There was a chance Hunter Pence was not going to be in the lineup Tuesday night because of a bum shoulder. Loyal Daily News reader Frank Graf is sure glad the Phillies rightfielder toughed it out.
Pence slammed a fourth-inning homer to make Graf a $1,000 winner in the Daily News Home Run Payoff contest.
"I didn't think he was going to play," Graf said. "I guess I could thank him for that thousand dollars."
Graf, of Bensalem, works for Enterprise Rent-A-Car and said he's going to use the money for an upcoming road trip when the Phillies play in Baltimore. Graf and his three grandkids, Patrick, Connor and Jack Graf, will be at Camden Yards for the June 8 game.
Three batters later, the Daily News gave out another $1,000 when Laynce Nix homered for David Furstein, of Philadelphia. We were unable to reach Furstein, who became the third money winner this year and 560th since Home Run Payoff debuted in 1973.
Six readers won Phillies Gift Packs on Tuesday:
Ruth Ross, Philadelphia
Valerie Cattai, Philadelphia
Tom McDonald, Philadelphia
Sally Barber, Spring City
Michael Gammon, Lansdowne
John Bonaccorsi, Warminster
Those winning gift packs in the third inning Monday were:
Ernest Evans, Philadelphia
Deloris Erwin, Philadelphia
Chris Coghill, Bear, Del.
Brian Cross, Philadelphia
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.
To date, the Daily News has paid out $3,000. You can find a complete list of this year's Home Run Payoff winners at www.philly.com/payoff2012.
You can hear the Home Run Payoff inning during each Phillies broadcast on WPHT (1210-AM) and WIP (94.1-FM).