Dallas Keuchel will begin a minor league rehab assignment Monday night with Class AA Corpus Christi, the first time the Astros ace will have faced hitters in six weeks.

Keuchel, who hasn't pitched since June 2 to recover from a pinched nerve in his neck, is scheduled to pitch two or three innings in the outing against Frisco at Whataburger Field. Though Astros manager A.J. Hinch was noncommittal on how many rehab starts Keuchel will need, it's all but certain the All-Star lefthander will require at least two.

"I don't know, to be honest with you," Keuchel said. "It (depends on) how I feel on Tuesday and then how I continue to progress.

"Maybe one, maybe 14," he joked. "I don't know."

Keuchel said he hasn't targeted a specific game or series on the Astros' schedule for his return. If it were up to him, he would have come back before the All-Star break. But with an enormous cushion in the American League West standings, the AL-leading Astros played his rehab conservatively.