Manager Joe Girardi made the expected announcement on Friday.
Tanaka was an All-Star last year during his first season in the majors, but the Japanese right-hander missed 2 1/2 months while rehabilitating a partially torn ligament in his elbow. He returned for two starts in late September.
CC Sabathia will have his streak of six straight opening-day starts for New York end. The lefty is coming back from season-ending knee surgery in July and has 11 opening-days starts overall.