ST. LOUIS -- Cardinals closer Jason Isringhausen came to the ballpark on Saturday expecting to throw one final bullpen tuneup before coming off the 15-day disabled list next week.
Instead, he was activated.
A day after the worst loss at 3-year-old Busch Stadium, a 20-2 pasting by the Phillies on Friday night, the Cardinals decided they needed Isringhausen even if he wasn't ready to pitch the ninth inning.
The 35-year-old right-hander wasn't surprised, after the Cardinals used four relievers and infielder Aaron Miles in the rout.
"I had an idea after last night's game because I knew we'd be short of pitching," Isringhausen said. "I think after seven years they've seen me throw enough.
"That break did me good just to get my mind right, and now I'm back."
Isringhausen had been on the DL since May 16, ostensibly because of a lacerated hand but more to give him time to clear his head and refine mechanics after a stretch of woeful outings. Isringhausen was 1-5 with an 8.00 ERA and six blown saves in 17 chances.
Isringhausen believed he may have been tipping his pitches because hitters were laying off his curveball.
"The more I think about it, maybe it makes sense," Isringhausen said. "The first 2½ weeks of the season went pretty good and then all of a sudden I wasn't throwing any different but the results were different."
General manager John Mozeliak said Isringhausen would likely be used in middle relief until he regains his confidence. Ryan Franklin has been the stand-in closer and had eight saves in 11 opportunities.
Both Isringhausen and Reyes were available for Saturday's game against the Phillies. Reyes arrived about an hour before the game. The Cardinals had planned to watch Isringhausen in one last bullpen session Saturday before activating him on Tuesday for an interleague series against the Kansas City Royals, but decided they might need him immediately.
Mozeliak also said ace right-hander Chris Carpenter, the 2005 NL Cy Young winner, would seek a second opinion for what he termed chronic pain in his surgically-repaired elbow. Carpenter made only one start last year and had been on schedule to return to the rotation in mid-July.
Isringhausen said he believed Carpenter, who was examined by team physician Dr. George Paletta on Friday, would see Dr. James Andrews on Monday.
"He's just been experiencing some discomfort and it's been going on for a little bit," Mozeliak said. "It needs to be addressed."
Todd Wellemeyer lasted only 3 1/3 innings and gave up a career-worst eight runs in Friday's 20-2 loss while struggling with tightness in his elbow. He had missed his last turn in the rotation because of the elbow, but said Saturday he thought he would be fine to make his next start.
Miles made his third career relief appearance in the loss, working a perfect ninth against the top of the Phillies' order. Worrell allowed three runs on four hits in two innings.
Worrell was 0-1 with a 7.94 ERA in four games covering 5 2/3 innings, while Mather batted .229 in 35 at-bats over 13 games with one homer and three RBIs.