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German, Cessa make Opening Day roster

Cortes, Florial, Hale reassigned to Minor League camp
@BryanHoch
March 23, 2019

TAMPA, Fla. -- Domingo Germán reached for the door handle to the manager's office and sauntered through the hallway to rejoin his teammates, his beaming smile offering a sneak preview of the news that Aaron Boone was about to announce. It has been decided that German and Luis Cessa have

TAMPA, Fla. -- Domingo Germán reached for the door handle to the manager's office and sauntered through the hallway to rejoin his teammates, his beaming smile offering a sneak preview of the news that Aaron Boone was about to announce.

It has been decided that German and Luis Cessa have both made the Opening Day roster, Boone said after a 7-3 Grapefruit League loss to the Blue Jays. German is expected to serve as the Yankees' fourth starter, while Cessa will pitch in a long-relief role.

"I think everyone has an understanding that there is competition and decisions to be made on final spots," Boone said. "I'm sure that's an uneasy trip in here. Those are the nice ones, to be able to give good news to guys, especially when you feel like they've come in and grown and earned things."

CC Sabathia will also be on the roster for the March 28 season opener against the Orioles at Yankee Stadium, though the veteran will be serving a five-game suspension for his actions in a game last September against the Rays.

With Sabathia continuing to build stamina as he prepares for a late-April return to the rotation, the Yankees plan to clear his penalty from the books and then place Sabathia on the injured list after the season's fifth game.

Jonathan Loaisiga, who was optioned to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Saturday, is then expected to rejoin the big league squad.

"We're getting him ready to start," Boone said of Loaisiga. "Whether we decide to do something in the opener range, [that is possible], but I could see it being a start. We'll see where we are at that point in the season."

German's turn would come up on April 1 against the Tigers, though it remains possible that the Yankees could use an "opener" for that game.

"That's also something fluid," Boone said. "They're all built up, they're all capable. That'll be a week-by-week, rotation-by-rotation kind of thing."

In other roster moves announced on Saturday, the Yankees reassigned left-hander Nestor Cortes, outfielder Estevan Florial and right-hander David Hale to Minor League camp.

Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and Facebook.