The St. Louis Cardinals activated catcher Willson Contreras from the injured list ahead of Monday's series opener against the Atlanta Braves. Contreras, catching and batting third, will be making his first appearance at the big-league level since fracturing his forearm on May 7.

In corresponding moves, the Cardinals optioned backup catcher Nick Raposo to Triple-A Memphis. They also activated right-handed reliever Nick Robertson off the IL and optioned him to Memphis as well. Raposo had only recently been recalled after Iván Herrera required his own stint on the injured list because of lower back tightness. Herrera had been splitting time with Pedro Pagés behind the plate. Pagés, it stands to reason, will now serve as Contreras' backup until Herrera is ready to return to active duty.

Contreras, 32, was off to an impressive start prior to the injury. He had hit .280/.398/.551 (167 OPS+) with six home runs and 12 runs batted in over the course of his first 31 games. His contributions had been worth an estimated 1.7 Wins Above Replacement, according to Baseball Reference. Contreras, who suffered his fractured forearm when he was hit on a swing by New York Mets designated hitter J.D. Martinez, is in the second of a five-year deal with the Cardinals worth more than $87 million.

The Cardinals are in a considerably better spot now than they were when Contreras went down. At that point, they were 15-21 on the season and 6 1/2 games back in the National League Central. The Cardinals enter Monday's game with a 39-37 record and a five-game deficit behind the Milwaukee Brewers

If the season were to end today, the Cardinals would be the second of three National League wild card teams.