Miller expected to be back on mound next week

Miller expected to be back on mound next week

Miller expected to be back on mound next week

ST. LOUIS -- On Thursday, one day after being stung on the right elbow by a line drive, Shelby Miller tested his pitching arm by playing catch. Encouraged by how well his arm responded to the exercise, Miller hopes to be back on the mound by next week.

Manager Mike Matheny substantiated that optimism by noting that a stint on the disabled list has "not been a part of the conversation."

"[It's] just a little sore, but nothing bad," Miller said. "I figured it would be a little worse than it was based on how that ball hit me. It feels really good. It feels loose. We're doing a little more treatment. I'm trying to see if I can pitch as soon as possible."

Although Miller expressed an interest in pitching as early as this weekend, that is not in the Cardinals' plans. Miller's next scheduled start was to be on Tuesday, though adjustments to the rotation now have Adam Wainwright in line to pitch that day. Miller would start at some point after that.

Miller still bears the seam mark on his elbow at the spot where Carl Crawford's line drive hit him squarely between two bones. Otherwise there is no evident day-after bruising.

"My arm is [sorer] after I pitch than it is now," he said. "To stay out there for 100 pitches last night, my arm would probably feel worse than it does right now. That's something to be happy about. I got lucky there."

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.