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Santiago keeps his swing active with winter ball


LAKELAND, Fla. -- Jhonny Peralta isn't the only Tigers shortstop who reported to camp lighter on Wednesday. Ramon Santiago came to camp looking and feeling thinner as well.

In Santiago's case, it wasn't a workout and dietary overhaul. It was more about his return to winter ball, something the Tigers wanted the 33-year-old to do after he skipped the Dominican League last winter and then struggled through most of the summer.

"I don't play every day here," Santiago said, "so I need those at-bats [in winter ball]."

Santiago said Wednesday morning he plans on doing more agility work with strength and conditioning coach Javair Gillett before the season begins.

Santiago hit .325 (27-for-83) in 21 games for Escogido in the Dominican regular season, then helped them to a Dominican League title last month. He didn't join them for the Caribbean Series, preferring to get at least a week of rest before reporting to camp.

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