MINNEAPOLIS, MAY 28 -- Remember how well things went for the Baltimore Orioles on Friday, Saturday and Sunday? That's how poorly things went for them today.

One day after completing a sweep of the Texas Rangers at Arlington Stadium, they lost to the Minnesota Twins, 6-4, at the Metrodome.

They failed to put away the game in the sixth inning, when they had a 4-2 lead with runners on first and second and none out. In the seventh, Kirby Puckett hit his second home run of the game -- a two-strike, two-out, three-run shot that concluded a mighty struggle with reliever Joe Price.

In the eighth, Manager Frank Robinson renewed his feud with umpire Drew Coble. Coble ejected Robinson. Harsh words and bumps were exchanged. After the game, Robinson called Coble a "no-good human being," a "liar" and said Coble was "prejudiced" against him personally.

Coble said, "I'm not prejudiced," adding that "if he thinks I've got something against him, shame on Frank." He also told the Associated Press, "I do plan to talk to Dr. {Bobby} Brown," president of the American League.

It was that kind of a day.

First baseman Randy Milligan homered and drew three of eight walks issued by Minnesota to give him nine consecutive plate appearances in which he has reached base. But the Orioles ended up with only three hits, and they are 1-18 when they get fewer than six in a game.

Coble was behind home plate -- the same position he occupied last Monday, when he ejected Orioles outfielder Joe Orsulak for arguing ball-and-strike calls and approached the Orioles dugout to warn Robinson about questioning the calls.

"He and I are like oil and water," Robinson said. "We don't mix. He's a no-good human being. . . . And he's a liar. . . . I don't like him and he doesn't like me. But at least I have guts enough to say it."

Coble said, "I have nothing against Frank Robinson."

And crew chief Jim Evans said: "You cannot carry grudges in this game and live very long. You have to let bygones be bygones. . . . Every day's a new day."

As for last Monday, Coble explained that he approached the dugout because he thought Robinson was showing him up by using body language to dispute ball-and-strike calls. Coble said that, for example, Robinson would raise his hand, palm down, to eye level and draw it across his face to show that he thought a pitch was high when Coble had called it a strike.

"When I went to Frank," Coble said, "I said: 'Frank, I don't appreciate you showing me up. I don't show you up when you screw up and I don't show your ballplayers up. . . . I expect the same respect that I give you in return.' He said, 'I'll do what I want to.' And I said: 'Frank, that's fine. You do what you want to, and if you do, I'm going to eject you.' "

Today's argument started with one out in the top of the eighth inning, not long after Puckett's homer gave the Twins their first lead, 5-4. Twins Manager Tom Kelly came out to replace pitcher Juan Berenguer with Terry Leach.

Leach took the mound and Kelly started toward the Twins dugout. Before crossing the baseline, Robinson said Kelly turned, took a couple of steps back toward the mound and said something to catcher Junior Ortiz, who then went out to speak to Leach.

Robinson told Coble that Kelly should have been charged with a trip to the mound to visit Leach. (If someone comes out of the dugout, crosses the baseline and visits a pitcher twice in the same inning, that pitcher must be removed.) Coble told Robinson he was incorrect, in a manner that Robinson said he didn't like.

"He said, 'In the American League, you have to cross the line,' like I don't know the rules in the American League," Robinson said. "It was the arrogance of it. His tone, his attitude is what it is."

Coble said he could not allow Robinson to carry on and still maintain control of the game.

All of this was a side issue to yet another frustrating loss.

The Orioles scored one run in each of the first four innings against David West for a 4-1 lead. It was 4-2 in the sixth before Tim Drummond walked Milligan and Craig Worthington, and Bob Melvin sacrificed. Berenguer entered and struck out Steve Finley, who was pinch-hitting for Brad Komminsk. Rene Gonzales flied to left.

Orioles starter Dave Johnson, who went into the game with opponents batting .300, said he had problems adjusting to the difference between the bullpen's pitching mound and the field's. He allowed seven hits in 5 1/3 innings, including bases-empty homers by Puckett and Gene Larkin. He left with runners on second and third and one out, but Price retired Larkin and Carmelo Castillo.

Closer Gregg Olson and setup man Mark Williamson were arm weary, so it was up to Price to get into the eighth. He ran into trouble in the seventh.

With one out, Ortiz doubled and Dan Gladden singled. Price struck out Fred Manrique, bringing up Puckett, who had batted .412 in his last 19 games overall and .422 at home this season.

With the left-handed Price challenging him inside, Puckett fouled off the first two pitches. After taking a ball, he fouled off another. Another ball, another foul -- this one with Puckett barely connecting. After Puckett fouled off the seventh offering, Price said Puckett "moved back off the plate a little bit" as he dug in for the eighth pitch.

Price decided to throw a backdoor slider, a pitch that was supposed to "bite down and away" from Puckett. The ball broke, but it broke across a flat plane and not far enough away. Puckett blasted it into the left-center field seats.

"He's a hell of a hitter," Price said.

Robinson was not as admiring.

"That's the difference between winning and losing ballgames," he said. "It's making pitches when you have to make more often than not."