MINNEAPOLIS -- It was a strange turn of events in the fourth inning Wednesday night at Target Field.
It started when A's shortstop Jed Lowrie ripped a ball down the first-base line on an 0-1 curveball against Twins reliever Josh Roenicke with the bases loaded and nobody out. First-base umpire Bill Miller originally ruled the ball was foul for a second strike, but A's manager Bob Melvin came out to argue the call, as he believed the ball was just fair.
The four umpires then met at first base to discuss the situation and ruled that Lowrie's hit was indeed fair, and awarded him a two-run double to give the A's an 8-1 lead.
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire came out to argue the call and was eventually ejected by Miller. It marked the fifth time this season Gardenhire was tossed and the 67th time in his career.
Gardenhire didn't talk about the play after the game, as he only offered an opening statement on his club's performance in its season-worst 18-3 loss. But Melvin thought Miller made the right call.
"You could see from our angle it was fair," Melvin said. "[Miller] admitted he was trying to get out of the way of it and didn't get a good view. It's all about getting it right, and they got it right. It's unpopular over on the other side. I would have thought the same thing. But they did get it right, and that's what it's all about. So you've got to give credit to the umpire crew."
The A's went on to have a 10-run inning, sending 13 batters coming to the plate.
Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.