Mark Buehrle knew his streak couldn't last forever. It's too bad for the Chicago White Sox that it ended with the team on the cusp of moving up in the standings.

Fausto Carmona allowed four hits over 8 1-3 innings and the Cleveland Indians beat the White Sox 4-1 on Wednesday night.

Buehrle (10-6) allowed a season-high 12 hits and had his streak of consecutive starts allowing three runs or less snapped at 18 games. Buehrle allowed four runs in 7 1-3 innings.

"I was on a pretty good roll," Buehrle said. "But everything has to come to an end sometime."

Buehrle's streak tied Frank Smith's 1909 franchise record.

The win kept Chicago from passing the Indians and moving into second place in the AL Central, but manager Ozzie Guillen said it was just a matter of Carmona being better than his club.

"He was better than us, there's no doubt," Guillen said. "He was from the beginning of the game all the way to the end. He was dominating, throwing strikes and attacking the strike zone. You can't do much about that."

Alexei Ramirez homered to account for all the offense the White Sox could muster. Alejandro De Aza had two hits.

Gordon Beckham grounded out with two runners on to end the game.

"In the past, we take advantage of Carmona being wild," Guillen said. "That's the best we've seen Carmona in three or four outings against us.

"He was outstanding today. He threw the ball pretty well. His sinker was good. This kid's got good enough stuff when he's on, it's hard to get good at-bats against him."

Chicago remained 3½ games behind the Tigers and dropped 1½ games behind the Indians after first-place Detroit lost 6-5 to Minnesota.

"(Buehrle) pitched well," Guillen said. "A lot of groundballs (went for) base hits, but that's his game. He had another great outing."

After Chicago's 14-inning win over Cleveland on Tuesday, the White Sox needed a long outing from Buehrle and got it.

"He did a great thing for the team, going seven-plus innings when we most needed it," Guillen said. "When you lose a game, obviously you're not happy about it, but he did a very important thing for us. Even when he's bad, he still helps the ballclub."

The White Sox lost for just the second time in nine games against the Indians this season.

"Your goal is to go out there and throw a quality start," Buehrle said. "Three runs, four runs, I think we still would have lost. You have to tip your cap to Carmona. His ball was moving all over the place."

The White Sox tied it in the second on Ramirez's leadoff homer.

Carmona allowed 18 earned runs over eight innings in two earlier starts against Chicago this season. He had won all seven of his career starts against the White Sox coming into this year.

Carmona retired 11 straight hitters until Adam Dunn singled to left against an exaggerated shift with one out in the seventh. He was pulled after walking Carlos Quentin with one out in the ninth and matched his season high with 118 pitches.

Chris Perez got the last two outs for his 26th save.

Buehrle allowed at least one runner in each of the first five innings, but Cleveland bounced into two double plays and left six on base.

"(Buehrle) pitched well," Guillen said. "A lot of groundballs (went for) base hits, but that's his game. He had another great outing."

The Indians got the lead in the sixth when Santana doubled and scored on Kosuke Fukudome's single to center.

The Indians upped the lead to three runs and snapped Buehrle's streak with a two-run seventh. Choo stroked an RBI single and Asdrubal Cabrera drove in a run with a sacrifice fly.

"We battled Buehrle the whole night and fortunately we got those clutch hits," Indians manager Manny Acta said.

The Indians scored the game's first run in the second when Jason Donald doubled and scored on Jack Hannahan's single.

Ultimately, the game came down to Chicago's inability to solve Carmona.

"We've hit him pretty good this year, coming into it," Buehrle said. "He's one of those guys, you look up there and see his numbers and you don't know how his ERA is so high. (He is) throwing 95 and his ball is sinking all over the place. I'll take his stuff any day."

NOTES: The White Sox have vacillated between a five- and six-man rotation for most of the season, but Guillen said rookie starter Zach Stewart will pitch out of the bullpen for the next few days, leaving the team with five starters for the time being. Guillen said he's unsure when Stewart will start again. Indians rookie 2B Jason Kipnis missed his third straight game because of soreness in his right side. Acta said Kipnis took "heavy batting practice" on Wednesday and will return to the lineup Thursday. .. The Indians and White Sox play the series finale on Thursday. Cleveland's Justin Masterson has a 1.99 ERA over his last 11 appearances, while Chicago's Phil Humber is 0-4 with a 7.52 ERA over his last five starts. Chicago 1B Paul Konerko had a 12-game hitting streak snapped. Stewart made his first career relief appearance after five starts and struck out a career-best five in 1 2-3 innings.