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Yankees felt they had to give youngsters a chance after signing Chase Headley

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Trading Martin Prado to the Marlins may not have been the Yankees' favorite move to make, but if they want to have Rob Refsnyder and Jose Pirela on the big league roster in 2015, it was definitely a necessary one.

Martin Prado was traded from the Yankees to the Marlins Friday.
Martin Prado was traded from the Yankees to the Marlins Friday.
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Yankees' trading Martin Prado and David Phelps to the Marlins in exchange for right-hander Nathan Eovaldi, first baseman Garrett Jones and pitching prospect Domingo German Friday has some in the former's fanbase up in arms, but New York GM Brian Cashman says the deal is worth it.

Cashman, speaking about the swap Friday afternoon, thinks making it was necessary in order to give guys like Rob Refsnyder and Jose Pirela and a chance to play in 2015, something that's consistent with the team's past statements. The Yankees often expressed their interest in carrying the duo on future rosters this summer, so it's unlikely they wanted to keep Prado after re-signing Chase Headley on Monday.

Still, it's possible sending Prado away will someday come back to hurt the Yankees, as the veteran solidly batted .316 with seven home runs and 16 RBI in 37 contests for them last season.

"After we signed Headley, we felt we had these young kids who could compete and take the job there at second," Cashman told MLB.com's Paul Casella. "Only with the right deal would we move Prado, and we felt this was a deal worth taking a shot at."

It certainly may prove to be, with Eovaldi and Jones both seeming to have much potential. Eovaldi, despite going just 6-14 with a 4.37 ERA in 2014, is known to have a fastball in the upper-90s, while Jones has hit 94 homers over the last five years.

But that doesn't mean cutting ties with Prado was easy for Cashman, who praised the utility man for his personality.

"It's not easy (trading Prado)," Cashman said. "Not just because of his versatility, but the type of player and person he is. The leadership qualities he possesses, the ability for him to play second, third and outfield. Those are valuable assets for a manager."

They definitely were when the Yankees were vying for a playoff spot in August and September, a time period in which Prado excelled wherever he started. Originally acquired to man right field, Prado often impressed with his glove in the infield as well, particularly at second.

Nonetheless, since they're trying to get younger this offseason, it's probable the Yankees just didn't want to hold onto an aging star like him any longer, good as he still appears to be at all aspects of the game.