What a perfect time for Marion Teacle Jr. to have Ryan Howard emerge from a funk.
Last night, when Howard belted his second home run of the night in an eight-run sixth inning, Teacle Jr., of Philadelphia, became $1,000 richer in the Daily News Home Run Payoff contest.
"He [Howard] is pretty good, but I like him a hell of a lot more now," said Teacle Jr., 57.
With a June 11 birthday upcoming, Teacle said he will use his winnings to pay a few bills and then, "Have a nice time on my birthday and maybe even get a little drunk."
There were 12 other winners in the Daily News Home Run Payoff contest last night. Each winning a Phillies gift pack in the sixth inning were:
Leo Sierzega, Phoenixville
Johnnie Walker, Villas, N.J.
Sandra Smith, Folsom
Michelle Cozzalio, Philadelphia
Mary Stringfellow, Philadelphia
Harry Milakeve, Willow Grove
Lisa Stitz, Philadelphia
Mike Cartor, Havertown
Bill Kurz, Sellersville
Charles Castorina, Philadelphia
Frances Jurewicz, Sugarloaf, Pa.
Heriberto Jimenez, Vineland, N.J.
The Daily News pays $1,000 for a home run hit in the Payoff inning and $10,000 for a grand slam. Contestants whose batters fail to hit a home run receive a gift pack, which includes a variety of Phillies-related items.
This season, the Daily News has paid out $5,000.
You can hear the Home Run Payoff inning during each Phillies broadcast on WPHT (1210-AM).