Outspoken Christian Chicago Cubs utility man Ben Zobrist and his wife, Julianna, have separately filed for divorce with the 2016 World Series MVP’s court filing alleging that his wife of 14 years is guilty of “inappropriate marital conduct.”
Zobrist, 37, filed for a legal separation on Monday in Williamson County, Tennessee, according to The Tennessean. Williamson County is where the couple own an offseason home.
Meanwhile, Julianna Zobrist, a Christian pop artist, filed for a separation in Cook County, Illinois.
The news comes as Zobrist has been on a leave of absence from the team since May 8.
According to the court filing in Tennessee, Julianna Zobrist “has been guilty of inappropriate marital conduct which render further cohabitation impossible.”
“Husband is unsure if the marriage can be salvaged,” the filing reads, according to The Tennessean.
Attorney Karen Krehbiel, who represented Chicago billionaire Kenneth Griffin in his divorce in 2014, has been hired as Julianna Zobrist’s lawyer while the three-time MLB all-star has hired Nashville attorney Helen Rogers, according to The Chicago Tribune.
The Chicago Tribune reports that an assistant for Krehbiel said that they will “not at this time” respond to the claims made by Zobrist in his court filing.
Cubs manager Joe Maddon, who was also Zobrist’s manager when he played for the Tampa Bay Rays for the first nine seasons of his MLB career, told media before Wednesday’s game against the Cincinnati Reds that he doesn’t know when to expect Zobrist back with the team.
“I totally respect the man’s privacy. I totally respect the man. I feel for him,” Maddon said. “Having gone through that process myself, it’s no fun. For him to do it under these circumstances here, I just want to respect his privacy. There’s no timeline involved. He’ll let us know.”
The couple first met when Julianna Zobrist was 16, through Julianna’s sister’s husband, who was teammates with Zobrist during his time at Olivet Nazarene University in Illinois, According to The Chicago Tribune.
The two are both the children of pastors and didn’t start formally dating until she was in college at Belmont University.
The Tampa Bay Times reported that Ben and Julianna Zobrist began their relationship through instant messaging in 2001, later followed by a “prayerful courtship” filled with “chaste dates and long phone conversations about God, family and baseball.”
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Samuel Smith