Roel Santos: “I want to win Gold at the Pan-Am Games.”

Roel Santos is one of the most dynamic players on the Cuban National Baseball Team. The two-time Mexican League All-Star has four solid tools and could be a determining factor for Cuba in the Central American and Caribbean Games.

Over the last three seasons in the Liga Mexicana de Béisbol he has hit a robust .352, stolen 28 bases and slashed .419/.522/.941 over that span. Last season with the Olmecas de Tabasco he hit .411 and was third in the race for the league’s batting title.

Santos was a big part of Cuba’s only victory in the tournament so far swatting a two-run homerun in a 4-2 win over Curaçao. After establishing a career in Mexico, the outfielder is looking to expand on his legend this winter.

Tell me about the level of talent in this tournament or compare it with that of the Mexican Baseball League?

Here in the Central Americans there is a little bit of everything, it is not such an even level in reference to some teams, but there are many professional players who have gone through a professional baseball system. As a whole baseball worldwide has changed a lot, there is a lot of competitiveness. You have to play good baseball to be able to prevail over any team, no matter how weak it is. The Mexican League is still superior to this tournament by far. Without detracting from the players who are here, because there is talent and as I told you before there are many skilled players here.

You make two consecutive All-Star games in Mexico, tell me about where that feat falls in your career achievements?

Truthfully I feel very happy, happy with what is happening with my career in Mexico. Since I arrived at the Olmecas de Tabasco in 2019, after being a cellar dweller we have changed the face of our team and we have become one of the best teams in the league. I am very grateful to the fans for selecting me to my second consecutive All-Star Game and it is something that fills me with satisfaction. I am very grateful to my family, my coaches and the fans.

There was an announcement a few days ago that the Cuban Baseball Federation has opened the national team to all Cubans and all players of Cuban descent as well. Give me your opinion on that?

The Federation is making adjustments to improve the quality of baseball on the island. I think it’s something that should have happened earlier because it’s good for fans who want to see our team back on top internationally. The Federation was us to play good baseball and have a powerful. This is something that is very important to Cubans worldwide.

Are the Pan American Games a goal for you?

The Pan American Games are a definitely goal for me since I have never been able to win gold there, I only have a bronze in two editions in which I have participated. It is a goal that I have to be a Pan American champion. It would be something important for me, for my career, for my family and for the followers of Cuban baseball.

Will you play ball in any league this winter?

This year with God’s grace I want to participate again in the Mexican Winter League. Above all, I want to be healthy and I’m one hundred percent psyched up to put on a good show wherever I go this winter.

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