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Yankees grab 3-1 Series lead

PHILADELPHIA — Alex Rodriguez waited all game long for this hit. Heck, he waited his whole life.

Rodriguez delivered the biggest hit of his career, a go-ahead, two-out double in the ninth inning off Brad Lidge and the New York Yankees took advantage of Johnny Damon’s daring dash to beat the Philadelphia Phillies 7-4 on Sunday night for a 3-1 lead in the World Series.

Derek Jeter delivered again and Mariano Rivera closed it out as the Yankees moved within one win of that elusive 27th championship and first since 2000. Rodriguez could really savor this victory — seething after again being hit by a pitch, he struck back with his potent black bat.

The Yankees will try to clinch it Monday night when A.J. Burnett faces October ace Cliff Lee.

“Facing Brad Lidge, he’s a great competitor. He’s had a lot of success late here. Just trying to make contact there,” Rodriguez said.

Chase Utley and Pedro Feliz hit late home runs for the Phillies that tied it at 4. Then it moved to the ninth and Phils brought in Lidge — a postseason star last year, he had struggled all season before regaining his touch this October.

But November was not so kind to him.

Lidge had been the only closer in the playoffs who hadn’t allowed a run until the Yankees tagged him. With two outs, Damon capped a nine-pitch at-bat with a single.