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Canada's Julien's homers twice, Correa nabs Ohtani at the plate in Twins' 3-2 win over Dodgers

Minnesota Twins players celebrate after the 3-2 win in a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Wednesday, April 10, 2024, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Abbie Parr)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Edouard Julien homered twice and scored three runs for the Minnesota Twins to spark a lagging lineup and lead a 3-2 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday.

Julien, who entered the afternoon in a 3-for-28 start to the season, led off the first and fifth innings with opposite field drives into the bleachers in left for his first career multi-homer game.

“I had a good spring training, but it’s different in the regular season. I’ve just got to build on this," the second baseman from Quebec City said. “I knew if I just kept hitting the ball hard, I’m going to find holes.”

Alex Vesia (0-1) relieved starter Bobby Miller to start the fifth and took the loss after Julien's first major league home run — his career total is 18 — against a left-hander.

“Those were great swings,” manager Rocco Baldelli said. “Seeing that is really a wonderful sign for us.”

Ending an 0-for-33 team-wide skid with runners in scoring position was just as encouraging for the Twins, who have an MLB-worst .184 batting average. Byron Buxton delivered the streak-stopping RBI single in the third after Julien, the second-year second baseman, started the inning with a single.

“You can call it a relief if you want, but it’s just a moment that I think settles the group down in a lot of ways,” Baldelli said.

Max Muncy led off the fourth inning with a home run and Teoscar Hernández hit an RBI double for the Dodgers, whose opportunity to tie the game in the sixth was thwarted when Shohei Ohtani — who went 1 for 3 with a walk — was thrown out at the plate to end that inning.

“I don’t think he would’ve sent him if it wasn’t Shohei. Just the sheer footspeed,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “With two outs you’ve got to make them make that play.”

Carlos Correa came through for the Twins, as they've come to expect.

Freddie Freeman drilled a double down the right field line that bounced off both walls before Alex Kirilloff snagged it, prompting third base coach Dino Ebel to wave Ohtani in from first. Correa came over from shortstop to take the relay throw in shallow right and fire a perfect strike to catcher Christian Vázquez, who pivoted left to snap a tag on Ohtani's right leg.

“When the play needs me to let it go, I let it go," Correa said. "I’m always ready.”

Home plate umpire Marvin Hudson initially ruled him safe, but the call was overturned by replay review.

“If it was a little bit higher, he would’ve been safe,” Roberts said. “It was just a really good baseball play.”

The Twins secured their first win at Target Field after matching the club's second-worst home start in a season. They began 0-5 in 1962 and 0-4 in 1981 at Metropolitan Stadium.

Steven Okert earned his first career save with a scoreless ninth, capping a stellar performance by an injury-thinned bullpen in relief of starter Chris Paddack. Kody Funderburk (1-0) finished the fifth for Paddack by striking out Muncy with runners at the corners. Griffin Jax struck out the side in the eighth.

Chris Taylor, who pinch hit for James Outman and struck out to start the ninth against Okert, who is 1 for 27 with 14 strikeouts this season.


Dodgers: After an off day, RHP Yoshinobu Yamamoto (1-1, 4.09 ERA) starts on Friday night to begin a three-game series against San Diego. RHP Michael King (2-0, 3.14 ERA) takes the mound for the Padres.

Twins: RHP Pablo López (1-1, 2.84 ERA) pitches on Thursday afternoon to begin a four-game series at Detroit. LHP Tarik Skubal (1-0, 2.92 ERA) starts for the Tigers.



Dave Campbell, The Associated Press

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