MINNEAPOLIS -- Mark Redman used a new pitch to beat his old team.
Redman (8-8), drafted 13th overall by the Twins in 1995, went 15-13 with Minnesota from 1999-2001. Since being traded by the Twins to Detroit five years ago, Redman was 0-3 with a 6.00 ERA in eight starts against Minnesota.
The difference this time was a cutter he has been working on for about four weeks with pitching coach Bob McClure. Redman said 60 percent of his pitches were cutters.
"The last start I threw it one time and the start before that I probably threw it about 20 times," he said. "When I'm pitching fastball-changeup they're beating me. My objective today was to use the cutter and not walk anyone."
Entering the game he was 0-2 with a 7.77 ERA in five August starts.
"I want to turn the page," he said.
Minnesota, which lost its second in a row and third in eight games, is now a half-game behind Chicago in the wild-card race. With the loss, the Twins are now 5½ games behind Detroit in the AL Central. The White Sox beat Tampa Bay 11-8, and the Tigers were rained out in New York.
Minnesota's Matt Garza (1-3) was almost as good as Redman.
In his fourth major league start, he allowed five hits and two earned runs in 7 2/3 innings, striking out a career-high seven and walking one. Garza, who gave up 10 runs in 7 2/3 innings in his previous two home starts, lowered his ERA in the Metrodome from 11.74 to 7.04. He retired 10 of the last 12 batters he faced.
"I felt good about the way I threw. We just ran into some tough luck tonight," Garza said.
Kansas City scored both of its runs in the fifth. Emil Brown and Ryan Shealy both hit one-out singles before catcher John Buck doubled off the center-field wall, driving in Brown. Shealy scored on a groundout by Andres Blanco.
"It was a fastball over the plate and I just put a good swing on it, and luckily Torii (Hunter) didn't catch it," Buck said. "He'll track down some of those so I wasn't too confident until I saw it hit the fence."
Kansas City has won nine of its past 13 games against first- or second-place teams.
"You should always be playing for something," manager Buddy Bell said. "A lot of guys in this clubhouse are playing just to survive in the big leagues. In a lot of ways that's a heck of a lot more pressure than guys even fighting for a pennant."
Redman, who threw all eight innings in a 1-0 loss at Boston on July 19, won for the first time since July 25. It was his second career complete game shutout. The other was on May 14, 2005.
"The cutter just opened up the whole plate for him and made his changeup a little more effective and his breaking ball a little more effective," Buck said. "Because he was pounding them inside with the cutter and changing speeds so well they couldn't look out over the plate, and when he did miss over the plate they missed a couple."
Shut out for the 12th time this year, Minnesota had leadoff singles in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings but couldn't get a run across.
"When he hits spots with his offspeed, you can't hit that," said Hunter, who went 1-for-3.
Kansas City had an opportunity to take an earlier lead.
Brown doubled with one out in the second inning, but was thrown out by Michael Cuddyer trying to advance to third on a fly out by Shealy. It was Cuddyer's 10th outfield assist, tying him with Carl Crawford for second-best in the league behind New York's Melky Cabrera.
Team doctors examined Minnesota rookie LHP Francisco Liriano on Tuesday and said everything looks good in his rehabilitation. On the disabled list since Aug. 8 with a strained ligament in his left elbow, Liriano (12-3) is scheduled to throw a bullpen session Wednesday in tennis shoes. ... Blanco started at shortstop for Kansas City in place of Angel Berroa, who has a sore ankle. ... Royals 2B Mark Grudzielanek was 0-for-4, and is 3-for-28 in his last seven games. He was thrown out at first after Minnesota 3B Nick Punto made a diving stop in the sixth inning. ... Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire said Radke is expected to start Saturday in New York. Radke left Friday's game at Chicago after two innings and returned to Minnesota to receive a cortisone injection in his right shoulder. He has been pitching with a torn labrum.