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Former MLB All-Star convicted of statutory sexual assault

Sep 11, 2019; San Francisco, CA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates closing pitcher Felipe Vazquez (73) throws against the San Francisco Giants in the ninth inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 11, 2019; San Francisco, CA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates closing pitcher Felipe Vazquez (73) throws against the San Francisco Giants in the ninth inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

Felipe Vazquez, a former All-Star closer for the Pittsburgh Pirates, was convicted Thursday on 15 charges related to sexual misconduct with a minor.

A Westmoreland County, Pa., jury found the 29-year-old guilty on 10 counts of child sexual abuse, two counts of unlawful contact with a minor and one count each of statutory sexual assault, corruption of a minor and indecent assault of someone under 16.

Vazquez was found not guilty of 10 charges of unlawful contact or communication with a minor.

Vazquez is expected to be sentenced within 90 days. He faces decades in prison and possible deportation back to Venezuela.

Vazquez was arrested in September 2019 after his relationship with a girl was discovered. The relationship began in 2017, when she was 13 and wished him happy birthday on social media.

Major League Baseball suspended Vazquez when the charges first were revealed.

According to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Vazquez faces other charges of child pornography and unlawful contact with a minor in Florida because he allegedly continued a relationship with the girl when she moved there in 2018.

Vazquez spent five years in the majors with the Washington Nationals (2015-16) and Pittsburgh (2016-19), making the National League All-Star team in 2018 and 2019. He recorded 89 saves, a 17-13 record and a 2.61 ERA in 323 career games.

–Field Level Media