KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A bad night in which starter Matt Moore left with elbow soreness got worse for the Rays as they lost 4-2 to the Royals.
The primary problem was a lack of offense, as they were shut down, and shut out into the ninth, by Kansas City left-hander Jason Vargas.
"It was just one of those nights," manager Joe Maddon said. "Unlucky offensively."
The loss was the Rays' fourth in the first eight games of the season. In those four losses, they have scored a total of four runs and are just 2-for-33 with runners in scoring position.
They also lost their first replay challenge, Maddon questioning an out call on Wil Myers that ended the eighth.
Monday, which marked their seventh consecutive loss at picturesque Kauffman Stadium, didn't start well.
Royals leadoff man Nori Aoki tripled over the head of shallow-playing leftfielder Sean Rodriguez and scored on a one-out single. Moore left in the fifth with his elbow soreness, and the Royals expanded the lead to 4-0 in the sixth, loading the bases on three singles then clearing them on a double by Alcides Escobar off Heath Bell.
The Rays got their runs in the ninth, Ben Zobrist hitting a leadoff homer then Matt Joyce singling in Logan Forsythe.
Moore wasn't the only player to leave injured. Kansas City second baseman Omar Infante was staggered and bloodied after being struck in the jaw by a Bell sinker that got away in the seventh and had to be helped off. He received stitches and was being tested for both a broken jaw and a concussion.
"I felt pretty good tonight; I made two mistakes," Bell said. "My prayers go out to him. … I know he feels bad, but I feel worse."