Raico Santos

From BR Bullpen

Raico Santos Almeida

  • Bats Left, Throws Left
  • Height 5' 9", Weight 191 lb.

BR register page

Biographical Information[edit]

Raico Santos has played in the Cuban Serie Nacional and for the Cuban national team. He is a cousin of Roel Santos. [1]

He debuted in 2014-2015, going 3 for 17 for the Alazanes de Granma with a double, walk and five runs in 21 plate appearances over 35 games. He backed up Urmanis Guerra in right field. He did not play the next season, then hit .236/.386/.325 in 2016-2017; he backed up Yoelkis Céspedes in right and Dennis Laza in left for the league champs (he did not play in the postseason). [2]

Granma repeated in 2017-2018 and, this time, Santos played a bigger role. He batted .315/.432/.424 with 70 runs and 47 walks in 71 games, going 9-for-11 in steal attempts. He was 2nd in runs (one behind Guillermo Avilés) and tied for 8th in steals (with Juan Arencibia, Alberto Calderón and Andrés Quiala). He was 0 for 12 in the postseason, though. [3] He did not play the next season, though, and there were rumors he had defected. [4]

By 2019-2020, he was back in the Serie Nacional, hitting .360/.471/.489 in 39 games for Granma. When they did not make the second half, he was a reinforcement for Santiago de Cuba and batted .331/.423/.448 for the second half. He then switched teams for the playoffs, joining Matanzas and putting up a .257/.447/.314 batting line with 7 runs in 10 games as Matanzas won their first title. For the regular season, he was 9th in hits (107), tied Yusniel Ibáñez and Quiala for 3rd in doubles (23), tied for 2nd with 10 sacrifice flies (two behind Yuniesky Larduet), led with 22 times hit by pitch, was 5th in OBP (.445, between Yasniel González and Alexander Ayala) and 10th in OPS. [5] He was slated to play in the Mexican League in 2020 before the season was wiped out by the COVID-19 pandemic. [6]

Santos kept on rolling in 2020-2021, hitting .350/.471/.455 for Granma with 69 runs in 69 games then .409/.506/.545 with 15 runs and 18 RBI in 17 postseason games. He drove in the first run of the finals, bringing in his cousin Roel with a sacrifice fly off Yoanni Yera. His two-run homer off Joel Suárez in the 8th was the winning hit in Game 2. He scored three runs in Game 4 then scored the winner in the finale, driven in by Guillermo García. For the regular season, he was 5th in runs (between Laza and Humberto Bravo), tied for 6th with 11 steals and was 10th in OBP. [7]

He then made his Cuban national team debut, picked alongside his cousin for the Americas Olympic Qualifier. In his debut, he pinch-hit for Frederich Cepeda and drew a walk from Venezuela's Andrés Machado; he stayed in the game in left field. The next day, he was 2 for 4 with a run, singling off Evan Rutckyj and Scott Mathieson of Canada. Finally, he finished a double shy of a cycle, scoring two and driving in four in a rout of Colombia. Cuba did not make the Olympics, but he had impressed in his work. He was second in the tournament in average (behind Jeison Guzmán), tied his cousin for 2nd in OBP (behind Kevin Luciano), led in slugging (1.111, .034 ahead of teammate and former major leaguer Erisbel Arruebarrena) and OPS (96 ahead of Arruebarrena). [8]