SPRINGDALE, Ark - The provisional rosters for the 2013 World Baseball Classic, which will be held from March 2 - 19 were announced today. Nine players from the Royals organization were named to the provisional squads including two current and three former Naturals.
J.C. Sulbaran (The Netherlands) joined the Royals and was assigned to the Naturals in August of 2012 after being acquired in a trade with the Cincinnati Reds. While in Northwest Arkansas Sulbaran pitched six games, all of which where starts and ended the season with a 7.62 ERA.
Outfielder, Paulo Orlando (Brazil), spent all or a portion of the last three season with the Naturals. A 26-year-old native of Sao Paulo, Brazil, Orlando was acquired by Kansas City from the Chicago White Sox in exchange for left-handed pitcher Horacio Ramirez in August, 2008. Orlando ended the 2012 campaign batting .279 with 40 RBI and 21 stolen bases.
Right-handed pitcher Kelvin Herrera (Dominican Republic) spent part of the 2011 season in Northwest Arkansas. During his tenure with the Naturals combined with starter Will Smith to toss a no-hitter on July 19 at Arkansas. Herrera tossed the final 2.0 innings to complete the first no-hitter in Naturals history.
Salvador Perez (Venezuela) caught 79 games in Northwest Arkansas batted .283 with nine home runs and 43 RBI and was named the "Best Defensive Catcher" in the organization by Baseball America in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Perez was brought up to Omaha during the 2011 campaign and made his big league debut in August of the same season.
Infielder, Irving Falu (Puerto Rico), was selected in the 21st round of the 203 June Free Agent Draft. Falu spent all of 2008 with the Naturals and hit .301 in 101 games, with five home runs, 42 RBIs and 11 stolen bases. During the 2012 season Falu broke his career high of triples (nine) which he set while playing for the Naturals.
The Northwest Arkansas Naturals are the Double-A Texas League affiliate of the Kansas City Royals and play at state-of-the-art Arvest Ballpark, located in Springdale. Visit our website, nwanaturals.com, for information on season tickets and ticket plans.