Wladimir Balentien updates from Thursday, January 16, 2014:
- The Yakult Swallows have received about ten messages from fans. Many have been critical, none have been very positive. Source: Daily Sports 1/16/2014
- Balentien's lawyer told the judge his client was not at risk of fleeing because he was interested in returning to Japan to play baseball. The lawyer was placed in charge of Balentien's passport. Balentien was released on bail (50,000 US dollars) on the 15th and told to stay away from his wife Carla. He is scheduled to hold a press conference on the 16th. Source: Daily Sports 1/16/2014
- Carla spoke to the Japanese press and said she was mentally tired. People close to the situation have told reporters she is thinking about dropping the charges. The two sides are in disagreement over what happened and Yakult Swallows' official Masayuki Okumura will attempt to do a little mediation, if possible. Source: Daily Sports 1/16/2014
- Quotes from FNN Report broadcast on Wednesday:
- Carla: When asked if Balentien was ever violent with her: "No, this was the first time." ... "When he saw I was with my family, he got upset and climbed in through the window." ... "Please respect my husband's privacy." ... "He might be a superstar, but he is also human."
- Lawyer: "He wants to make it clear that he loves his family and he's looking forward to the opportunity of bringing his wife and his children, and his child, uhm, back to Japan for spring training and he's looking forward to, uhm, resolving this misunderstanding in this case."
- Before Okumura left for the United States, the Swallows were replying on a lawyer in the United States that was introduced to them by a representative in Japan, meaning the information they were getting first had to go through two people and therefore might be incomplete. Source: ZakZak 1/16/2014
- The Balentien Burger offered at E.A.T near Jingu Stadium might be taken off the menu after this incident. Source: Tokyo Sports 1/16/2014
[UPDATE 1/17 @ 2:09am]
Updates from later in the day.
- Okumura arrived in Miami on the 15th US time/16th Japan time. He took some Japanese newspapers with him to show Balentien how the media is handling the news. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/16/2014
- Okumura gave the Swallows an update on Thursday. He informed them that he spoke to Balentien over the phone and was able to confirm that he was out on bail. Okumura was told to stay in the United States for as long as it took to make sure everything was in order and okay. If it meant having to stay until Balentien boarded a plan for Japan, that was fine as well. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/16/2014
- There is a chance Balentien will not make the start of spring camp since he is scheduled to make another appearance in court on the 24th. The organization is not planning, at this point, to issue any fines or warnings and would rather see him apologize to fans by playing well on the field. Source: Sponichi 1/16/2014
Shukan Bunshun published an article about the day Wladimir was arrested by police in Miami. The article was written by freelance reporter Takashi Miyama, who happened to be at the Balentien residence on the day of the arrest because he was conducting an interview with Carla Balentien. Carla contacted Miyama because she wanted to reveal everything about the marital problems she was having with her husband. Below is a summary of what was written in the article (there is actually more to the article, I am only summarizing the actual events of the day).
On the day before the interview, Wladimir called Carla and told her he wanted to drop by the house to pick up some baseball equipment. Carla said no. Wladimir called again on the day of the interview at around 4:00pm and suddenly showed up at the house. At the time, Carla, her parents, her aunt, her fourteen-year-old son, and two-year-old daughter were inside. Carla contacted the police, locked all the doors, and went upstairs to the second floor with her family and relatives. Miyama hid in a room on the first floor.
Wladimir started banging on the door and window. He shouted that he knew they were inside and that it was his house. He found an open window on the first floor and made his way in. Wladimir glanced in Miyama's direction and proceeded toward the stairs. Miyama tried to warn the family upstairs.
Wladimir and Carla got into argument in the hallway. He grabbed her, forced her into a bedroom, and locked the door. Carla's mother was crying out for her daughter while trying to open the door.
Four police cars arrived moments later. Wladimir calmed down after police made their way inside the house and grabbed him from behind. Carla pointed at the red marks on her upper arm and showed police court papers while trying to explain what happened.
In addition to the Shukan Bunshun, Miyama also recounted details of the ordeal to TBS News. You can view footage of the segment here.