- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 7, 2014

SAN DIEGO (AP) - All of the San Diego Padres‘ woes were revealed in an 8-0 loss to Kansas City on Wednesday.

The hitting was sporadic. The defense was shoddy. The pitching erratic. The baserunning poor.

The Padres lost for the sixth time in eight games, shut down by James Shields and a pair of relievers.

“When you’re not scoring runs, miscues in the field are magnified,” manager Bud Black said after the Padres were shut out for a major league-high sixth time.

Andrew Cashner (2-5) had a rocky first inning but it wasn’t all his fault. He lasted a season-low four innings, hurt by the shaky play of shortstop Everth Cabrera.

Cabrera misplayed two grounders in the opening inning, which led to the Royals taking a 3-0 lead. The rout was on, and with Cashner throwing 43 first-inning pitches, he wouldn’t be long for this Petco Park matinee.

“We didn’t help Cash at all in the first inning,” Black said. “It elevated his pitch count and he had to work hard to get through that first inning and from there he had to battle to get through his innings. He was behind the eight ball right from the start.”

On the other side, the Royals were doing little wrong.

Shields (4-3) scattered seven hits over seven innings, Eric Hosmer drove in a season-high four runs and the Royals won their first series in San Diego.

Shields, who struck out four and walked two, won his fourth straight road start of the season. Since 2013, he is 14-4 in 24 road starts with a 2.00 ERA.

“Any time you got James Shields on the mound and you can strike first and give him a little breathing room, a little leeway, it is a nice thing to have,” Royals manager Ned Yost said.

Cashner (2-5)was again derailed by an anemic offense and weak defense.

Alcides Escobar reached in the first when Cabrera misplayed his groundball after Nori Aoki opened with a single. Hosmer hit a two-run single, Alex Gordon reached base two batters later when Cabrera mishandled his grounder and Danny Valencia followed with a broken-bat, RBI single.

“We’re kind of struggling right now,” Cabrera said. “We’ve lost too many games.”

Cashner ended the inning by getting Shields to ground out with the bases loaded in a nine-pitch at-bat.

The Padres had a chance to cut into their deficit in the second when they got three hits. But Cameron Maybin was too aggressive rounding second base on an infield single, and Escobar slid in behind from shortstop, took Hosmer’s throw from first base and made the tag.

Black requested a review, but the call stood. It marked the first time in five appeals this season that Black had lost.

The Padres tied a season high with three errors, and had a passed ball and wild pitch in allowing four unearned runs.

“We’re kind of in a team-wide funk,” Cashner said. “But things will turn. It’s a long season.”

NOTES: Padres 3B Chase Headley (strained right calf) will play for Single-A Lake Elsinore on Thursday and Friday. He could be activated for Saturday’s game against the Marlins. … Padres OF Carlos Quentin is with Triple-A El Paso for at least two games and then will be re-evaluated. Quentin has been on the DL all season with knee problems. … The Padres open a four-game series with the Marlins on Thursday with RHP Ian Kennedy (2-4, 3.43) facing RHP Jacob Turner (0-0, 9.90).

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