ATLANTA -- Trever Miller was expected to join his Cardinals teammates in Atlanta on Thursday, but the left-hander almost certainly won't be available for at least another day.

Miller was diagnosed with a left forearm strain, according to the club, and his status is considered day-to-day at this point. He had been in St. Louis to undergo an exam with team physician Dr. George Paletta after experiencing discomfort in his elbow.

"They [the medical staff] see a problem," manager Tony La Russa said. "We're just going to day-to-day it, see when he's available. I don't think he's available [Thursday], for example. ... We'll just use right-handers that can get left-handers out."

The good news is that Miller's fellow lefty specialist, Dennys Reyes, is available. Reyes spent time on the disabled list in August with elbow discomfort, but has been activated and is feeling better. La Russa said that even after pitching on Wednesday, Reyes could be available again on Thursday.

Three days in a row might be a push for Reyes at this point, but he's essentially as available as ever.

Lohse to face Braves on Sunday night

ATLANTA -- Kyle Lohse's final line on Tuesday night in Milwaukee left some things to be desired, but the Cardinals saw enough in the right-hander's performance to give him another start. Lohse will pitch Sunday night's series finale against the Braves at Turner Field.

Manager Tony La Russa acknowledged that it wasn't automatic to start Lohse again after the veteran allowed four runs on seven hits in five innings in a loss to the Brewers. But he insisted there were things to like. Lohse struck out five, his highest total since he underwent forearm surgery in May, and did not allow a home run for the first time since he returned from the injury.

"I think we had to see something from Kyle that made us think he was a better choice than [Blake] Hawksworth or [Jeff Suppan] or somebody," La Russa said. "And he did some good things. He did some really good things."

Lohse agreed that the start represented progress, but also admitted disappointment that he's still not getting the results he wants.

"I was really close to going out and having a start that I'm happy with," he said. "Just little things. I feel like I'm still making progress. It's frustrating. You want it to be, like, overnight -- come back and be good. But it's a process. I feel like I made some good pitches."

In four starts since returning, Lohse is 1-3 with a 10.31 ERA, 14 strikeouts and six walks in 18 1/3 innings. He has yet to pitch longer than 5 1/3 innings since the operation.


Manager Tony La Russa said Thursday that Yadier Molina will require more days off than usual over the season's final 3 1/2 weeks. Molina is dealing with right knee soreness. ... Tyler Greene is unlikely to see much time at third base for the remainder of the season. La Russa said that he prefers not to expose Greene at an unfamiliar position, especially given the Cardinals' ground-ball-heavy staff. "I think you've got to play the defense there," La Russa said, indicating that Pedro Feliz will continue to see the lion's share of innings and at-bats at the hot corner. ... Randy Winn got the start over Jon Jay in right field on Thursday in large part because of his history of success against the Braves and at Turner Field. For his career, Winn has hit .379 with a .442 on-base percentage and a .559 slugging percentage against the Braves, and has a .395/.457/.654 line in 95 plate appearances at Turner Field.

Baby Birds

Joe Mather homered twice, helping Triple-A Memphis defeat Oklahoma City, 7-5, in game one of their best-of-five Pacific Coast League playoff series on Wednesday. ... Double-A Springfield's series opener against Northwest Arkansas was postponed until Thursday due to rain. ... Shelby Miller was dominant as Class A Quad Cities opened the Midwest League playoffs with a 4-0 win over Kane County. Quad Cities must win one of the next two games to advance to the league semifinals. ... Short-season Batavia pulled even in its best-of-three series against Tri-City with a 5-4 win on Wednesday. Jonathan Rodriguez went 3-for-4 in the win.

Miller earns player of the day honors with the finest game of his young career. The right-hander pitched seven shutout innings, striking out a career-high 13 against one walk and two hits. Miller, 19, was the Cardinals' first-round Draft pick in 2009. He finished the regular season with a 7-5 record, a 3.62 ERA, 140 strikeouts and 33 walks in 104 1/3 innings.