MILWAUKEE -- Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright will throw pitches Wednesday, but they won't be against the Milwaukee Brewers, who face St. Louis in Game 2 of a three-game series at Miller Park.
Wainwright landed on the disabled list July 25 with a bout of tightness in his back. He reported no problems after throwing on flat ground Tuesday, and he will throw a bullpen session Wednesday.
"He keeps taking steps forward," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "We'll watch and evaluate him."
The skipper added that if Wainwright is deemed good to go, the Cardinals wouldn't hesitate to put him back in the rotation before his next regular turn comes up. Such an occurrence might even provide a benefit for the rest of the rotation as the team tries to gear up for a stretch run.
"If there's an opportunity to plug him in and it lines up with his bullpen and side sessions and he looks like he's ready, we'll plug him in, and a couple of guys can get some extra rest," Matheny said. "I don't think, at this point of the season, that that's a bad thing."
With Wainwright out, Matheny will hand the ball Wednesday to right-hander Luke Weaver, who allowed a grand slam and took the loss his last time out in a five-inning effort against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday.
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"I thought Luke did a terrific job," Matheny said. "His stuff looked sharp. It was one rough inning there."
Weaver (0-1, 4.50 ERA) faced Milwaukee twice last season, going 0-1 while allowing four earned runs with 12 strikeouts in 18 innings.
The Brewers will counter with left-hander Brent Suter, who after bouncing back and forth between Milwaukee and Triple-A Colorado Springs has established himself as a solid force in the rotation.
Suter (2-1, 2.40 ERA) moved into a starting role in early July, when Chase Anderson landed on the disabled list. Since then, he is 2-0 with a 1.50 ERA in five starts, allowing just six runs (five earned) while striking out 25 in 30 innings.
"He's done what Chase was doing, if not even more," Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said. "I look at his numbers right now, and he's been outstanding. That was a big loss at the time, and he has more than filled in.
"Every time he's taken the ball, he's pitched wonderfully. He's really picked us up. We've found a player. We've found a guy who's doing a great job and earning his keep."
Suter spun a gem his last time out, holding the Cubs scoreless over a career-high seven innings while allowing just four hits and a walk in a 2-1 Brewers victory. The performance left Chicago manager Joe Maddon singing his praises.
"We could not get anything going against Suter," Maddon said. "He was outstanding, mixing speeds. He really knows what he's doing out there."
In five career appearances against the Cardinals, Suter is 0-1 with a 2.53 ERA. He has faced them three times this season, including one start, posting a 3.12 ERA in 8 2/3 innings.
The Brewers will look to wrap up a series win against the Cardinals on Wednesday after taking the series opener 3-1. Jimmy Nelson pitched six innings of two-run ball, making Milwaukee's three-run first inning stand up.