Howard Sparks Rout; Phillies Lead Series, 3-1

By M. Morris,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 26, 2008 11:12 PM CDT
Philadelphia Phillies' J.C. Romero reacts after the final out in the ninth inning of Game 4 of the baseball World Series against the Tampa Bay Rays in Philadelphia, Sunday, Oct. 26, 2008. The Phillies...   (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
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(Newser) – Ryan Howard homered twice and drove in five runs, and the Phillies beat the Tampa Bay Rays, 10-2, in Game 4 of the World Series tonight in Philadelphia. The Fightin' Phils are one victory away from capturing the second World Series title in franchise history. They wouldn't be here without their big slugger. "We just have to stay focused and hopefully come out with that 'W,'" Howard said.

With the Phillies leading 2-1 in the fourth and stranding runners at an alarming rate, Howard drove Andy Sonnanstine's 2-1 pitch into the left-field seats to put the Phillies ahead, 5-1. Howard knew it was gone when he made contact and paused to admire the shot before circling the bases. The towel-waving crowd roared, demanding a curtain call. If that wasn't enough, Howard went deep again in the eighth.