

Signed by Ramon Pena of the Detroit Tigers as an amateur free agent in 1998. Santiago was 23 years old when he broke into the big leagues on May 17, 2002, with the Detroit Tigers.

Ramon was traded to Seattle with Juan Gonzalez (infielder) from Detroit in exchange for Carlos Guillen (infielder), January 8, 2004.

In January 2006, Ramon was signed to a minor league contract by the Detroit Tigers and was invited to their Spring Training camp. He made the team and has been with the Detroit Tiger organization since then.
Ramon became a Free Agent at the end of the 2011 season. Along with his agent, Diego Bentz of SFX Sports negotiated a 2-year contract with the Detroit Tigers on November 30th, 2011 for $4.2 million.

Ramon’s Career Highlights:


Ramon was on a team other than the Detroit Tigers for the first time in 8 years. The Red’s General Manager Walt Jockkety and Manager Bryan Price warmly welcomed him to his first day at the Red’s Spring Training facility in Goodyear, Arizona. In a tight battle among non-roster invitees, Ramon was selected to the 25 man roster at the end of Spring Training. He will mainly serve as the backup Shortstop but can also play Second Base, Third Base and even played some Left Field during Spring Training.

2014 Dominican Winter League

Ramon took a break for most of the winter, as he was a free agent. When his Dominican team, the Escogido Leones were in a position to win the Round Robin playoffs in January, Ramon answered the patriotic call from Leones GM Moises Alou to come play for Escogido for the final games of the Round Robin and the Serie Final (Dominican World Series). Playing at Second Base, Ramon played in 3 Round Robin games where he put together a .400/.500/.500 slash. Ramon played in 6 games of the Serie Final against Licey, mainly starting at Second Base. He ended the Serie Final with a .294 Batting Average, which ended on January 28th. On January 29th, Ramon signed a minor-league contract with the Cincinnati Reds and was invited to the Red’s Spring Training Camp in Goodyear, Arizona.


Ramon saw sporadic action during Spring Training in Lakeland. He did have a Grand Slam Home Run off of the Phillies’ Roy Halladay in Clearwater, FL. He came out of camp on the 25-man squad as a back-up to Shortstop Jhonny Peralta and Second Baseman Omar Infante. When Omar was on the DL, Ramon saw extended action at Second Base. When Peralta was suspended for 50 games due to PED use, Ramon saw a few more inning until the Tigers acquired Jose Iglesias from the Red Sox, who then became the Tiger’s everyday shortstop. Painful shin splints required Iglesias to take more frequent breaks, which allowed Ramon to play more often. Sometimes Ramon would not see an at-bat for 10 days. Sometimes he would play 3 or 4 games in a row.

2012-13 Dominican Winter League

Ramon played Winter Ball in the Dominican Republic with the Escogido Leones. When he started playing with the Leones the end of November 2012, they were in last place in the league. Three weeks later, Ramon helped lead the Leones to the
Round Robin playoffs, where they finished second and gained a berth to the 2012-13 LIDOM (Dominican Republic Baseball League) Serie Final (Dominican Baseball Championship). The Leones (Lions) swept the Cibaenas Aguilas (Eagles) 5 games to none. Ramon led the team in RBIs (tied with 4) during the Championship, starting every game at Shortstop.


Ramon was an Opening Day starter for the Detroit Tigers at Second Base in 2012 after a fierce competition for the position between Ryan Raburn and Brandon Inge, even though Ramon did not get to see much action in Lakeland. Ramon did not see regular action for most of the season except for a short period in July. The Tigers advanced to the World Series where Ramon made one plate appearance in Game 1.


Ramon completed his 8th season with the Tigers in 2011, playing at Second Base, Third Base and Shortstop.

* Finished 7th in the American League with 11 Sacrifice Hits
* His walk-off Triple on June 13th against Tampa Bay marked the first walk-off triple by a Tiger since June 7th, 1968 when Mickey Stanley did it against the Indians.
* Matched a career high 4 hits on August 28th at Minnesota.
* Hit his first WALK OFF HOME RUN on August 30th against Kansas City after coming into the game as a pinch runner and then hitting the walk off in his next at bat - the first time this has been done since Tiger Tommy Veryzer did it against the Brewers in 1974.
*Tied his career high 9-game hitting streak September 5-14.
* Hit .295 (38 for 129) in 49 games after the All Star Break.
* Recorded 3 hits in Game 1 of the ALCS on Oct 8th at Texas - tying the Tiger franchise record for hits during an ALCS game.
* Racked up 9 hits in the ALCS, tying the Tiger club record held by Placido Polanco (2006) for hits in an ALCS series.
* Had a .375 Batting Average in the ALCS, second best on the Tiger’s
(Miguel Cabrera was tops with .400).
* Ramon was selected by Major League baseball to participate in the MLB all-star game series in Taiwan in November 2011 but since he became a free agent, he was unable to participate.
* Ramon did not play winter ball in the Domincan Republic for the first time in his baseball career due to the fact he was becoming a free agent (wise move - he has a good agent).


