Hamels has been sidelined by the injury since June 28.
"The plan was kind of to give him a few days in the break and then get back and hopefully be ready to start a throwing program going forward here coming out of the break," Hottovy said. "One good thing with Cole is that he's so far stretched out and he's in a good place. As soon as he starts throwing, we could rush this thing. It shouldn't be long before he gets on the mound. And once he kind of hit that milestone and start setting different things we want to hit -- pitches off the mound or number of bullpens in a week, that sort of thing -- then we can get him back."
The Cubs have expressed hope that Hamels could return in early August. He has been a rock for the Cubs, going 6-3 with a 2.98 ERA and 1.20 WHIP in 17 starts.
"I'm hoping for some optimistic news here as we come out of the break, but I would expect him to start a throwing program here fairly soon," Hottovy said.
Because of their off days, the Cubs may only need a fifth starter two more times before Hamels returns, Hottovy said.