With what has been a quiet start to the week in Las Vegas, the White Sox finally announced their first move of the Winter Meetings. This afternoon, the club announced that they acquired right-handed pitcher Ivan Nova from the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for Yordi Rosario and international bonus pool money.
— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) December 11, 2018
Nova, a 31-year-old starting pitcher most recently played for the Pirates after spending six seasons with the New York Yankees. In 2018, he made 29 starts and posted a 4.19 ERA with 114 strikeouts and 35 walks in 161.0 IP. He has one year of control left before becoming a free agent and will fill one of the back of the rotation spots for the 2019 season.
He’s had a bit of a roller coaster of a career so far. However, one thing that has remained consistent is his ability to pound the strike zone. Ivan Nova has a career BB/9 of just 2.5, and pairs that with a 6.6 K/9. Nova will take on the role of the “innings eater,” similar to what James Shields did for the club last season.
Ivan Nova is owed $9 million for the remaining year of his contract, which gives the White Sox a pretty affordable arm to add to their rotation. This acquisition allows the White Sox to have a serviceable stopgap in the rotation while they wait for the development and arrival of their pitching prospects that will be making their way to the majors in the near future.
Yordi Rosario is a 19-year-old right-handed pitcher that has spent his career so far in rookie ball. In 2018, he played in the Dominican Summer League and the Arizona Rookie League, posting a combined 2.89 ERA with 70 strikeouts and 12 walks in 14 total appearances (with 11 of those being starts).
Overall, this is a good move for the White Sox as they didn’t have to give up too much to add to their rotation. Plus, Ivan Nova can help mentor the young pitchers and maybe teach them a thing or two about commanding their arsenal. With one rotation spot still open, it will be interesting to see if the White Sox continue to make any additional moves to fill the spot, or if they want to give that spot to someone already in the organization.
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