Cardinals co-ace Chris Carpenter accompanied the club to Detroit Monday afternoon after completing an encouraging side session at Busch Stadium. Given another positive throw at Comerica Park on Wednesday, Carpenter could be paired against hitters as soon as this weekend in Kansas City.

Carpenter, still less than two weeks from returning to the mound, said that he prefers to downplay the possibility but acknowledged that early indications are overwhelming positive. After staying off the mound for three months while strengthening a problematic right shoulder through rest and rehabilitation, Carpenter has worked three side sessions since Wednesday. He mixed in breaking balls in his second session last weekend and added to his workout Monday prior to a high school all-star game played at Busch Stadium.

The club won't sign off Carpenter throwing live batting practice to teammates until he successfully completes a Wednesday side session Wednesday afternoon.