Orlando with the Omaha Storm Chasers
|Kansas City Royals – No. 16|
November 1, 1985 |
São Paulo, Brazil
|April 9, 2015, for the Kansas City Royals|
(through 2017 season)
|Runs batted in||76|
|Career highlights and awards|
Paulo Roberto Orlando (Portuguese: [ˈpawlu oʁˈlɐ̃du]; born November 1, 1985) is a Brazilian professional baseball outfielder for the Kansas City Royals of Major League Baseball (MLB). He represented Brazil at the 2013 World Baseball Classic.
Paulo Orlando was born in São Paulo, Brazil. His mother is a nurse. When Orlando was 12 years old, a Japanese-Brazilian physician who worked with Orlando's mother recommended that he try his hand at baseball, an obscure sport primarily played by the Japanese community in Brazil. Because baseball fields were so few, Orlando could only play baseball on weekends. He relied mostly on his speed and was not among the best players on his youth teams. However, as was typical in Brazil, most of his teammates abandoned the sport as they got older.
Growing up, in addition to baseball, he played association football (soccer). In his early teens, he also took up track and field. He ran the 200-meter sprint in 21 seconds and the 400-meter dash in 46.36 seconds for the Brazilian Youth Olympic team. In 2005, he quit track to focus on baseball; he began playing in the Dominican Republic and Venezuela.
Minor League career
Orlando was discovered and signed by a Cuban scout for the Chicago White Sox in 2005. He was named the fastest base runner in the White Sox system for the 2006 and 2007 seasons, as well as best defensive outfielder for the 2007 season.
Orlando was traded to the Royals on August 9, 2008 in exchange for pitcher Horacio Ramírez. He led the Carolina League in triples in 2008 while playing for Winston-Salem in the White Sox system and Wilmington in the Royals system. In 2010 with the Northwest Arkansas Naturals, he hit .305 with 13 homers, 64 RBI and 25 steals to earn Texas League All-Star honors. There was some talk that he would be added to the Royals' 40-man roster after the season, but a poor showing in the Puerto Rican winter league left him off the roster. He became the third Brazilian-born player, and first non-pitcher, to make it to Triple-A when he was promoted to the Omaha Storm Chasers to start 2011. He returned to the Northwest Arkansas Naturals in mid-2011 through 2012, then played for the Omaha Storm Chasers in 2013 and 2014. In 2014, he was named the fastest base runner in the Pacific Coast League. In all, he played 1,017 minor league games.
Major League career
Kansas City Royals
After the 2014 season, Orlando was added to the Royals 40-man roster. He made the Royals opening day roster in 2015 and made his major league debut on April 9, becoming the third Brazilian-born player in MLB history. His first major league hit, a triple off Chicago White Sox pitcher John Danks, was also the first MLB hit for a born-and-raised Brazilian player. Three days later, Orlando became the first player in MLB history to record three triples as his first three base hits. On April 20, Orlando hit his fifth triple in his first seven games, establishing a new major league record for "the fewest games to hit five triples to open a career".
On May 26, Orlando hit his first major league home run in a game against the New York Yankees. On July 7, Orlando hit a walk-off grand slam against Brad Boxberger of the Tampa Bay Rays in the first game of a double-header; it was his second career home run and first-ever grand slam. He was optioned to Omaha Storm Chasers on July 29 to make room for Ben Zobrist.
He became the first Brazilian-born player to win a World Series on November 1, 2015.
Prior to the start of the 2016 season, Orlando and Jarrod Dyson were considered most likely to platoon in right field, though the Royals announced plans for an open competition in spring training.
Orlando and his wife Fabricia, who have a daughter and a son, live in São Paulo all-year-round.
- Grathoff, Pete (15 March 2015). "Royals outfielder Paulo Orlando is now getting his kicks in baseball". The Kansas City Star. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
- Gregorian, Vahe (April 9, 2015). "Paulo Orlando’s meandering path to the Royals resonates in big-league debut". Kansas City Star. Retrieved 12 June 2015.
- Sreeharsha, Vinod (May 15, 2015). "In tiny Brazilian restaurant, KC Royals’ Paulo Orlando draws a crowd". Kansas City Star. McClatchy Foreign Staff. Retrieved 12 June 2015.
- DeFranks, Matthew (10 April 2015). "From Brazil to KC: Royals' Orlando captures a dream in big-league debut". Fox Sports. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
- "Paulo Orlando, OF, Royals". Baseball America. 2015.
- "Player Profile". Minor League Baseball.
- Brazilian OF Paulo Orlando, Left Off Of Royals 40-Man Roster, Makes It Through Rule 5 Draft Archived April 18, 2015, at the Wayback Machine.
- "Brazil: Outfielder Paulo Orlando Might Start Season in Triple A". Baseball de World. 29 March 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
- Berg, Ted (10 April 2015). "Brazilian outfielder Paulo Orlando triples in MLB debut". USA Today. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
- "Royals rookie triples in each of his first three hits". ESPN. 14 April 2015. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
- White, R.J. (21 April 2015). "Royals' Paulo Orlando makes triples history Monday". CBS Sports. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
- Krest, Shawn (26 May 2015). "Royals' Paulo Orlando hits first career home run". CBS Sports. Retrieved 7 July 2015.
- Associated Press (7 July 2015). "Orlando's grand slam in 9th gives Royals 9-5 win over Rays". ESPN. Retrieved 7 July 2015.
- "Royals sign former Orioles OF Snider to minor league deal". ESPN.com. Associated Press. January 29, 2016. Retrieved January 31, 2016.