Santiago Espinal was born on November 13, 1994, in Santiago, Dominican Republic. He is an infielder in the MLB.
Espinal was born and grew up in the Dominican Republic until age 13, when he moved to the US. He attended Lyman High School in Longwood, Florida for four years. He then moved to New York and graduated through Penn Foster High School. Espinal attended Seminole State College of Florida, and then attended Miami Dade College on a scholarship and played college baseball for them in 2016. Espinal was drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the 10th round of the 2016 MLB draft.
Espinal played for the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League Red Sox in 2016, hitting .244/.330/.267 with 10 runs batted in (RBI). He played for the Class-A Greenville Drive in 2017, hitting .280/.334/.358 with four home runs and 46 RBI. On June 28, 2018, Espinal was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for Steve Pearce and cash considerations. Espinal split the 2018 between the Advanced-A Salem Red Sox and Dunedin Blue Jays, and the Double-A New Hampshire Fisher Cats, hitting .297/.356/.444 with 10 home runs and 60 RBI. He played for the Surprise Saguaros of the Arizona Fall League (AFL) following the 2018 season.
Espinal split the 2019 season between New Hampshire and the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons, hitting a combined .287/.347/.393 with seven home runs and 71 RBI. Espinal was added to the Blue Jays 40-man roster after the 2019 season. On July 23, 2020, he was added to the Blue Jays active roster to begin the 2020 season, which had been delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. On July 25, 2020, Espinal made his MLB debut. Three days later, on July 28, Espinal got his first hit in the Major Leagues against the Washington Nationals. Overall with the 2020 Blue Jays, Espinal batted .267 with no home runs and 6 RBIs in 26 games.
Espinal began the 2022 season expected to platoon at second base with Cavan Biggio but by mid-May was receiving acclaim for his impressive offensive numbers and game-changing defense. Blue Jays General Manager Ross Atkins declared Espinal "an everyday player" after he was one of only five Blue Jays' players to appear in all of Toronto's first 17 games. Espinal was selected for the 2022 All-Star Game as a replacement for José Altuve.