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Guerrero, Angels snap three-game skid in win vs. Orioles

BALTIMORE (AP) -- Vladimir Guerrero homered twice. Javy Lopez
also put one over the wall, but his hit produced an out.

That pretty much summed up a Sunday afternoon in which Guerrero
led the Los Angeles Angels past the error-prone Baltimore Orioles
9-3.

Guerrero drove in three runs and Chone Figgins hit a three-run
homer for the Angels, who received a fine pitching performance from
John Lackey and got 13 hits in their most productive offensive
showing of the season.

Guerrero hit solo homers in the first and seventh innings, and
an RBI single in the fifth. The homers were his first extra-base
hits since homering in his first at-bat on opening day.

"Every time I go up to the plate all I am looking for is to
make solid contact. That will never change regardless of whether I
have one home run or no home runs," Guerrero said through an
interpreter. "I never go up looking for the home run."

Lopez was merely looking for a home-run call when he sent a
drive to center in the second inning with Miguel Tejada on first
base.

As the ball approached the 7-foot wall, Darin Erstad leaped to
make the catch. When he tumbled to the ground, it was uncertain
whether he caught the ball.

By the time Erstad displayed his empty glove, Tejada had
retreated from second base and was passed by Lopez. By rule, Lopez
was credited with an RBI single and called out for passing the
runner.

"Me and Tejada were looking at the umpire the whole time,
wondering what kind of call he was going to make. We were wondering
if the ball was out or (Erstad) got it in his glove," Lopez said.
"One umpire called an out, so obviously Tejada went back to first
base. Then the other umpire said the ball was out. But by the time
he made the call, I had already passed Tejada."

The Orioles might have survived that mistake, but they also
misplayed a double steal in the next inning, allowing Maicer
Izturis to steal home and give the Angels a lead they would not
lose.

With runners at the corners and Adam Kennedy at the plate,
Figgins got caught in a rundown while trying to steal second.
Izturis broke for the plate and beat the throw from first baseman
Jeff Conine while Figgins took second.

"We made a couple of mistakes that cost us," Orioles manager
Sam Perlozzo said. "We could have come out of that five innings up
3-2 or 4-2 and it would have been a whole different ballgame. But
it unraveled after that."

Lackey (2-1) allowed two runs and six hits in eight innings. He
struck out five and walked none.

"John Lackey is probably the biggest story. He was terrific for
eight innings," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.

Angels closer Francisco Rodriguez entered in the ninth, but left
with a cramp in his hamstring after Jay Gibbons hit a one-out RBI
double. Brendan Donnelly got the final two outs.

Conine homered for the Orioles, whose three-game winning streak
ended.

Orioles starter Kris Benson (1-2) gave up four runs and nine
hits in five innings. The right-hander came in with a 1.93 ERA, but
yielded at least one hit in every inning.

His wife, model Anna Benson, was among the 19,904 in attendance.
It was the second time she's seen Kris pitch since he came to the
Orioles in an offseason trade with the New York Mets.

"I was in Tampa, but it's my first time in Camden Yards," she
said. "I'm just here with him. Any time he pitches, I'll be
here."

Guerrero sent a 2-1 fastball into the left-field seats to give
Los Angeles a 1-0 lead.

Baltimore tied it in the second, but was left aching for more
after Tejada and Lopez inadvertently crossed paths.

Los Angeles made it 4-1 with a two-run fifth. Izturis doubled
and scored on a double by Kennedy, who came home on a broken-bat
single by Guerrero.

Conine hit his 200th career homer in the bottom half, an
opposite-field solo shot to right.

Guerrero homered off Sendy Rleal in the seventh, and the Angels
pulled away with a four-run eighth, capped by Figgins' homer.

Game notes
Angels DH Tim Salmon left in the fourth inning with an
injury. "His groin got a little bit tight. That'll be day to
day," Scioscia said. ... Conine has three hits this season: two
homers and an RBI double. ... Los Angeles has scored in the first
inning in eight of its 12 games.