Giants complete four-game sweep vs. struggling Padres

SAN DIEGO (AP) -- In another indictment against the state of the NL West, the last-place San Francisco Giants have just about played themselves back into postseason contention.

Rookie Kevin Frandsen hit his first homer, a two-run shot, and Pedro Feliz also connected to lead the Giants to an 8-4 win over the sputtering San Diego Padres on Thursday and a four-game sweep.

Remarkably, the Giants are only four games behind Cincinnati in the wild-card race, and that's after losing 16 of 19 coming into this series.

Reliever Kevin Correia thinks the Giants can get back into playoff contention "if we can play like we did this series."

The Giants return home for a 10-game stretch that includes three against the first-place Los Angeles Dodgers, three against the second-place Diamondbacks and four against wild-card leader Cincinnati.

"We're playing all the right teams coming up to get back in it," Correia said. "So it's basically in our hands. If we can win some games, we can get right back in it."

San Francisco took a combined two-hitter into the ninth before Correia loaded the bases on two singles and a hit batsman. Jack Taschner then allowed rookie Josh Barfield's pinch-hit grand slam.

The Giants have beaten the Padres nine times in 10 games since July 1. San Diego has lost eight of 10 overall, a slump that has dropped the defending NL West champion from the division lead to third place. The Padres (60-61) fell below .500 for the first time since May 6.

"There's no getting around it -- we were awful this series," Padres manager Bruce Bochy said. "I was, the club, all of us. We just had a horrible series. We have to wash this off, regroup and get things going."

Frandsen hit a two-run shot in the ninth to finish with three hits. Feliz's homer, his 20th, was also in the ninth, giving him three RBI.

"For someone who doesn't hit too many, I'm just excited that it came at the time it did," Frandsen said. "This should not overshadow coming in here and getting a great road sweep."

Padres ace Jake Peavy (6-12) set a career high with his 12th loss. The right-hander is having an uncharacteristically poor season after leading the majors with a 2.27 ERA in 2004 and the NL with 216 strikeouts last year. Peavy's only other double-digit loss season was 12-11 in 2003, his first full year in the big leagues.

"It's up to us to have short memories and forget this series," Peavy said.

Giants rookie Matt Cain (9-9) retired the first two Padres batters in the first and then walked the bases full. Ben Johnson, who homered twice in Wednesday night's 13-inning loss, worked the count full before striking out.

Cain threw 36 pitches in the first inning and was pulled after throwing his 104th, which Josh Bard lobbed into medium right field for a single with one out in the sixth. Manager Felipe Alou came out to get Cain, who is 2-0 in four starts against San Diego this year.

Cain allowed one hit, struck out eight and walked six in 5 1/3 innings.

Correia allowed three singles and three runs in 3 1/3 innings. He also hit a single.

The Padres struck out 12 times. They fanned 13 times Wednesday night.

Feliz homered to center with one out in the ninth and Frandsen to left with two outs, both off Scott Williamson.

Shea Hillenbrand drove in two runs for the Giants.

Frandsen opened the game with a double to center and scored on Hillenbrand's groundout.

With one out in the fourth, the Giants loaded the bases on Hillenbrand's walk, Moises Alou's double to left and Mark Sweeney's walk. Feliz singled to center to score Hillenbrand and Alou.

Hillenbrand and Finley had RBI singles in the eighth off Jon Adkins.

Peavy allowed three runs and three hits in seven innings, struck out eight and walked two.

Game notes
The Padres turned a 4-9 play to retire Hillenbrand in the sixth. Second baseman Todd Walker tracked Hillenbrand's fly ball into right field and the ball bounced off his glove. He then tipped it with his glove toward right fielder Brian Giles, who tipped it with his bare hand before making the catch. ... Barry Bonds was going to get the day off even before he left Wednesday night's game with an inflamed left elbow.