KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Soft-tossing left-hander Bruce Chen baffled the White Sox with 6 2/3 scoreless innings to outduel Chris Sale, Alex Gordon hit a two-run double that left fielder Dayan Viciedo couldn't track down, and the Kansas City Royals held on for a 3-0 victory on Wednesday night.
With the Detroit Tigers' win against the Oakland A's, their second in a row since losing to the Sox on Monday, the Sox (81-67) lead in the American League Central was cut to two games with 14 to play.
With ace Sale (17-7) on the mound, the Sox liked their chances of extending their winning streak to six, but Chen (11-12 with the win), who came into the game with a 5.42 ERA but owned a career 3.42 ERA against the Sox, held the Sox to five hits.
Sale allowed eight hits, walked two (one intentional) and struck out eight.
Billy Butler drove in a run with a sacrifice fly and Gordon drove in two with the double that knocked Sale out of the game in the seventh. Sale, working out of trouble in all but two innings, would have escaped one last time if Viciedo would have been able to catch Gordon's drive to the warning track. Viciedo got to the right spot but couldn't corral what looked like a makeable catch, and the Royals led 3-0.
Alejandro De Aza had four hits, a career high, including a triple.
Greg Holland pitched a scoreless ninth for his 14th save. The Royals have defeated the Sox 11 times in 17 meetings this season.