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Updated: Thursday, June 17, 2004 1:31 AM EDT
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MINNESOTA 5, MONTREAL 4 (11 INNINGS)
 

MONTREAL (Ticker) -- Luis Rivas ' first home run in two months appeared foul, but that is how extra-inning games have gone for the Montreal Expos this season.

Rivas hit a controversial homer off Jeremy Fikac in the 11th inning as the Minnesota Twins rallied for a 5-4 victory over the Expos.

Montreal squandered a two-run lead in the ninth and remained winless in five extra-inning contests after being on the wrong end of a missed call by the umpires.

Rivas opened the 11th by hitting a 2-1 pitch from Fikac (0-2) deep down the left field line. It was called a home run even though the ball did not hit the netting that covers the first few feet of fair territory at the wall.

"I hit it pretty good, but I didn't even see the ball," Rivas said. "I thought they wanted to call it foul and when I saw the umpire call it fair, I didn't know what was going on."

Rivas began to slow down while rounding first base before umpires made the call, allowing him to round the bases for his first home since April 18.

"I saw the umpire signal home run and that's all I really give a (concern) about to tell you the truth," Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire said. "I'm not really worried about it. I knew they wouldn't switch it around."

Expos manager Frank Robinson argued feverishly and, after he was ejected, put his hands around his throat to signal a choking sign to the umpires.

"I knew it was foul," he said. "What can you do about it? Four guys out there all saying that they saw it the same way, you've got to be kidding me. I don't care how they saw it. All four may have seen it one way but it wasn't right."

Juan Rincon (8-2) got the win with two scoreless innings and Joe Nathan worked around a leadoff walk in the 11th for his 17th save.

Minnesota had a 1-0 lead entering the sixth, but Montreal tied it on an RBI single by Jose Vidro and Endy Chavez scored the go-ahead run when left fielder Lew Ford 's made a wild throw to third.

Nick Johnson followed with a homer to give the Expos a 4-1 cushion.

The Twins pulled within 4-2 on a sacrifice fly by Doug Mientkiewicz in the eighth. Jacque Jones hit a solo homer off Chard Cordero with one out in the ninth and Minnesota loaded the bases before Cristian Guzman plated the tying run with a grounder.

"(Cordero) didn't have it in the ninth inning," Robinson said. "He was kind of all over the place, but some of those pitches caught the plate."

It was the 22nd come-from-behind win of the season for the Twins, who won for the sixth time this season when trailing after the eighth.

"Jacque hits a big home run to give us a little life and then a couple things went our way," Gardenhire said. "And then Luis, who I put in there for defense, ends up hitting a home run. A good win for us but a crazy ballgame."


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