Midseason Analysis Pt. 1: To Trade or Not to Trade?

Published Jul. 12, 2010 9:23 a.m. ET

By Bill Shanks

July 12, 2010

This is the first of a three-part series on the state of the 2010 Braves as Major League Baseball takes its All-Star break in Anaheim July 12-14.

Pt.1 - Making Deals | Pt. 2 - Armed and Ready | Pt. 3 - Trade Candidates

There is nothing more difficult for a baseball general manager than deciding on players to sacrifice for the future in return for immediate help on a major league roster.

You have to look at potential compared to production. What will a player do in the future, compared to what have they done already in the big leagues and how can that help you now?

With less than three weeks before the trade deadline, there are now two types of teams: those in first place and those trying to get into first place. The Atlanta Braves are thankfully one of the major league teams in first place.

That means general manager Frank Wren has got to evaluate the market to see if there are players that might help ensure his team remains in first place.

Plus he might have to make a tough decision:  do you include a top prospect in a trade, sacrificing the future, for something that