It was a tale of two hits, two hits that might make a big difference in the Phillies' season.
One traveled a mere 40 feet and came to rest an inch or so from the third-base line.
The other rocketed through the air and covered an estimated 396 feet before landing amid the delirious denizens of the left-field seats.
Both hits, the dink and the drive, helped the Phillies pull off what might have been the win of the season last night at Citizens Bank Park, a 4-2 come-from-behind victory over the National League East-leading New York Mets.
The Phillies won it in the bottom of the 10th on Ryan Howard's 35th homer, a two-run shot to the opposite field.
"When he hit it, everyone in the dugout just went nuts," said Brett Myers, who picked up the win with two scoreless innings of relief. "It's amazing. This team has a lot of heart. We keep fighting until the last out."
Howard, who was greeted at home plate by his celebrating teammates, was also pretty excited about the homer. As the ball sailed through the air, he took a few strides out of the batter's box, turned to the dugout, and shouted in triumph.
"It was definitely huge," Howard said of the game-winning homer, which came on a 1-2 fastball from Guillermo Mota. "More so for the team and the way we fought in this game. It was just a great game."
The victory pulled the Phils to within four games of the Mets in the NL East with two games left in the series. The Phils have won the first two.
"Our goal is to win the series, and we need to do that," Howard said.
Mets lefty Tom Glavine, who became baseball's 23d 300-game winner earlier this month, blanked the Phils for seven innings and left with a 2-0 lead.
When Glavine exited, the Phils' bats came alive in the eighth. Jimmy Rollins turned the momentum with a solo homer off Pedro Feliciano. Pat Burrell walked with one out and was replaced by pinch-runner Shane Victorino, who stole second and went to third when catcher Paul Lo Duca's throw went into center field.
With two outs, Aaron Rowand batted against Aaron Heilman. Rowand hit a nubber up the third-base line. The ball played footsie with the line and eventually stopped in fair territory, 40 feet from home plate. As Mets players waited to see if the ball would be fair or foul, Victorino scampered home with the tying run and Rowand, standing at first, blew him a kiss.
The Phils had a chance to go ahead in that inning, but left the bases loaded when Chris Coste grounded back to the pitcher.
Victorino started the decisive 10th with a single. Howard said he was just trying to get Victorino to third. He did better than that.
Phillies videographer Dan "Video" Stephenson sensed the big moment and was in the dugout when Howard came up in the 10th. He got it all on film.
"I called it," Myers said. "I told Video, 'Here it comes, opposite field.' "
Myers wasn't the only Phillies reliever to deliver. J.C. Romero struck out dangerous Carlos Delgado with two runners on base to end the top of the eighth inning, keeping it a two-run game.
Geoff Geary also pitched 11/3 scoreless innings in relief of Adam Eaton, who handled himself well in his first game after missing two weeks with a tender shoulder.
Eaton, who entered the game with a 6.36 ERA, the highest in the major leagues, held the Mets to two runs in 52/3 innings.
"He did what we wanted him to do," manager Charlie Manuel said. "I thought he did pretty good."
The start was important for Eaton on two fronts: First, there was the playoff chase. Second, his spot in the rotation is in jeopardy with Cole Hamels due off the disabled list and J.D. Durbin pitching well.
Last night, the Phils weren't thinking about what happens to Eaton in the coming days. They just needed him to keep them in the game until the dink and the drive helped them win.