FORT MILL, S.C. - Kevin Milwood walked onto the pitchers mound hoping to convince the New York Yankees to give him one last chance in the big leagues.
He walked off it early, hoping his worst performance on the comeback trail didn't convince them otherwise.
Charlotte ripped Millwood for six runs in just two innings of work, and the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre offense couldn't recover in time to avoid a 6-3 loss on a windswept Thursday night at Knights Stadium.
After two strong performances in the minors - one for Double-A Trenton and one most recently with the Yankees on Saturday - Millwood had New York in a tough position. Even with no spot open in the big league starting rotation, the Yankees have been contemplating whether to bring Millwood to the big leagues before the out clause in the minor league contract he signed in March kicks in May 1.
Until Thursday, the results were on the veteran right-hander's side.
But Charlotte hit him early and hit him hard. Two batters into the game, the Knights had a run. Leadoff man Alejandro De Aza ripped a double past the dive of center fielder Greg Golson in left center field, and he scored just a few pitches later when Jim Gallagher singled to center.
Millwood, in fact, had to escape the first inning, pitching out of a two-on, one out jam to avoid further damage.
He wasn't as lucky in the second inning.
With one out, five of the next six hitters he faced got hits.
Veteran infielder Gookie Dawkins hit a home run over the wall in dead center field to make it 2-0.
Light-hitting shortstop Eduardo Escobar ripped a line drive double over Golson's head and off the center field wall, and he scored when De Aza followed with a bloop single up the middle.
It was 3-0, and it was about to get worse.
Gallagher ripped a single to right, and even after slugger Dayan Viciedo struck out, Charlotte had two runners on. They both came around when catcher Tyler Flowers connected on the first pitch Millwood threw, sending it over the wall in right center field to make it 6-0.
Millwood would throw just five more pitches. His day was over after just two innings. He allowed six runs on seven hits, and the fact that he fanned four proved little consolation