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Swallows slugger Balentien returns to Japan

Kyodo

Wladimir Balentien, who was arrested in Florida this month on charges of domestic violence, arrived in Japan on Tuesday in time for the start of the Tokyo Yakult Swallows’ spring training.

The 29-year-old has pleaded not guilty to charges following an incident with his wife, Karla. The two are currently in the process of getting a divorce. Balentien established a new single-season home run record last season, when he hit 60, and won the Central League’s MVP Award despite his team finishing in last place.

Balentien was released on bail on Jan. 15 and will need to return to the United States if the charges against him are brought to trial. He is already scheduled to return to reach a divorce agreement with his wife.

He will hold a news conference on Wednesday.