I don’t see much hope for this season now. At some point, Schuerholz will have to move on and start trying to build for the future. A couple of things to consider…

1. The payroll is probably going to be cut because attendance will be down, plus the new suits will probably be even cheaper than the old ones.

2. Do you want to build for 2007, or figure that it’s probably a lost cause?

I don’t think 2007 is a lost cause; anybody (well, almost anybody) is within reach of the playoff in any year. That changes the equation. You’re less likely to deal Andruw or Hudson if you think you can win next year.

Those two players are probably the Braves’ two most valuable commodities. Well, the two most valuable commodities they’re liable to trade; they aren’t going to trade McCann. Call them Group One.

Group Two is the two ten-and-five men, Smoltz and Chipper. Smoltz, were he willing to accept a trade, would probably be much sought-after. Ideally, you get the Red Sox and Yankees into a bidding war. I don’t know how much Chipper would bring in trade.

Group Three are the middle infielders, Giles and Renteria. Their value depends upon finding the right team. I fully expect at least one of them to be traded, because Betemit can probably give you at least as much for a whole lot less money, and infield is a position of strength in the system.

Group Four is Potpourri: Thomson, Ramirez, LaRoche. These players have some value to the right team but probably wouldn’t bring top prospects; the pitchers are health risks.

That’s pretty much everybody who makes anything. There’s not much point in trading cheap players at this stage. Relievers get swapped a lot normally, but who’d want anything out of our bullpen? My guess is that of all the relievers in the pen, McBride is the only one who would bring anything at all and he won’t be traded. I’ll deal with the tradeable commodities in upcoming days.