On Memorial Day, Matt Whitehouse needed some remodeling.
The Bowie Baysox made quick work of the RubberDucks left-hander Monday, chasing him before many of the 3,786 in attendance at Canal Park had time to settle in with their customary hot dog and lemonade on a 76-degree afternoon.
By the time Whitehouse left, the Baysox (27-24) had punished him for five runs — four earned — on five hits in 2? innings en route to a 6-4 victory.
Whitehouse (1-2, 3.14) walked two and struck out one, but fell victim to double trouble, giving up RBI doubles to Erick Salcedo and Adrian Marin in the second.
Fittingly, Stevie Wilkerson’s two-run home run over the ribbon in left field knocked Whitehouse out of the game in the third. The Baysox finished with four extra-base hits in 16 plate appearances with Whitehouse pitching.
“He really didn’t have it,” RubberDucks manager Mark Budzinski said. “Everything was middle of the plate and up. This is a good hitting team. You can’t make those mistakes to these guys. They made us pay early.”
A spot starter for the Ducks (22-24), who have lost three in a row, the performance was a stark contrast from his last outing.
In that start against the Altoona Curve, Whitehouse took a no-hitter into the fifth and walked one before being relieved by Cameron Hill.
“I definitely learn from it,” Whitehouse said. “I sat in the dugout afterwards for a couple innings, took what I could from it and flushed the rest. … As a starter, five days from now, it’s a brand-new ballgame. I’ll be ready to go.”
In contrast, Matthew Grimes (2-4, 3.86) gave the Baysox a solid outing.
The Baysox starter went six innings, allowing five hits and one earned run. He walked one and struck out two.
“He had command of three pitches,” Budzinski said. “He mixed it up. When he was behind in the count, he threw a couple change-ups and breaking balls for strikes when he needed to.”
That said, the RubberDucks didn’t go down without a fight.
Luigi Rodriguez homered to right to open the sixth and Eric Haase hit a three-run bomb to the Ducks bullpen to close it to two with no one out in the seventh.
“Last year, struggling helped me a little bit,” Haase said. “I adjusted my schedule to be ready when I got that chance. It’s been working out for me a little bit.”
In more bad news for the Ducks, right-handed reliever Dylan Baker left in the eighth inning after a 12-pitch outing with right shoulder soreness. He walked one and didn’t give up a hit in one-third of an inning.
His status is to be determined.
The Indians have made some interesting roster moves in the last two days. Outfielder Mike Papi (.291, five home runs, 20 RBI) was promoted to the Triple A Columbus Clippers. Papi batted 16-for-44 (.365) against left-handed pitching for the Ducks.
RubberDucks ace Julian Merryweather was also promoted to the Clippers. Merryweather (4-2, 3.38) led the Ducks in wins, strikeouts (52) and innings pitched (50?). The right-hander replaces righty Travis Banwart, who went on the Columbus disabled list with shoulder soreness.
It leaves three empty spots on the Ducks’ 25-man roster.
The RubberDucks travel to Altoona for a three-game series with the Western Division-leading Curve. Left-hander Thomas Pannone (1-1, 2.08) will face left-hander Brandon Waddell (0-2, 4.29) at 6 p.m. Tuesday.