BALTIMORE, AUG. 27 -- Mike Flanagan knows his days as a Baltimore Oriole may be numbered. And he knows he might have been showcased quite well when going the distance tonight to beat the California Angels, 9-5, as the Orioles began a 13-game homestand.
He was aided by a productive middle lineup that included Eddie Murray, who went four for four and tied Boog Powell's club home run record of 303 in the second inning, and Cal Ripken Jr. and Ray Knight, who each homered and went two for four.
But Flanagan knows he could be disassociated with that lineup soon -- possibly by Sept. 1, so that he would be eligible for postseason play with another team. But he said he blocked that all out tonight.
"Maybe I think about it between starts," said Flanagan, who gave up 10 hits and five earned runs. "I guess I'm at the stage where a lot of people are looking for experienced players and we have some young talent. I'm sure my name has been mentioned."
But Manager Cal Ripken Sr. said he doesn't want to hear about it.
"I've got my pitching chart here and I've got Mike Flanagan on it for five days from now," he said. "I don't pay attention to rumors."
Flanagan said he has felt equally good the last few outings, but said he liked getting ahead in counts more frequently. He is 3-1 with a 3.71 ERA since coming off the disabled list July 17.
Meanwhile, Ripken Jr. showed signs of ending his slump. He hit a three-run homer to clinch the game in the seventh inning, and, during a three-run fourth inning, doubled down the third-base line.
He was hitting .197 since July 22, yet he did not pronounce himself clear of his slump. "You're always cautious about things like that," he said. "I'd just as soon savor the couple of hits and my contribution to the game tonight."
Ripken Sr. sounded relieved that his middle lineup is producing. "We get to the point where we expect some guys to carry the load," he said. "On any ball club you find one guy picking up another guy. It's nice to have everybody in the lineup doing that."
The mid-lineup of Ripken Jr., Murray and Knight first picked things up in the fourth inning. The team was trailing, 2-1, when Ripken Jr. doubled. Murray singled and Knight homered to left to put the Orioles ahead, 4-3.
Jerry Reuss, released by Los Angeles and Cincinnati this season, kept the Angels close early in the game. He went five-plus innings and gave up six hits and five runs, but allowed only Murray's bases-empty homer through the first three innings.
The Angels opened the scoring in the second with a run and, after Murray's homer tied it up in the bottom of the inning, got two more on Doug DeCinces' double in the third.
The Orioles had a three-run fourth on Knight's homer, and scored an unearned run in the sixth. They got four runs in the seventh, when Ripken's home run came after a slightly controversial play. The inning started with Terry Kennedy's short fly to center field. Devon White dropped it, but the Angels claimed momentarily that he had held it long enough. Ripken Jr. then drove in both runners. Knight drove in Murray with a double that provided a 9-3 lead.
DeCinces hit a two-run homer to left in the eighth.
Ripken Sr. said pitcher Dave Schmidt will have his right elbow treated to reduce inflammation. Schmidt is to throw lightly Saturday, but it's too early to tell if he needs surgery, Ripken Sr. said.
Pitcher Don Sutton, whom Yankees telecasters claim scuffed the ball with sandpaper Monday night in Anaheim, Calif., said that's "history," and that the controversy was "not among the best things that has happened to me." He displayed the blister on his hand that he says when covered with a bandage, led the telecasters to think they were seeing sandpaper.