Ramon showed up for Spring Training in 2010 in probably the best shape ever as he had just finished playing in the Caribbean World Series on Feb 7th, 2010. Ramon started in the Tiger’s first two Spring games and then started sparingly as Leyland made it know that he already made the 25 man squad and since he had been playing ball all winter. He mainly played at Shortstop during the spring but also saw action at Second and Third Base. He finished the spring with 10 RBIs. Considering the number of at bats he got in the spring, he was one of the most productive RBI men for the Tigers.

Manager Jim Leyland announced the day before the 2010 Regular Season started that Ramon would share equal time at Shortstop with Adam Everett, who had a rough spring. Leyland also said that Ramon would see time at Second Base, stating that he
“doesn’t...really call him (Ramon) a utility player. He’s a very good player for us.”

Ramon ended the season with a .263 batting average in 367 plate appearances for the Tigers, playing 934 innings in 110 games. He played 617 innings at Shortstop and 217 innings at Second Base. Although he played fewer innings, he led Detroit in Assists with 271 and also led the team in Sacrifice Hits with 8. He was second in HBP with 7. His fielding average was .979 in 85 games at Shortstop (3rd in American League) and .986 in 25 games at Second Base. He was second on the Detroit roster completing 53 Double Plays, second only to First Baseman Miguel Cabrera, who played 351 more innings than Ramon. Ramon also led all Detroit Shortstops in Range Factor.

Ramon equaled his career high with 4 hits in a game against the Nationals on June 17th.

He put together a 9-hitting streak June 25th-July 5th.

Among other Major League Shorstops in 2010, Ramon rated among

Baseball Reference.com lists Ramon as one of the top Shortstops
in the American League in 2010

American League Shortstops Fielding Percentage

(Putouts + Assists/(putouts + Assists + Errors)

1. Jeter (NYY) .989
2. Izturis (BAL) .985
3. Santiago (DET) .979

American League Shortstops Range Factor/ 9 inn
(9 * (Putouts + Assists) / Innings Played)

1. Pennington (OAK) 4.93
2. Ramirez (CHW) 4.89

3. Santiago (DET) 4.86

All American League Shortstops Total Zone Runs
[The number of runs above or below the average the player was worth based on the number of plays made]

1. Wilson (SEA) 12
2. Pennington (OAK) 11
3. Santiago (DET) 9
Wilson (SEA) 9
Ramirez (CHW) 9

ALL American League Position Players Defensive WAR

Defensive Wins Above Replacement
[Defensive measure of wins above replacement, but given only the defensive stats of the player. For this calculation, we use a replacement level on defense is the league average]

1. Pierre (CHW) 1.9
2. Lopez (SEA) 1.8
3. Bourjos (LAA) 1.7
4. Gutierrez (SEA) 1.6
5. Choo (CLE) 1.5
Longoria (TBR) 1.5
7. Gardiner (NYY) 1.4

8. Santiago (DET) 1.2
Morneau (MIN) 1.2
Pennington (OAK) 1.2
Wilson (SEA) 1.2


November 2010, Ramon was traded from the Cibao Gigantes, his Dominican Winter League team for the past two seasons, back to his original Dominican team, the Escogido Leones of Santo Domingo. He was traded for Audy Ciriaco (Toledo/Erie infielder in Detroit organization) and former Detroit reliever Roman Colon.

2009 Ramon had another strong performance at the Tiger spring training camp in Lakeland, Florida. He played in 24 games with 52 at bats ending with a .288 BA, .373 OBP, .365 SLG and .783 OPS. He also had 2 stolen bases.
The Tiger’s signed shortstop Adam Everett during the off season so Ramon has ended up platooning with Everett at shortstop during the 2009 season. By the end of May, Ramon racked up 20 RBIs, fifth on the Tigers in run production.
Ramon played in 93 games in 2009 with 262 At Bats with 70 hits. He finished with a .267 BA, 7 HR and 35 RBI. He had a .318 OBP, .386 SLG and .704 OPS. He had 1 Stolen Base and 17 Walks.

