MIAMI -- It initially looked like it would be a rough Saturday night for Anibal Sanchez, and it turned into a memorable one.
The Marlins right-hander labored with his control early on, and he was trailing by two runs to Arizona while throwing 57 pitches through two innings.
But after back-to-back walks to open the second, Sanchez made a remarkable turnaround. He retired 18 straight, and he finished with 14 strikeouts.
Sanchez became just the third Marlins pitcher to reach as many as 14 strikeouts. A.J. Burnett did it twice, and the club record is 16 by Ricky Nolasco.
After the first two innings, Sanchez realized something needed to change.
"I said, I had to do something," he said. "I don't want to leave the game early. I tried to do a few pitches per hitters."
Sanchez's previous career high for strikeouts was 11, done twice last year. He reached the total against Washington on May 8. And he had 11 in a one-hitter over the Pirates on Sept. 10.
"Anibal has been throwing the ball well all year," manager Ozzie Guillen said. "So have his teammates. All five guys we have starting, they have had some quality games. Unfortunately, the team hasn't helped them win games."
Sanchez didn't factor into the decision, but he kept his club in the game for the late-inning rally.
"It was a day where everything didn't start very well, but it ended very well," Sanchez said.
Sanchez is no stranger to success against Arizona. As a rookie in 2006, the right-hander no-hit the D-backs at Sun Life Stadium.
Infante deals with discomfort, returns to lineup
MIAMI -- There's been a change of plans regarding Marlins second baseman Omar Infante.
Initially, manager Ozzie Guillen planned on not starting Infante on Sunday, and possibly Monday.
But after Infante delivered a pinch-hit triple in Saturday's 3-2 comeback win over the D-backs, the veteran second baseman convinced Guillen that he is ready to go.
So Miami's hottest hitter was back in the starting lineup on Sunday.
Infante has been dealing with a sore left groin/hamstring issue for most of the year. On Sunday morning, he clarified what is bothering him, saying it is more his hamstring.
"It's still tight, but I can play," he said. "I think about it a lot, my leg."
Each day for Infante starts with some form of therapy, either massages or icing. He says it grabs on him more when he stops running than when he actually is running.
On the stand-up triple on Saturday, he said his leg was fine. But he grimaced a little when he reached third base.
"I didn't feel it," he said while running. "Only when I stopped."
On a team with a sluggish offense, Infante has been Miami's top hitter. He is batting .327 with five doubles, two triples, five home runs and seven RBIs.
He understands that until the groin is fully healed, he will get some days off.
"I say to Ozzie, 'I don't want to feel sore. I don't want to be on the [disabled list],'" Infante said. "Sometimes we will take it easy. Sometimes I'll play two days in a row, and then rest. I want to be 100 percent. I don't want to play 60 percent, 70 percent. I want to play 100 percent."
Big hit was big relief for Hanley
MIAMI -- There hasn't been much to smile about for the Marlins in the past week.
That changed on Saturday night when Hanley Ramirez delivered his second walk-off hit of the season, an RBI single to left field that lifted the Marlins to a 3-2 win over Arizona.
Along with being the game-winner, the hit was a huge relief for the Miami third baseman, who was mired in a 0-for-26 slump.
Miami is a team that is trying to feed upon energy. But before Saturday, the club had dropped six straight.
Collectively, the team was somber.
"You don't want to be smiling out there, because people are going to think you don't care about the game," Ramirez said. "It's way different when you're winning. Everything is different when you're winning."
Ramirez had gone from April 19 to the ninth inning on Saturday without a hit. The RBI was his first since April 18.
"Everybody is more relaxed right now," the third baseman said. "It's hard when you lose six in a row."
During the slump, Ramirez didn't tweak his swing much, because he had made an adjustment two weeks ago, which helped during his five-game hitting streak.
"It's not like I'd been striking out," he said. "I was putting the ball in play. I just have to continue to show improvement and cut my swing down."