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Pirates player: Wife said baby was mine

BRADENTON — The 20-year-old Pirates minor league player whose wife is charged with kidnapping a baby said today she told him the baby was his daughter.

Jose Tabata said in a statement read in Spanish at a news conference at Pirate City that his wife, Amalia Tabata, lied to him about her criminal background.

“The truth is that my wife told me many lies. ... One that hurt me a lot was her history as a criminal. ... But the worst lie was that she completely falsified her pregnancy and the eventual birth of a baby girl, which would have made me a father for the first time,” Tabata said, according to an English translation of his statement distributed by the Pirates.

“Imagine how that made me feel,” Tabata said.

According to arrest reports, Amalia Tabata on Monday abducted a 2-month-old baby in Plant City when she posed as an immigration official and threatened the parents with deportation.

She was arrested the next day in Manatee, after someone called 911 with information about the baby’s location. The child was recovered, safe and sound, and returned to her parents.