As a teenager, he was a batboy, clubhouse assistant and worked on the maintenance crew for the Birmingham Barons. He played shortstop for Hoover High School. As a senior, he was named to the 2003 Birmingham News All-State team, and was the News' All-Metro Player of the Year.
After he graduated from Hoover, Paiml played for the University of Alabama where he was a four year starter from 2004 to 2007. He was drafted on June 18, 2007 by the Chicago White Sox in the 15th round. After the draft, he was sent to the rookie league Great Falls (Montana) White Sox minor league team.