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Astros Hope To Stop The Bleeding, Turn To Bud Norris Tonight Against Marlins

(Sports Network) - Veteran right-hander Javier Vazquez makes his second start in a Florida uniform tonight when the Marlins continue a three-game weekend series with the host Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park.

Vazquez, who's pitched for Montreal, the New York Yankees (twice), Arizona, the Chicago White Sox and Atlanta in a 13-year major-league career, joined the Marlins in the offseason when he signed a one-year, $7 million free-agent contract.

The 34-year-old won 15 games for the Braves in 2009 and went 10-10 in 31 appearances last season in his second stint with the Yankees.

He began his tenure with the Marlins on a sour note on April 3, allowing six hits and seven runs - with five walks - in just 2 1/3 innings of a 9-2 loss in Miami.

He's made 14 lifetime starts against the Astros and is 4-5 with a 4.37 earned run average in 90 2/3 innings with 24 walks and 80 strikeouts.

Houston sends 26-year-old righty Bud Norris to the mound, also for his second start of 2011.

In his season debut on April 3 at Philadelphia, Norris was touched for six hits and five runs in four innings of a 7-3 loss while walking one and striking out seven along the way.

The California native was 6-3 in 11 starts in his initial trip to the majors in 2009, then went 9-10 in 27 starts as a full-timer last season.

He's faced Florida three times in 39 career outings, going 1-1 with a 6.89 ERA across 15 2/3 innings while walking four batters and striking out 15.

In Friday's series opener, Ricky Nolasco worked eight innings and Chris Coghlan's ninth-inning solo home run was the difference as Florida got past Houston, 4-3.

Coghlan knocked in two runs, while Logan Morrison added three hits and an RBI for the Marlins, who have won three of four and overcame the loss of shortstop Hanley Ramirez to a left leg contusion.

Nolasco (1-0) allowed eight hits and two runs with two strikeouts and Leo Nunez worked around a Brett Wallace homer in the bottom of the ninth to pick up his second save.

Wallace went 3-for-4 and scored twice for the Astros, who couldn't come up with a victory in their home opener.

Wilton Lopez (0-1) took the loss and blown save, charged with two runs and four hits in the eighth inning.

Florida split its six meetings with the Astros.

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