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Scoggins: Anatomy of a game-saving play as Correa throws out Ohtani

The clock in Carlos Correa's head told him he had time, but everything had to function without the slightest of hiccups. Four components to one play that had zero margin for error.

The Twins executed it flawlessly. Correa was the star of the sequence with a rocket throw clocked at 92.2 miles per hour that preserved a much-needed win and left teammates gushing afterward in the clubhouse.

"That was incredible," Kyle Farmer said.

"It was crazy," Edouard Julien said.

"Special," Byron Buxton said.

Correa's relay throw home from the right field grass arrived a split second before Shohei Ohtani's cleats for the third out in the seventh inning with the Twins leading the Los Angeles Dodgers 3-2.

Ohtani was called safe but replay review overturned it, allowing the Twins to keep their lead and hold on for a 3-2 win that snapped a four-game losing streak.

Julien hit two home runs and the bullpen held the Dodgers in check, but Correa's throw was the defining moment because of the timing and degree of difficulty of that one play.

"It was a great baseball play," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said.

Ohtani was on first with two outs in the seventh. He took off on Freddie Freeman's hit to the right field corner. Correa was shaded near second base at his shortstop position. Based on the situation, he knew he was the relay man, with Julien covering second.

"If Julien had a better arm, then I would let him go get it," Correa said, laughing.

Correa had a long run to the right field line. He set up about 135 feet from home plate. Ohtani, a fast runner, was flying around the bases.

Right fielder Alex Kirilloff fielded the ball cleanly after it bounced around the wall and threw quickly to Correa.

"I knew with two outs that they were going to send him," Correa said. "I just prepare myself to make a throw."

Correa took one hop and fired a laser that arrived in a perfect spot for catcher Christian Vázquez to get his glove down before Ohtani's slide.

Correa is so smooth defensively that he made that throw — 92 miles per hour on a line — from that distance to home plate look routine. Except there is nothing routine about that play.

"He's got as strong a throwing arm as you're going to find," Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said.

Kirilloff figures he had the best view in the stadium — down the line directly behind him — to see and appreciate Correa's cannon arm.

"The cool thing is it doesn't tail a whole lot," he said. "It's kind of a rope. He comes across the field and wants it in his hands for a reason."

Correa was surprised when home plate umpire Marvin Hudson called Ohtani safe.

"I was kind of like, what? Maybe I missed something," Correa said. "When I saw the replay, it was pretty evident."

The opposite outcome would have sucked the oxygen right out of Target Field. The game would have been tied with Freeman on third base and cleanup hitter Teoscar Hernández coming to bat.

The Twins were staring at their first 0-5 start at home since 1962.

Correa's throw changed the entire mood.

"He aced a throw to home plate," said Roberts. "If it was a little bit higher, he would've been safe. It was just a really good baseball play. Unfortunately, we were on the wrong end of that one."

Correa said he practices those scenarios often, especially in spring training. And he constantly works on his arm strength.

"If you notice, my throws in warmups are always firm," he said. "For that exact same reason. When the play needs me to let it go, I let it go."

The moment called for him to cut it loose and be perfect in his location. He fired a strike to keep his team's first homestand of the season from being a total bust.