Boston Red Sox

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - SEPTEMBER 05: Chris Sale #41 of the Boston Red Sox looks on from the dugout during the first inning at Fenway Park on September 05, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Chris Sale’s return to the Red Sox is like working on Friday. Every so often, you look up at the clock and get more excited that the weekend is almost here. However, in this case, you’re listening to Alex Cora’s periodic updates on Sale’s rehab process.

Boston’s ace had Tommy John surgery in March 2020 and dealt with a long rehab, including multiple setbacks. His long journey back is almost complete, as he threw to live hitters on Saturday in a simulated game.

“Really good, really good,” Cora told reporters when asked how Sale was feeling after throwing, as transcribed by “I just saw him this morning, he feels great.”

Cora added that the next step for Sale is to do another live, two-inning bullpen session this Wednesday. That is great news for Red Sox fans, as Sale could add even more help to the current best team in the American League East. However, Cora wants to temper the excitement.

“So now we just gotta stay patient, don’t get too excited, but the fact that he’s progressing this way, you start thinking ahead,” Cora said. “You know, when he’s going to contribute and when he’s going to be part of what we’re trying to accomplish, and that’s the fun part.”

With the MLB trade deadline quickly approaching, many teams are looking for pitching help. With Sale’s rehab going well but there still being a big question mark over how he will perform once he gets back, some worry the Sox will listen to trades for the ace.

“Obviously, teams are going to make moves in the upcoming weeks and try to improve,” Cora said. “One thing for sure, nobody can trade for Chris Sale, right? We can add Chris Sale to our equation, and we’re very excited about that.”

The Red Sox are not interested in moving Sale and are all in on his rehab, despite the lack of a definite timetable for his return.

“We will stay the course, as we always do, and whenever he’s ready, he’s ready, but we don’t want to get ahead of ourselves and say, this day, and then that day is not the case,” Cora said.

Although the Red Sox starting pitchers have been worrisome at points throughout this season, they are still winning games without their ace. It’s only a matter of time until Sale comes back and makes Boston into an even bigger threat.

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