Ramon ended up tied for 8th among the 2009 American League Sacrifice Hits leaders with 10:

2009 American League Sacrifice Hits Leaders:

Everett (DET) 15
Punto (MIN) 13
Gutierrez (SEA) 13
Aybar (LAA) 12
Span (MIN) 12
Andrus (TEX) 12
Betancourt (TOT) 11
Laird (DET) 10
Tolbert (MIN) 10
Santiago (DET) 10
Cabrera (CLE) 10

2009-2010 Winter League Baseball

Ramon played for the Cibao Gigantes in the Dominican Winter League this winter. He played at Second Base, Shortstop and Third Base while batting .322. He played in every game once he started playing the end of November 2009. In the Dominican League playoffs, Cibao won the Round Robin tournament and faced the Escogido Leones in the Dominican Championship. Escogido won the championship in 9 games. They selected Ramon to play on the Dominican team in the 2010 Caribbean World Series, which the Dominican team ended up winning easily. Ramon batted .316 in the Caribbean World Series, starting every game.

2008  Ramon played winter ball in the Dominican Republic for the Escogido Leones.  He played a considerable amount at Third Base.  On Valentine's Day, February 14th, 2008 he married Andreina Cabo.  In Spring Training, his off-seaons workout regime paid off as his hitting ability greatly improved to go along with his outstanding defensive skills.  Early in Spring Training, Manager Jim Leyland informed the press that Ramon would be the #1 utility fielder on the Tigers and would be heading to Detroit after Spring Training concluded.  Ramon finished Spring Training batting .366 with a team-leading .469 OBP and played defense without an error. He played in 25 games with a .463 SLG and .933 OPS.
Ramon continued to play the major utility player role for the Detroit Tigers in the 2008 season.  He's led the team in On Base Percentage for most of the year while playing Shortstop, Second Base and Third Base.

2007  Ramon had a strong Spring Training but due to Neifi Perez' $ 3 million salary obligation from the Tigers and the fact that Ramon had one option remaining, Ramon was sent to the AAA Toledo Mudhens at the end of Spring Training.  
He continued to play there everyday, batting leadoff at shortstop until he was called up to Detroit on August 17th, 2007 when Omar Infante was sent down to Toledo.  From August 17th through September 30th Ramon played in 31 games for the Tigers (he started 17 games), ending up with a .284 batting average and a .324 OBP in 67 At Bats.  He committed 2 errors on 93 chances, ending up with a .978 fielding average.

On November 10th, 2007, Ramon was signed to a one year contract with the Tigers worth $575,000.  Omar Infante was traded to the Chicago Cubs (later traded to the Atlanta Braves) and Neifi Perez was not resigned by the Tigers after he violated the MLB steroid policy.  The Tigers traded for Braves shortstop Edgar Renteria and moved Carlos Guillen to first base, so Ramon will be the number one backup at shortstop for the Tigers in 2008.  Of course, Ramon could also easily fill in at second base and third base, as needed. 

 Ramon is selected to the Detroit 25 man roster after 2006 Spring Training.  He was a utility fielder mainly playing at shortstop and second base with occasion starts at third base and appearances as DH.  Ramon was moved down to the AAA Toledo Mudhens later in the season and back up to Detroit when the roster was expanded to 40 players in September.  During the American League Championship series against Oakland first baseman Sean Casey was injured.  Carlos Guillen was moved to first base and Ramon was brought in to play shortstop during the ALCS.  Ramon started Game 1 and Game 2 of the 2006 World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals at shortstop and made several substitute appearances later in the World Series.

Ramon is chosen as the MVP for the 2005 Division Champion Tacoma Rainiers (AAA-Seattle), playing both Shortstop and Second Base. He is also awarded the team's "Gold Glove" award. He saw limited time with the Mariners, getting only 13 plate appearances. He was released by the Seattle Mariners and then signed by the Detroit Tigers to a minor league contract in the off-season.

Ramon was traded to the Seattle Mariners from the Detroit Tigers after the 2003 season. He had a very strong spring training in Peoria, Arizona with the Mariners and was one of the last two players cut from the Opening Day roster in 2004, along with Hiram Bocachica. He played the majority of the 2004 season with the Mariner’s AAA team, the Tacoma Rainiers but did get called up several times to play with Seattle, getting 45 plate appearances.

Spent first full season in the Majors, beginning the year as Detroit's starting second baseman...Topped the AL with 18 sacrifices, the most by anyone since 1996...... established a career high with an eight game hitting streak April 6-16, batting .360 (9x25) with three doubles and four RBI...started his first game at shortstop in Colorado after 50 starts at second base...strung together 218 errorless chances at shortstop June 30-Aug. 27...established a career high with four RBI on September 18 vs. Toronto.
The Seattle Mariners acquired Ramon from the Detroit Tigers in the trade for shortstop Carlos Guillen in 2003.
Ramon Led the American League in Sacrifice Hits in 2003.

