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Missouri State Baseball Alum Howard Begins World Series Tonight



Missouri State baseball alum Ryan Howard leads the Philadelphia Phillies in defense of their 2008 World Series title tonight at 6:57 p.m. against the New York Yankees. Howard, who played at Missouri State from 1999-2001, is the only remaining former Bear in the postseason, as Matt Palmer (2001-02) and the Los Angeles Angels were bounced by New York in the American League Championship Series.

    Howard and Palmer made Missouri State a member of an exclusive club as only four schools nationally had two alums participating in league championship series. Aside from Missouri State, Northwestern (J.A. Happ and Mark Loretta), Oklahoma (Greg Dobbs and Reggie Willits) and UCLA (Chase Utley and Ben Francisco) sent two alums to LCS match-ups.

    So far this postseason, Howard is batting .355 with 14 RBIs and seven extra-base hits. On Oct. 18, he set an MLB playoff record (for one season) with an RBI in his seventh consecutive postseason game. The next day, Howard's two-run homer in the first inning against hte Dodgers tied him with Lou Gehrig for most consecutive playoff games with an RBI all-time, including players who carried streaks from one postseason appearance to the next. New York's Alex Rodriguez matched the mark of Gehrig and Howard later in the postseason.

    Howard claimed National League Championship Series MVP honors to add to his long list of accomplishments as a pro, including 2005 NL Rookie of the Year, 2006 NL MVP, 2006 Home Run Derby champion and 2008 World Series champion.

    Palmer made two appearances in the playoffs, pitching 2.2 innings with two strikeouts against New York.



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