ST. PETERSBURG -- Josh Paul's arbitration case was heard on Friday and the arbitrator ruled in favor of the Devil Rays.

A reserve catcher for the Rays in 2006, Paul, 31, asked for a $940,000 contract while the Rays offered $625,000 -- which is what Paul will be paid in 2007.

Paul once again will compete for the Rays' backup catching spot in 2007. He appeared in a career-high 58 games in 2006 and hit .260 with one home run and eight RBIs in 146 at-bats. He made 47 starts, all at catcher, and threw out nine of 43 potential basestealers.