In his office in the visiting clubhouse at Target Field, Ned Yost fumed following a 3-1 loss to the Twins on Monday night.
His team was holding on by a thread to a one-run lead over the Twins, trying and failing to produce with runners in scoring position, when two umpiring decisions stopped any ounce of momentum the Royals had built.
With Mike Moustakas and Salvador Perez in scoring position and no outs in the fourth inning, Lucas Duda was called out on strikes on a pitch that came in too high. Duda lingered in the batter's box to question plate umpire Will Little before walking away.
Barking from the dugout, Yost criticized Little for the missed call in the fourth inning. Little, unfazed, shrugged in Yost's direction. Yost barreled onto the field and was ejected for the first time this season.
"What does that mean?" Yost told reporters after the game. "Does that mean you don’t care? Is that what it means? So that’s what set me off. I’ve got my player working out there and you’re gonna shrug your shoulders at me? You’re missing a call, a crucial call? I didn’t like it. I don’t know what they’re doing."
The next two batters grounded out to end the Royals' threat.
Two innings later, the Royals challenged a pick-off call on Rosell Herrera. Replays showed that Herrera, who singled with two outs in the inning, slid his hand onto the bag at first before the Twins' Joe Mauer could apply a tag. Given the green light by Royals replay coordinator Bill Duplissea, who is an MLB-best 19 for 24 on challenges, the Royals asked for a review.
Umpires upheld the call.
"I thought I was 100 percent safe," Herrera said. "Yeah, I was surprised. I could see on the (video) board that my fingers were on the bag when he tagged me."
Held to 1 for 9 with runners in scoring position, the Royals lost their 10th game in a row.
"I don’t have any idea what’s going on," Yost said. "I went back and looked at the replay on Herrera, and I don’t know what’s going on."