Washington Nationals ace and top NL Cy Young candidate Max Scherzer will return to the bump Thursday, manager Dave Martinez announced.

Scherzer has missed the past couple starts with a back strain. He’ll now take to the hill against the Colorado Rockies.

Martinez had thought about holding Scherzer out until Friday against the NL-best Los Angeles Dodgers. However, this move puts him in line to start a hypothetical wild card game.