Hot bat gives Orlando shot at everyday job

May 18th, 2016

KANSAS CITY -- Royals right fielder Paulo Orlando continues to make the case that he could be the everyday right fielder. But Royals manager Ned Yost said for now he simply was going to go with the hot hand.

Orlando singled, tripled and homered in the Royals' 8-4 win over the Red Sox on Tuesday night. The homer was a two-run blast in the eighth inning that put the game out of reach.

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"We've been looking for someone to get hot," Yost said of the battle between the right-handed-hitting Orlando and the left-handed-hitting Jarrod Dyson for the right-field job.

But Yost won't go beyond day to day, even though Orlando is hitting .333 overall and .306 against right-handers.

"We went into the season not thinking about a hard platoon because he hits right-handed hitters decent," Yost said. "Right now, we need the offense from the bottom of the order. He was huge for us tonight."

Doe Orlando think he's making his case?

"Well, you know, I'm here for anything they want," Orlando said, smiling. "They know what I can do to help the team."

Orlando nearly hit for the cycle. A shot down the first-base line in the sixth looked like a possible double until it was snared by Red Sox first baseman Hanley Ramirez.

"I tried to [get the cycle]," Orlando said. "They made pretty good defense down the line."

Orlando also had a big two-run single in the fourth that made it 5-1, giving the Royals some momentary separation. He delivered the single after falling behind in the count, 0-2.

"Sometimes I get too nervous and swing at bad pitches," Orlando said. "But they hang a bad pitch, curveball, and I got it to center field."

Orlando is trying to not look too far ahead in terms of becoming an everyday player.

"I'm very happy to be here," he said. "Whatever they want from me, defense or baserunning. I just want a chance to help."