Nats taking cautious approach with Wieters

Catcher out of lineup for third straight game, expects to return Monday

Nats taking cautious approach with Wieters

MILWAUKEE -- The grind of this season has taken its toll on Nationals catcher Matt Wieters, who was out of the starting lineup for the third consecutive game for Sunday's series finale against the Brewers after taking a foul ball off the knee Thursday. He also revealed Sunday that he has been dealing with a tight back during the past few days.

Wieters did enter Saturday night's game in the eighth inning to catch for two innings, and resting him this weekend was mostly precautionary. He expects to return to the starting lineup Monday night against the Marlins.

"I think we have the luxury of being able to try and get it right," Wieters said. "I've never had that luxury where you're going into September and you have a lead where you can make sure your body feels as good as it can feel at this point. So we'll get it there and be ready to go tomorrow."

Wieters has played in 107 games this season and although he has struggled offensively with a .653 OPS this season, the Nationals have been happy with his game behind the plate. Washington has been hammered by injuries this season, but Wieters has managed to avoid any major injuries.

"We have to preserve him," manager Dusty Baker said Saturday. "He's been banged up the last couple years of his career so we really have to take care of him."

Jamal Collier covers the Nationals for Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.