KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Tampa Bay would have preferred more snow.
Instead, with temperatures Monday soaring into the mid-90s, the Royals roughed up the visiting Rays 11-1 in the makeup game for the May 2 “snowout.”
It was a particularly forgettable day for former Royals farmhand Wil Myers, who was the main piece in the trade that netted ace James Shields.
Appearing for the first time as a big-leaguer at Kauffman Stadium, Myers went 0 for 4 with two strikeouts. He also misplayed a ball off the wall in right field.
“We got crushed, so it was tough,” said Myers, whose average dipped below .300.
Fortunately for him, not many people were on hand to see it. Fewer than 5,000 people clicked through the turnstiles, though the official attendance (20,546) was much higher and included tickets sold for the original date.
The fans who did make it out to Kauffman Stadium undoubtedly enjoyed the romp as the Royals won a second straight game after snapping a seven-game skid Sunday.
“The offense looks to me like it’s back on track,” manager Ned Yost said.
The Royals pounded out 13 hits, including three apiece from Billy Butler and Emilio Bonifacio. They and have scored 29 runs in the last four games after managing only 21 runs in the previous 10.
Rays starter Jeremy Hellickson threw strikes — 46 of them among his 68 pitches — but he didn’t even survive three innings, because he struggled to finish off the pesky Royals’ hitters.
“They kept getting to the next pitch, then they found their hole,” Rays manager Joe Maddon said. “That was good hitting on their part, but also speaks to that there is something just a little bit off with Helly.”
Leadoff hitter Alex Gordon set the tone by looping a check-swing blooper into shallow left field on the ninth pitch of the at-bat. He later scored on Billy Butler’s RBI single as the Royals raced an early lead.
Two innings later, Butler — who reached base five times and drove in three runs, including a moonshot solo home run in the eighth — added another RBI single on a blooper to right during a four-run frame.
Mike Moustakas roped an RBI double into right field, while Salvy Perez’s sacrifice fly and Justin Maxwell’s RBI single pushed the lead to 5-0.
Hellickson was done after allowing five runs on seven hits in 2 2/3 innings.
“(Hellickson) was able to get ahead of a couple guys, but we put some balls in play and got some hits off of him,” Moustakas said.
Tampa Bay, which hosted the Yankees on Sunday and now returns to Florida for a three-game series with the Angels before heading to Oakland on Thursday, pulled a run back in the fourth on James Loney’s one-out RBI single.
The Rays eventually loaded the bases with two outs in the inning, but Royals right-hander Guthrie shut down the threat by striking out former Royal David DeJesus looking.
“The last couple games, the offense has done a great job getting us a lead and as pitchers we haven’t done our part holding that up,” Guthrie said. “That crossed my mind, especially with my tough outing last time when I gave up the five-run inning. I wanted to protect the lead and gain the trust back of these hitters.”
Maddon was ejected arguing the strikeout, so he wasn’t around when the Royals blew the game open even wider with a five-run sixth.
Gordon drove in speedy Jarrod Dyson with a triple off the wall in right field, which skittered under Myers’ glove on the carom.
Moustakas added an RBI single before Perez capped the outburst with a three-run rocket into the Royals’ bullpen — his seventh home run of the season and second in as many days.
Guthrie (13-10) lasted five innings, scattering six hits and three walks with five strikeouts.
Tim Collins, Louis Coleman and Aaron Crow combined for four shutout innings in relief.