Rangers manager Bochy ejected over overturned strike three call to Julien

Why did Rangers manager Bruce Bochy spend Saturday's final two innings in the visitor's clubhouse?

"It was a blown call," Bochy fumed after the Twins beat Texas 5-3 at Target Field. "That's why I didn't get to see the end of the game."

Bochy was ejected by home plate umpire Laz Diaz after complaining that Twins second baseman Edouard Julien fouled off a full-count curveball from reliever David Robertson into catcher Jonah Heim's glove. That was Diaz's call, too, that Julien had struck out on a foul tip — but third base umpire Erich Bacchus signaled to Diaz that the ball had bounced in the dirt, and thus shouldn't be strike three.

"I don't know how you make that call down at third base. There's no way he could have seen it enough to overturn it. He was wrong, first of all," said Bochy, who was ejected for the second time this year and 83rd of his managing career.

Making it worse, the four-time World Series winner said, was the fact that Julien, given a second chance, eventually walked, moving two baserunners up, and Carlos Correa hit a sacrifice fly that would have been the third out had Diaz's original call stood.

"It's a shame, it really is. That was a big run. It cost us a run," Bochy said. "That should not happen unless you're absolutely sure the ball hit the dirt, and there's no way he could have been, because we saw it well."

Close enough

By the time Target Field's gates opened on Saturday, more than 100 fans were already lined up, waiting to take possession of a popular giveaway.

"I like the bells," Jhoan Duran said of the recording of his entrance music that plays when his bobblehead, 10,000 of which were given away to an announced crowd of 30,957, is activated. "That's my favorite part."

Duran quibbled a bit over some of the details of the mini-Jhoan, like the lack of visible tattoos, and the tiny stud earrings. "I wear rings on the mound," he pointed out.

But the Twins closer was delighted to be so lionized by such a popular giveaway, even if it offers only a vague resemblance. "They give me a big box of them," he said, about three hours before, appropriately, earning his sixth save by throwing just eight pitches.

His teammates seemed impressed, too. The only Kyle Farmer bobbleheads depict his days at Georgia, not as a big-leaguer, Farmer said, so he enjoyed opening and displaying Duran's.

"If they made a bobblehead of me today, it would have its hands up, being robbed," Farmer joked, referring to extra-base hits nullified this season by diving catches from Baltimore's Cedric Mullins and, on Friday night, Texas' Josh Smith.

Out at home again

For the second game in a row, a Twins baserunner was thrown out at the plate while trying to score from second base on a two-out single. On Friday, it was Christian Vázquez, and on Saturday, Carlos Santana was tagged at the plate after Jose Miranda's single to left fielder Ezequiel Duran to end the seventh inning.

Probably the Twins' two slowest runners, noted bench coach Jayce Tingler.

"We looked at Santana's secondary [lead] and all that — he had a good reaction. It was nothing he did," said Tingler, who for the second day in a row, handled Rocco Baldelli's pre- and postgame news conferences due to the manager's mild illness. "It was a really good throw from Duran, a laser one-hop that was really in the perfect spot."

The Twins even challenged the call, but no evidence was found to overturn the out.


Royce Lewis began his rehab assignment with the Saints by going 1-for-4 and scoring a run as the DH in a 7-0 victory at Buffalo. David Festa struck out seven batters in a row and combined with Jordan Balazovic and Ryan Jensen on a three-hitter, DaShawn Keirsey Jr. homered and drove in four runs and Will Holland also homered.

• Twins Hall of Famer Joe Nathan attended the team's victories Friday and Saturday. Nathan is in Minnesota with his son, Cole, who is receiving coaching from Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau as the 18-year-old prepares to play college baseball.