Quite a blow for the runner-up in the 2018 Belgian championship, the Borgerhout Squirrels. Ace pitcher, Kenny van den Branden has decided to turn his back on the Squirrels to join the Hoboken Pioneers.
Kenny van den Branden guided the Borgerhout Squirrels to a spot in the Belgian championship series. His strong outing in game six of that series forced a game seven vs the Deurne Spartans, who eventually won the championship of Belgium.
Van den Branden is leaving the club in disagreement. With him, eight players are leaving the Squirrels as well, one of them, the first baseman David Ochoa Blanco.
After a season in the first division, a second-tier league in Belgium, the Pioneers returned at the highest level in Belgium in 2018 and finished in fourth place with a 15-25 record in the six-team BBG.
In his baseball career, Kenny van den Branden spent time in the Dutch hoofdklasse as he played for UVV from Utrecht (one season) and for Curaçao Neptunus (two seasons). Especially in his two seasons with Neptunus, Van den Branden sported solid records (8-1 with a 1.26 ERA in 2015 and 9-0 with a 0.62 ERA in 2016).
With Van den Branden in their ranks, the chances for the Hoboken Pioneers to finish with a winning record will increase.