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Among several Pirates roster moves, Ivan Nova activated and will start Sunday in Chicago

Jerry DiPaola
| Sunday, June 10, 2018, 1:06 p.m.
Pirates starting pitcher Ivan Nova looks on during the first inning against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on May 2, 2018 in Washington, DC.
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Pirates starting pitcher Ivan Nova looks on during the first inning against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on May 2, 2018 in Washington, DC.

The Pirates have returned their rotation to its original form, activating Ivan Nova from the disabled list and announcing he will be the starting pitcher Sunday against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field.Nova has been out (sprained right ring finger) since his most recent start May 24. He has won only two of his 11 starts this season, with a 2-5 record, 47 strikeouts and 10 walks while allowing 10 home runs in 61 23 innings. He hasn't posted a victory since April 15.

To make room for Nova, Nick Kingham was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis. Kingham is 2-3 in his six starts with the Pirates, including 6 13 innings Saturday when he was the losing pitcher in a 2-0 loss to the Cubs. He allowed only four hits and struck out five batters.

Overall, Kingham struck out 35 in 35 13 innings, with seven walks and four home runs.

Also, the Pirates brought up Jacob Stallings from Indianapolis as a backup catcher, with Francisco Cervelli in concussion protocal after getting hit in the jaw with foul ball Saturday.

Stallings is hitting .294, with one home run, 13 doubles and 25 RBI in Indianapolis. Adam Frazier, hitting .237 with three home runs and eight RBI for the Pirates, was sent to Triple-A.

In a minor-league move, the Pirates moved Jung Ho Kang from High-A Bradenton to Indianapolis. He was hitting .417 (10 hits, 24 at-bats), with three home runs and 11 RBI.

For Sunday's game against the Cubs, Pirates manager Clint Hurdle gave center fielder Starling Marte the day off, replaced him with Austin Meadows and inserted left fielder Corey Dickerson into the No. 3 spot.

With Cervelli injured and Josh Bell slumping and batting seventh, third baseman Colin Moran will be the cleanup hitter for the first time in his career.

Jerry DiPaola is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at or via Twitter @JDiPaola_Trib

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