To say that Bowie reliever Craig House is well traveled would be an understatement. In his sixth professional season, House is with his sixth major league franchise, and the Baysox represent the 11th different team he has played for.
"It's hard on my family," the 27-year-old said about the effect his career has on his family living in his home town of Las Vegas. "But it's better than having a nine-to-five job, so you can't complain."
Four years ago, it would have been difficult to convince House that he would still be playing Class AA baseball in 2004.
In 2000, House's second season, the right-hander raced through every level of the Rockies minor league system and found himself in Colorado by season's end. With the Rockies, House got hit hard, compiling an earned run average of 7.24 in less than 14 innings.
"It happened really fast," House said of his rise to the majors. "I got up there and got hit pretty good and lost my confidence. I didn't know how to deal with failure."
House had a decent 2001, but his 2002 season was cut short by an arm injury brought on when the Dodgers attempted to change his unorthodox delivery.
As House drives toward the plate, his back foot jumps up off the mound, giving him extra drive and zip on a fastball that at times registered 100 mph on the radar gun.
The attempt to make his delivery a more conventional over-the-top style didn't work for House.
"They told me to use my legs when I was a freshman in high school, and that's what I did," House said of his delivery. "People say it looks like it hurts but, knock on wood, it never does."
Two years after the injury, House has regained most of his arm strength and while he may not throw as hard, Bowie has a more confident and consistent pitcher than the one that reached the major leagues in 2000.
Through 15 games with the Baysox, House has recorded a 2.57 ERA over 21 innings, striking out 16 in the process and bringing stability to the bullpen.