Whenever Chris Sale pitches the White Sox think they have a pretty good chance to win.

But this season the team’s level of execution is significantly better.

Sale had just enough to get through a few trying times on Monday night and his offense and defense chipped in too in a 3-1 White Sox victory over the Kansas City Royals at U.S. Cellular Field.

Sale pitched seven strong innings and took advantage of early run support against Royals starter Jeremy Guthrie as the White Sox improved to 3-1 on the homestand. The White Sox are 10-5 when Sale pitches this season after they went 14-16 in 2013.

“All the good teams have a legitimate ace and not only are they good, but once every five days you have a really good chance to win and that’s the kind of pitcher he is,” said White Sox designated hitter Adam Dunn, who played a part in all three runs scored. “We feel like if we can get Chris some early runs we’re going to like our chances.”

These kinds of efforts rarely seemed to land on the days when Sale threw in 2013.

Despite a 3.07 ERA, he finished with an 11-14 mark.