Murphy encouraged by Padres' heart with late rally

Six-run eighth inning not enough to erase early 7-run deficit vs. Giants

Murphy encouraged by Padres' heart with late rally

SAN FRANCISCO -- For six innings on a sun-kissed afternoon at AT&T Park on Thursday, the Padres' offense had all of three hits and whole lot of frustration to show for their efforts.

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But, my, how quickly things can change.

The Padres scored eight runs in the seventh and eighth innings, pulling to within one run before the Giants tacked on four runs in the bottom of the eight for a 13-8 victory in the series finale.

That spirited comeback -- two runs in the seventh and six more in the eighth -- showed something to Padres interim manager Pat Murphy, who is 3-6 since taking over last week.

The team is scuffling, there's no denying that, he said. But Murphy can't help but feel there's more in there -- more hits, more runs and, ultimately, more victories.

"There are no moral victories," Murphy said. "[But] I still see goodness. I see good players, guys getting better, even the guys who are slumping, I see flashes."

The Padres weren't having much luck against Giants pitcher Chris Heston -- he of no-hit fame earlier this month -- and his two-seam fastball, but that changed as the game wore on.

They got to Heston for two runs in the seventh on an RBI triple by Will Middlebrooks and then an RBI single by Alexi Amarista.

Middlebrooks' RBI triple

But the fun really started in the eighth inning, as the Padres sent 11 batters to the plate. Those six runs tied for the most in one inning in 2015 for the team. The other time it occurred was May 1 during a 14-3 victory over the Rockies.

In that eighth inning, Yangervis Solarte actually had two hits, including a double to get things going against the first of three relievers in the inning, Jeremy Affeldt.

Matt Kemp, batting leadoff for the second time in as many days, drilled a two-run home run to deep center field. Clint Barmes, Yonder Alonso, Amarista and Brett Wallace had hits during the inning. Barmes, Solarte and Wallace all logged pinch-hits.

Amarista's RBI single to left

The Padres cut the Giants lead to 9-8 on Solarte's second hit of the inning, a single to center but Sergio Romo -- the third pitcher of the inning -- got Barmes to pop out to first baseman Brandon Belt in foul territory to secure the lead.

"We got back in the game, we fought back and that shows the character of our team. We don't give up. We just came up short," said Kemp. "It shows we've still got a lot of fight in us. Hopefully we can take that back home and do something with it."

The Padres open a three-game series at home against the D-backs on Friday before hitting the road for 10 games before the All-Star break.

"There are bits and pieces coming out of this game that will help us," Murphy said. "I believe we'll get it right."

Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.