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In-Progress: Astros Head To South Florida To Kick Off Series With Fish

Miami, FL (Sports Network) - Anibal Sanchez allowed three hits over seven shutout innings, and the Marlinspicked apart the Houston Astros, 9-0, in the opener of a three-game series.

Dan Uggla delivered a two-run single and Emilio Bonifacio ended with two RBI for the Marlins, who won their fourth straight contest. Cody Ross and Hector Luna hit back-to-back homers off Fernando Abad in the eighth inning.

Sanchez (10-8) walked a batter and fanned five and even singled in a run during Florida's four-run seventh inning. He's 3-0 with a 0.70 ERA lifetime against Houston.

"That's my goal, making more than 10 wins each year," said Sanchez, who reached the double-digit victory plateau for the first time since his rookie season in 2006. "The only reason is because I'm healthy."

Earlier in the day, Marlins catcher Ronny Paulino received a 50-game suspension for violating Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. The team placed Paulino on the restricted list.

J.A. Happ (3-2) yielded five hits and three runs over six innings for Houston, which has lost nine of its last 10 in Miami. Jeff Fulchino was touched for four hits and as many runs in two-thirds of an inning.

Hanley Ramirez doubled to begin the bottom of the first, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on Bonifacio's sacrifice fly to right.

Good defense also played a part in Florida's strong start. Chris Johnson doubled with one out in the second and then tried to score on Tommy Manzella's single to left. Johnson, though, was thrown out at the plate.

Happ settled in and retired 10 straight batters before a 37-minute rain delay in the sixth inning. He then fanned Sanchez to start the bottom of the sixth, but walked Ramirez. Bonifacio singled and Gaby Sanchez walked to load the bases for Uggla, who nearly hit a grand slam, but the ball sailed just foul to left field. He then blooped a single down the right field line for a 3-0 lead.

"You're setting yourself up for bad things to happen when you walk two guys in one inning," Happ said. "All of a sudden we're at three. It was definitely frustrating."

Anibal Sanchez, Ramirez and Bonifacio each had RBI singles off Fulchino in the seventh. Gaby Sanchez then hit a run-scoring double off Tim Byrdak.

Ross homered for the 11th time this season Luna for the first with one out in the eighth.

The Marlins recalled catcher Brad Davis from Triple-A New Orleans to take Paulino's spot on the roster...Uggla has a 12-game hitting streak...This was the start of a 10-game road trip for the Astros, who are 21-35 outside Houston...Anibal Sanchez snapped an 0-for-22 slide at the plate.

Images by eflon used in background images under a Creative Commons license. Thank you.