Chris Sale reacts after striking out a batter to end the top of the second inning during a rehab start at Hadlock Field on Sunday. Derek Davis/Staff Photographer

BOSTON — Chris Sale’s return to the Red Sox rotation is still at least a couple weeks away, Manager Alex Cora said Monday.

Sale’s scheduled rehab start for the WooSox on Saturday at Polar Park will not be his last outing before being activated, Cora said. He will pitch at least once more – in what would be his fifth rehab start – before rejoining the Red Sox.

“His start on Saturday is not going to be his last one,” Cora said. “He won’t be with us after that one.”

Sale started for Double-A Portland twice in the last few days — on Tuesday and Sunday — and is with the Red Sox at Fenway Park as they open a four-game series against the Blue Jays on Monday night. His outing Saturday will come on six days rest, potentially setting him up to pitch again either Aug. 5 or 6 in the minors. If all goes well, the earliest Sale might be activated would be during Boston’s homestand against the Rays and Orioles from Aug. 10-15. It’s also possible the club could wait even longer.

At this point, the Red Sox are taking a day-by-day approach with Sale, who last pitched in the majors on Aug. 12, 2019. On Saturday, it’s likely Sale will pitch four or five innings – more than the 3 2/3 innings he has gone in his last two outings.

“He feels great. He’s here with us… we had a conversation and he was telling me about the fans and how he felt,” Cora said. “He felt more nervous in (Florida) with 30 people there than actually in Portland with a packed house. He has been able to repeat his delivery. He loves the fact his fastball command is there and the velocity is there. Everything is trending the right way.”

KIKÉ HERNÁNDEZ HAS been named AL Player of the Week.

In six games last week, Hernandez batted .400 (10-for-25) with a .448 on-base percentage, 1.000 slugging percentage, 1.448 OPS, three homers, four doubles, one triple, eight runs, nine RBI, three walks, two strikeouts and one sac fly.

“He’s doing an amazing job,” Cora said. “Hitting the ball hard, playing good defense. He turned a double play (Sunday) that was pretty solid. Ground ball to Raffy (Rafael Devers), kind of like he took his time, and he turned that double play playing in the shift. And the way he charges the ball. He’s been running the bases well. He’s been doing a great job. We gave him those off days. We gave him one off day and then we benched him the next one. And then we put him in the bottom of the lineup kind of like for him to breathe. And he’s made some adjustments. He’s been better controlling the strike zone. And he’s hitting the ball hard.”

Cora gave Hernández three straight days off (two games and a team off day) in mid-June. Hernández returned to the lineup July 19 in Kansas City. Since then, his OPS has increased 129 points from .660 to .789.

He is slashing .295/.406/.682/1.087 with eight homers, eight doubles, one triple, 17 runs and 19 RBI in 23 games (106 plate appearances) since June 27.

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