(USA Today)

Pirates, Nova agree to 3-year contract

Ivan Nova rejuvenated his career during a solid two-month stint with the Pirates at the end of 2016. The pitcher hopes to build on that with Pittsburgh.

A person with knowledge of the deal said Thursday that Nova has agreed to a $26 million, three-year contract to give Pittsburgh's young rotation an established starter behind ace Gerrit Cole.

Pittsburgh acquired Nova from the New York Yankees at the Aug. 1 trade deadline. Though the Pirates faded down the stretch and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2012, Nova was a pleasant surprise. Working with pitching coach Ray Searage, Nova went 5-2 with a 3.06 ERA in 11 starts for Pittsburgh. Nova was particularly effective at PNC Park, going 3-1 with a 2.45 ERA and giving up just two walks in 40 1/3 innings, a marked improvement over the 7-6, 4.90 ERA he posted in 15 starts for the Yankees.

Nova figures to in the middle of Pittsburgh's rotation behind Cole and Jameson Taillon. While there in-house prospects to flesh out the rest of the rotation, the Pirates are still working to acquire at least one more proven starter before the team reports for spring training in February.

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