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Yankees Opening Day roster all but finalized

Vidal Nuno's versatility was key in locking down a spot in the Yankees bullpen.
Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

TAMPA, Fla. – The New York Yankees finalized the roster which they will bring to Houston with them for Opening Day, beginning when Joe Girardi announced prior to Friday’s game that the team’s final two bullpen spots had been awarded to right-handed pitcher Dellin Betances and left-handed pitcher Vidal Nuno.

Betances, 26, had been a starter throughout the minor leagues until midway through last season. After struggling as part of Scranton/Wilkes-Barre's rotation, Betances was shifted to the bullpen and responded by going 4-2 with a 1.35 ERA in 32 relief appearances with Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and striking out 83 (against just 26 walks) in 60 innings.

Nuno, 26, has also been primarily a starter since signing with the Yankees as a minor league free agent in 2011. In four official Grapefruit League games (two starts), Nuno allowed three runs on five hits over eight innings (a 3.38 ERA), striking out eight and not walking a batter. He made his major-league debut with the Yankees last season, pitching 20 innings and going 1-2 with a 3.35 ERA in five games.

During Friday's game against the Miami Marlins, San Diego Padres infielder Jedd Gyorko broke the news regarding the infielder’s battle before the Yankees had a chance, tweeting his congratulations to his former teammate, infielder Dean Anna, on winning a spot on the Opening Day roster.

That leaves just one spot officially unaccounted for, though it is presumed to belong to infielder Eduardo Nunez. The only other remaining candidate in camp is Yangervis Solarte, a utilityman who is in camp on a minor league contract. Solarte has been phenomenal throughout spring training, but not having a spot on the 40-man roster should ultimately banish him to Triple-A.

The team made another transaction earlier on Friday, bringing an old face back into the organization when Alfredo Aceves signed a minor league deal. He will serve as depth in Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s rotation.

Dan is’s beat writer for the New York Yankees and the Trenton Thunder. Follow him on Twitter at @danpfeiffer74 for all the latest New York Yankees news.

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