PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Bryce Harper broke up the Phillies’ postseason party on the mound and instructed his team that the real fun was about to begin for the National League champions.

“Come on, let’s go in! Come on!” he ordered.

With that, Harper walked to the dugout in his backwards cap and raised his arms in jubilation to a soundtrack of Phillies fans yelling “MV3! MV3!” The Phillies soon rolled in for the boozy bash that awaited in the clubhouse.

Harper made the scene possible as he reached the moment Philly demanded of him from the moment he signed the richest free agent contract in baseball history. Harper has made the monumental feat of hitting a baseball in the postseason look so easy, and with the NL pen at stake, he easily accomplished the defining moment of his four-year Philadelphia career.

Harper slugged his fifth homer of the postseason, a two-run eighth-inning blast that turned Citizens Bank Park into a frenzy, and the $330 million slugger beat the San Diego Padres 4-3 on Sunday. First appearance in the World Series since 2009.

A swing An opposite field shot. A game-winning home run that seemed destined from the moment he came to the plate in the eighth inning with the Phillies and their fans beckoning Bryce to deliver in the clutch just one more time.

“I hit the ball, and I just looked at my dugout and that’s it for all of them,” Harper said. “It’s for this whole team. It’s for this whole organization.”

Rhys Hoskins also hit a two-run homer in Game 5 of the NL Championship Series to spark Philadelphia’s improbable run to its first World Series championship since 2008.

Bryce Harper #3 of the Philadelphia Phillies reacts after hitting an RBI double in the fifth inning of Game 4 of the NLCS between the San Diego Padres and the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on Saturday, October 22, 2022 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. What did

Daniel Sherry via Getty Images

Harper, Hoskins and Crews are coming off a highly improbable World Series championship.

Houston took a 3-0 lead over the New York Yankees in the ALCS. Game 4 is Sunday night in New York. The World Series begins Friday night at the home of the AL champion.

Harper was named the NLCS MVP, and he made it clear he wanted more as he placed the trophy on a dice.

“I don’t really care but MLB is making me do it,” Harper said.

Philadelphia trailed 3-2 when JT Realmuto led off the eighth with a single off reliever Robert Suarez. Harper then hit a 2-2, 98-mph double into the left-field seats as another sellout crowd of 45,485 rocked the stadium.

Harper hoped the homer would set the stage for other highlights on deck over the next two weeks.

“We’ve got four more,” Harper told fans on the field during the celebration, and they roared again.

Harper, swinging to left, singled out the righty — the Padres had warmed up left-hander Josh Hader in the bullpen, but they didn’t bring him in.

“It’s a thought right now, but it wasn’t what we were thinking,” Padres manager Bob Malone said. “We were trying to get a four-out position for Heather, and we had a lot of confidence in Suarez.”

The Phillies felt the same way about Harper.

“Pure chaos, right? I don’t think anyone was surprised,” Hoskins said. “This guy has a knack for coming up in the biggest moments. That’s just what he’s done his whole career, and we’ve seen it a lot.

Also remember: When Harper’s thumb was broken by a pitch from San Diego’s Blake Snell in late June, there were some concerns he might not return this season.

Instead, the star — who signed a 13-year deal to play in Philadelphia — delivered in that game, this season.

“I think we always believed,” Harper said.

Even after Harper’s homer put them ahead, it wasn’t an easy end for the Phillies.

Reliever David Robertson was pulled in the ninth after a pair of one-out walks. Ranger Suarez made his first relief appearance of the season and retired Trent Grisham on a bunt and Austin Nola — brother of Phillies S Aaron Nola — finished him off on a routine flyout for a huge save.

Then it was party time. Philly Fnatic raised the flag of the National League champions as the postseason banner “Dancing on My Own” played throughout the stadium. Alec Boehm and Nick Castellanos took off their shirts and danced in the clubhouse. Cigars were left. Cheap beer was sprayed. Puddles of alcohol on the carpet rivaled those caused by rain on a sloppy, fast Game 5.

These sixth-seeded Phillies — yes, that’s a thing this season — feel like they’re just getting started.

Harper, who turned 30 last week, is batting .439 (18-for-41) with six doubles, five homers, 11 RBI and 10 runs scored in 11 postseason games. He has hit in 10 straight and reached base in 11 straight.

And the feared designated hitter could keep those streaks alive as he plays in his first World Series.

“To a certain extent, it’s being overlooked because of who he is and the star he is,” Phillies manager Rob Thompson said. “He’s a guy who’s a big star who has delivered. Can’t say enough about him.”

Philadelphia finished third in the NL East at 87-75, a full 14 games behind the 101-win Braves this season, and was the last club in the majors to make the 12-team playoff field. After beating NL Central champion St. Louis 2-0 in MLB’s newly created Wild Card Round, the Phillies needed just four games to knock off Atlanta, the defending World Series champions.

Now they will try to become the first team to win the World Series after finishing third.

The Padres took a 3-2 lead into a sloppy seventh inning as rain lashed Citizens Bank Park and parts of the infield, particularly around third base, turned into mud puddles.

But it was Phillies reliever Seranthony Dominguez’s slippery grip that cost the Phillies.

Starter Zach Wheeler was fantastic once again, striking out eight over six innings. It was lifted with a 2-1 lead when Jake Cronworth hit a leadoff single in the seventh and tipped his hat as he walked from the mound to a standing ovation.

Dominguez couldn’t get his bearings with the ball as the rain started, puddles formed around third base and the infield dirt turned to mud. He threw a wild pitch and Josh Bell laced an RBI double to right that made it 2-1. Dominguez recovered to strike out the next two batters with pinch runner Jose Azocar at second base.

Azocar moved to third on a wild pitch and came home on Dominguez’s third wild pitch of the inning for a 3-2 lead. The righty reliever threw just three wild pitches in 51 innings all season — then uncorked three in the seventh.

Hoskins, Harper, Wheeler have left a trail of indelible moments at Citizens Bank as they improve to 5-0 at home, where they will play World Series Games 3, 4 and 5.

Game 5 of the NLCS was no exception.

The Phillies got a break when Kyle Schwarber was called out in the third after a two-out stolen base attempt. Schwarber never left the base, adamant that second baseman Croninworth never tagged him. Phillies fans cheered as replays on the big screen repeatedly showed Cronworth making the call on the tag attempt. The call was overturned on replay, and the Phillies found new life.

Hoskins, who came in hitting a fairly memorable .171, smacked one into the left-field seats off starter Yu Darvish as the crowd went wild. As he mouthed a few words to his teammates in the dugout and twirled his bat — unlike the constantly spinning rally towels — as he gave them a 2-0 lead.

Wheeler gave up Soto’s solo homer in the inning that made it 2-1. Padres pitcher Joe Musgrove took a Polaroid photo of Soto in the dugout.

Try as they might, the Padres weren’t ready for their closer.

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