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Vlad returns, nails 2 HRs as Angels down Orioles

• Heroes: Guerrero hit a two-run drive to cap a five-run third inning and hit another two-run shot in the seventh. Chone Figgins doubled twice and drove in three runs.

• Goat: Victor Santos, making his Baltimore debut, allowed five runs and seven hits in 2 2/3 innings. He was the 25th pitcher used by the Orioles this year, breaking the club record of 24 set in 2006.

• Figure this: It was Guerrero's 33rd career multihomer game, the fourth this season. He needs one more home run to reach 25 for a 10th consecutive year.

• Injury report: The Angels lost center fielder Gary Matthews Jr. to a sprained right ankle. X-rays were negative, and the team said he will miss at least the next five games.

-- ESPN.com news services

Angels 10, Orioles 5

BALTIMORE (AP) -- Looks like Vladimir Guerrero has sufficiently
recovered from the arm injury that forced him to miss four games.

The evidence: A pair of two-run, 400-foot homers in the
Los Angeles Angels' 10-5 victory over the Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday
night.

Guerrero had been out because of an inflamed right triceps. The
star right fielder came back as the designated hitter for the AL
West leaders.

"If Vlad can swing the bat, that's big," Los Angeles manager
Mike Scioscia said before the game. "Just to get his bat in the
lineup, that's important."

To say the least.

"Any time one the best players in baseball is back in your
lineup, it makes you better as a team," said teammate Reggie Willits, who had three of the Angels' 14 hits.

Guerrero homered off Victor Santos to cap a five-run third
inning and hit another two-run shot off Fernando Cabrera in the
seventh.

"I think both those pitches didn't have much finish on them,"
Orioles manager Dave Trembley said. "With Guerrero, he's such a
great hitter, I think you're probably better off making him hit
pitches out of the strike zone than you are throwing him pitches in
the strike zone. The guy's a great bad ball hitter to begin with. I
think you're complicating the matter even more when you throw the
ball in the middle of the plate to him."

It was Guerrero's 33rd career multihomer game, the fourth this
season. He needs one more home run to reach 25 for a 10th
consecutive year.

The Angels, however, lost center fielder Gary Matthews Jr. to a
sprained right ankle. X-rays were negative, and the team said he
will miss at least the next five games.

He left in the third inning after his spikes got caught in the
dirt during an awkward slide into second base on a two-out grounder
to shortstop Miguel Tejada, who threw to first -- not second -- base.

"I thought I broke it," said Matthews, who was on crutches and
wearing a protective brace. "I was thinking I wouldn't be able to
play in the playoffs. But it's not broken. Now it's a matter of
getting the swelling down so we can strengthen it."

Chone Figgins doubled twice and drove in three runs as the
Angels won their fifth straight road game. They're 49-25 at home
and 36-34 on the road.

Los Angeles also played without infielder Maicer Izturis, who
has a sore right foot.

"It's part of baseball. Guys are going to get nicked up,"
Scioscia said. "We're getting down here to crunch time, it's not
an opportune time. You deal with what you're dealt. We have depth
on this club, and we have to keep moving forward."

Joe Saunders (8-3) gave up four runs and 10 hits in five-plus
innings, but received enough offensive backing to earn his first
victory in four starts since Aug. 19.

Kevin Millar went 3-for-4 with a homer and two RBIs for the
Orioles, who have lost 17 of 20. The defeat assured Baltimore
(61-82) its 10th consecutive losing season.

Santos (0-1), making his Baltimore debut, allowed five runs and
seven hits in 2 2/3 innings. He was the 25th pitcher used by the
Orioles this year, breaking the club record of 24 set in 2006.

"I felt all right, but in the third inning I didn't make many
good pitches and they took advantage of it," Santos said. "You
can't make those kinds of mistakes against a first-place team."

It was the sixth straight game in which a Baltimore starter
failed to get past the fifth inning.

"I think it's beyond concern," Trembley said. "It's just been
a fact that we've lived with far too long."

Los Angeles trailed 1-0 before batting around in the third
inning. After Willits singled in a run and Figgins ended an
11-pitch at-bat with an RBI double, Orlando Cabrera hit a sacrifice
fly. Guerrero sent Santos' next pitch over the center-field wall.

Figgins doubled in a run in the fourth, and Millar hit a two-run
homer in the bottom half.

Baltimore closed to 6-4 in the fifth when Tike Redman hit a
leadoff triple and scored on a groundout by Nick Markakis.

The Angels pulled away in the seventh. After Guerrero homered
off Fernando Cabrera, Casey Kotchman singled and scored on a double
by Howie Kendrick.

Tejada hit an RBI single in the bottom half to make it 9-5.

Figgins, who had three hits, drew a bases-loaded walk off
Radhames Liz in the ninth.

Game notes
Figgins went 3-for-4 and is 19-for-32 (.594) against the
Orioles this season. ... Over the last 20 games, Baltimore has been
outscored 178-89. ... Guerrero has 24 RBIs in his last 23 games and
has hit safely in 19 of the last 21.