Brewers' Rickie Weeks close to return

ST. LOUIS -- The Milwaukee Brewers plan to activate second baseman Rickie Weeks from the 15-day disabled list soon to allow him time to ease his way back.

There's been no discussion yet how much playing time Weeks would need to get ready for the postseason. The Brewers led the NL Central by 10½ games prior to Tuesday night's game against the second-place Cardinals.

Weeks has been out with a severely sprained left ankle since July 27. Manager Ron Roenicke said Weeks has looked good running in the outfield the last few days, but has yet to run the bases.

"Yesterday was a real good day for him, I could see the improvements out there," Roenicke said. "He didn't have that little pause, that little hesitation that he's had."

Weeks took ground balls at second base before Tuesday night's game at St. Louis. Jerry Hairston, acquired from the Nationals on the trade deadline, has made 17 starts at second base.

"I've seen him for a lot of years and always liked the way he played," Roenicke said. "He was a tough out. I kind of thought what he was going to be and he is, he's a real nice player."

Weeks is batting .272 with 19 homers and 43 RBIs in 104 games. Hairston was batting .275 with four homers and 28 RBIs in 30 games overall with Milwaukee.