Final 2003 American League Leaders
Sacrifice Hits

Santiago – DET 18
Berroa – KCR 13
Guzman – MIN 12
Eckstein – ANA 10
Hairston – BAL 10
Matos – BAL 10
Ellis – OAK 9
Randa – KCR 9
Alomar – CHW 8

Made stops at double-A Erie and Triple-A Toledo before having his contract purchased by Detroit on May 17...made Major League debut May 17 versus Texas and doubled off Dave Burba in the eighth inning for the first ML hit...had a career-high three hits May 18 vs. Texas, falling a home run shy of the cycle...hit his first ML home run to lead off the game June 3 vs. Boston (off Pedro Martinez); finished with two home runs for his first multi-home run game...led off the game the following day, June 4, against Boston with a home run (off John Burkett)...departed the game July 23 vs. Kansas City in the third inning with a right wrist injury...placed on the DL on July 24 with a fractured right hamate bone; underwent surgery on July 25...returned Sept. 1...scratched from the lineup Sept. 21 versus New York with soreness in his right wrist; was shut down for the remainder of the season…underwent surgery to correct chronic dislocation and looseness in his left shoulder, by Dr. Kyle Anderson on Sept. 26 at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit...ranked among AL rookie leaders in three categories; tied for second with five triples, tied for fourth with eight stolen bases and ninth with a .306 on-base percentage...one of four unanimous selections to the TOPPS Rookie All-Star team. 

Limited to serving as designated hitter while recovering from off-season surgery on his right shoulder...finished fourth in the Florida State League with 34 stolen bases...recorded a season-best 10-game hitting streak July 21-August 4, batting .395 (15x38) with five runs, two doubles and four RBI.

Earned both mid- and postseason all-star honors in the Midwest League while playing with single-A West Michigan...forced to serve as the designated hitter after July 23 due to an impingement in his right shoulder...sidelined for most of August with the injury, which ultimately forced him to undergo surgery in the off-season...named the best defensive shortstop in the Midwest League by Baseball America.

Split first pro season between Gulf Coast Tigers and Single-A Oneonta - now the Connecticut Tigers - (...combined to hit .326, second best among short-season league switch-hitters and fourth-best among short-season league shortstops...led Gulf Coast Tigers with 20 stolen bases...posted a 12-game hit streak July 7-27, batting .400 (20x50) with four doubles, a triple and four RBI...hit safely in 11 of his first 12 games with Oneonta Aug. 22-Sept. 2...Named the second-best prospect in the Gulf Coast League following the season by Baseball America.

June 3rd, 2002: Playing for the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park, in just his second game as a leadoff man, Ramon Santiago became the first player since July 28, 2000 (Terrence Long) to lead off a game with a home run against the great Pedro Martinez.

"I've never had a chance to meet him," Martinez said afterward of his fellow Dominican. "He's too young. He's not my era. I'm an old goat."

But old and young goats alike would have had trouble envisioning what Santiago kicked off with that home run.

The next hitter, Damion Easley, also homered. It was the first time the first two hitters of any game had ever gone deep on Pedro -- and, in fact, the first time he'd ever allowed back-to-back home runs at any point to two American League players.

But even that wasn't the end of all this. Later in the game, Santiago -- who had hit seven homers in his entire minor-league career -- homered again, off Tim Wakefield.

"I looked at Felipe (Alou, the Tigers' bench coach)," Tigers manager Luis Pujols told Booth Newspapers' Danny Knobler, "and said, 'All those people in the sports books in the Dominican are broke tonight.' "

Well, we hope they rode the hot hand, because the next night, Santiago led off a second straight game with a home run, this time off John Burkett.

According to David Vincent of the Society for American Baseball Research, Santiago achieved the following: He became the first Tiger to hit the first three homers of his career within a two-game span. He's the 15th big leaguer to do it, and the first since Pittsburgh infielder Freddy Garcia in 1997. He became the third Tiger to hit first-inning leadoff homers in consecutive games.

The others were Dick McAuliffe in 1969 and Lou Whitaker in 1983.

Rookie Ramon Santiago wrote the script for quite a story he can pass down to his future generations. ... He hit his first major league home run against three-time Cy Young winner in Pedro Martinez. ... Tigers manager Luis Pujols was impressed. "I know that our country was watching this game tonight on TV and everybody saw Santiago hit his first major league home run against Pedro Martinez," said Pujols.