After beating the Toronto Blue Jays with his second complete game of the season, Florida righthander Josh Johnson gave catcher Ronny Paulino all the credit.
Paulino hit two home runs, Johnson pitched a seven-hitter and the visiting Marlins beat the Blue Jays, 11-3, yesterday for a three-game sweep.
"He's the star of the game right there," Johnson said of Paulino, who was with the Phillies in spring training. "I pretty much just follow him. We're always on the same page and, if we're not, he pretty much goes right to what I'm thinking."
The Marlins won their eighth in a row overall at Toronto. The Blue Jays lost their fourth straight and fell to 0-6 in interleague play. They visit the Phillies for a three-game series starting tomorrow.
Paulino went 4-for-5, scoring three runs and driving in three with his first career multihomer game. He hit a two-run drive in the second inning and added a solo shot in the ninth.
Paulino said he is more focused on his duties behind the plate than at the plate, meaning any offensive contributions are a plus.
"When you have a game like that it's a bonus, when you catch and you hit," Paulino said.
Johnson (6-1) gave up seven hits and won his third straight decision. He struck out six and walked three.
"He was very consistent attacking the strike zone and his slider was working pretty well," Paulino said.
This was the third time the Marlins have swept Toronto in a three-game series. They did it in Miami in 2006 and at Toronto in 1997.
Brian Tallet (4-4) allowed eight runs and 10 hits in a season-low 3 1/3 innings. He became the second Blue Jays starter in as many days to not pitch past the fourth, following Casey Janssen, who lasted 3 2/3 innings in Saturday's 6-5 defeat. Tallet called it "a really, really bad day at the office."
In other interleague games:
* At Cleveland, Cliff Lee threw seven innings of no-hit ball before settling for a three-hitter to give the Indians a 3-0 win over the St. Louis Cardinals.
* At New York, Derek Jeter and the Yankees hammered Johan Santana in the worst start of his career, routing the Mets, 15-0, for the biggest blowout in Subway Series history. Jeter went 4-for-4 and the Yankees got two-run homers from Hideki Matsui and Robinson Cano in a nine-run fourth inning, chasing Santana early to take two of three in a testy series at Yankee Stadium.
* At St. Petersburg, Fla., pinch-hitter Willy Aybar got a lucky bounce, doubling off the third-base bag in the eighth inning, and the Tampa Bay Rays completed a sweep of the lowly Washington Nationals with a 5-4 victory.
* At Baltimore, Ty Wigginton hit two home runs, Robert Andino drove in three runs and stole home and Brad Bergesen pitched his first complete game in the Orioles' 11-2 win over Atlanta.
* At San Francisco, Nate Schierholtz hit an inside-the-park three-run homer, Matt Cain pitched a four-hitter for his seventh straight win and the Giants beat the Oakland Athletics, 7-1, for a three-game sweep.
* At Anaheim, Calif., Juan Rivera homered twice, Jered Weaver pitched his first career shutout and the Los Angeles Angels beat the San Diego Padres, 6-0, to complete a three-game sweep.
* At Arlington, Texas, Chad Billingsley earned his National League-best ninth victory, retiring 16 of 17 batters after an early error put the Dodgers behind, and Casey Blake drove in four runs for Los Angeles in a 6-3 win over AL West-leading Rangers.
* At Kansas City, Brian Bannister pitched eight sharp innings, Miguel Olivo homered and drove in four runs and the Royals beat the Cincinnati Reds, 7-1, for a three-game sweep.
* At Pittsburgh, Dontrelle Willis fought with his control for the third consecutive start by walking eight in 3 2/3 innings, leading to all of Pittsburgh's scoring, and Robinzon Diaz drove in three runs to help the Pirates beat the Tigers, 6-3.
* At Chicago, Ryan Theriot drove in Derrek Lee with a bases-loaded single with one out in the ninth, and the Cubs beat the Minnesota Twins, 3-2, to snap a four-game losing streak.
* At Milwaukee, A.J. Pierzynski singled with two outs in the ninth inning off previously perfect Trevor Hoffman and starter Mark Buehrle hit his first career home run to lift the Chicago White Sox to a 5-4 win over the Brewers.
* At Denver, Garrett Atkins and Todd Helton had three hits each and the Colorado Rockies beat the Seattle Mariners, 7-1, matching the franchise record with their 11th straight win.
In a National League game:
* At Phoenix, Hunter Pence ended a slump with a homer and Lance Berkman also homered to help the Houston Astros beat the Arizona Diamondbacks, 8-3. *