Cardinals manager Mike Matheny is hoping some days off will be a good thing for struggling third baseman David Freese, who was hitless in 16 at-bats after Monday night.

He was given Tuesday off and, Matheny said, possibly today as well.

“Right now he’s just not seeing the ball,” Matheny said. “When that happens, it’s hard to go in (the cage) and get work and come out here at game speed and try to take the things you’re working and try to put them into action. He needs a little time to physically, just work, work on his swing, and mentally gather his thoughts and try to get him in a better spot. We’ll see how it plays out.

“We’ve tried to let him play through things and match him up (in good situations). He’s not heading in a good direction, and at that point we have to say we’ll take a different perspective here and give him a little bit of time and see how he responds to that. We’ve seen that work for him before.”

Tuesday was probably a good day to give Freese off. He was one for 12 in his career against Reds starter Bronson Arroyo.

MORE BABY STEPS FOR MOTTE

Closer Jason Motte threw again Tuesday, increasing his velocity and distance as he tries to see if he can return to action without needing Tommy John surgery on his elbow. He made about 25 throws at 60 feet, then 10 or so throws at 90 feet.

Motte had taken Monday off from throwing in his rehab program but continues to report being pain free. While today had been the initial day for when a decision would be made on whether he would have surgery, the progress Motte has had has led to the team to keep that process open ended now.

Motte acknowledged that the real test won’t come until he gets to the point where he can throw with some velocity, a point he’s still working toward.

“At a certain point, you have to have faith in it,” Motte said. “It’s either going to feel great or it’s not. Today was one of those days, you throw and it’s going to be what it’s going to be.”