Former slugger Danny Tartabull, who played for the Mariners, Royals and Yankees in his 14-year Major League Baseball career, is wanted in Los Angeles County for failing to pay more than $276,000 in child support.
He tops the SoCal county’s list of “most wanted” deadbeat dads, owing more money than any of L.A.’s other fugitive fathers.
Tartabull, 50, pleaded no-contest in January 2011 when he was charged with failing to pay child support for his sons Zach and Quentin. He was given probation and now owes $276,204.93 in child support, according to the L.A. County Child Support Services Department.
“He failed to comply with the terms of his probation and on May 2, 2012, he was ordered to surrender and serve 180 days in county jail,” the department notes (PDF). “Mr. Tartabull failed to appear and the court issued a warrant for his arrest with bail set at $200,000.”
You’d think Tartabull would have the money to pay his child support. After all, he made nearly $33 million as a major-league slugger, hitting 262 home runs over 14 years with the Seattle Mariners, Kansas City Royals, New York Yankees, Oakland Athletics and Chicago White Sox.
Born in 1962 in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Tartabull started his career in Seattle and was fifth in A.L. Rookie of the Year voting in 1986, his third year appearing in the majors but first playing more than 19 games. He was an All-Star in his fifth and final season with the Royals in 1991, when he batted .316 and led the league with a .593 slugging percentage. That earned him a five-year, $25 million contract from the Yankees.
Tartabull never quite lived up to expectations, though, and while he hit 31 homers in 1993, he batted in the mid .200s through the remainder of his career. After the Yankees traded him to Oakland partway through 1995, Tartabull finished his time in the majors with one season with the White Sox in ’96 and a short, three-game stint with the Philadelphia Phillies in April 1997 before retiring.
At some point, Tartabull settled in California. His older son, Zach, was a wide receiver at Valencia High School in Valencia, Calif., and is now apparently a model. Tartabull’s younger son, Quentin, is a star defensive back at Bishop Alemany High School in Mission Hills, Calif., and reportedly has verbally committed to play football at Cal.