KITCHENER – Intercounty Baseball League teams are filling in gaps in their rosters as the 2019 season approaches in May.
The Hamilton Cardinals have signed Wilfred Laurier University rookie of the year and former Burlington Herd pitcher Ben Braun. Braun helped Laurier win the OUA Baseball championships this past fall, and has spent part of 2 summers playing both junior and senior in Burlington.
The young lefty has pitched in 23 games in the IBL with a 0-4 record and 1 save with 49 strikeouts in 45 innings.
The Welland Jackfish, the newest members of the IBL after relocating from Burlington, also announced the signing of left-hander Rich Corrente and right-hander Casey Bouillere-Howard for the 2019 season. They’ll join a roster that includes lefties Chris Boatto, Chris Lazar and Tanner Guindon.
Corrente, 27, in his fifth season of IBL play, is a former all-star who recorded a 6.21 ERA last season with the Burlington Herd, striking out 21 white walking 17.
Boatto, 24, returns to the IBL after spending the 2018 season with the Burlington Herd. In 54.2 innings pitched, Chris recorded a 5.43 ERA with 41 strikeouts, sixteen walks and a 1-4 record. The former London Major also suited up for Alderson Broaddus University where he was a three-year starter for the Battlers leading them to the G-MAC conference title in 2016.
Last month, the new Welland club made a splash by signing former St. Louis Cardinals draft pick DeAndre Asbury-Heath. The 23-year-old South Carolina native joins the Jackfish after finishing the 2018 season with the Brantford Red Sox. In seventeen games, DeAndre hit for a .344 average with eight home runs a double and thirteen RBIs.
Welland has also signed outfielder Ian Horne, a 27-year-old who spent the 2018 season split between the Pecos League and Canadian-American Association. Over fifty-three games played, Horne recorded a .303 average with ten doubles, a home run and twenty-one RBI.
The Cardinals previously announced the return of relief pitcher Dan Connerty and former McMaster standout Jake Chiaravalle, who has a career average of .271 with 6 home runs and 29 RBIs. He joins Grant Arnold, Chris Beer and Connor Bowie, who all re-signed after the 2018 season.
New to the Cardinals in 2019 will be Western Major Baseball League home run record holder Riley MacDonald, a BC native who played with the Brooks Bombers last season.
MacDonald hit for .362, with 13 doubles, one triple, 20 home runs and 49 RBI for the Bombers, before finishing his season with the Quebec Capitales of the Can Am League.