|Sabathia (left) gets a touch from Derek Jeter [GALLO/GETTY]
The New York Yankees were on the brink of their first World Series appearance since 2003 after pitcher CC Sabathia guided his side to a 10-1 victory over the Los Angeles Angels.
The crushing win in California gives the Yankees a commanding 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven American League Championship Series.
Californian Sabathia pitched eight innings and improved to 3-0 in the playoffs.
"We have Hall of Fame players on this team, it's a really good team," Sabathia said, having signed a record deal in the offseason to come to New York from the Milwaukee Brewers.
"I just try to go out there every game and give us a chance to win. I feel really good, hopefully I can keep this going and we can win the whole thing."
The left-hander struck out five and tossed 101 pitches in an overpowering performance on Tuesday aided by an explosive offence that provided all the run support he needed.
Melky Cabrera had three hits and drove in four runs while Alex Rodriguez and Johnny Damon homered for the second time in as many games to help the Yankees to a relatively comfortable win after the last two encounters had ended in extra innings.
Cabrera put the Yankees up 3-0 with a two-RBI single in the fourth and Rodriguez bombed a two-run blast in the fifth.
Los Angeles starter Scott Kazmir left the game in the fifth having allowed four runs. Angels reliever Matt Palmer surrendered four runs in the last two innings.
"You feel like the game is slowing down for you a little bit," said Rodriguez.
"It's been a while, certainly (since I felt this good). I feel liberated. This is the happiest I've been in a while."
A game after coming back from a 3-0 deficit to win in the 11th inning, Los Angeles managed just five hits and one run on Kendry Morales' solo homer in the fifth.
Game Five is on Thursday in Los Angeles where the Angels will put John Lackey on the mound in hopes of extending their season.
The last team to rally from a 3-1 series deficit in a championship series was the Boston Red Sox, who won three in a row to complete a comeback against the Cleveland Indians in 2007.
"We're never going to give up," Kazmir said. "We have too good of a team to do that."