The National League Central-leading St. Louis Cardinals are full of talent, experience and star power.
With a league-leading plus-62 run differential, the Cardinals have the league's best offense. They have put up 138 runs and sport the league's second-best defense at 76 runs allowed.
The men who are behind the race for the NL Central crown have all made early bids for why they should be named to the 2012 All-Star Game.
With one pitching ace out for the early part of the season and the other ace still working his way back from injury, there are a number of flamethrowers who have had their team's back from day one.
Here is a look at the best the Cardinals have to offer.
4-0, 1.62 ERA, 0.84 WHIP
Lohse has been a pleasant surprise for the second year in a row.
Before the Cardinals won the World Series in 2011, Lohse looked like an end-of-the-rotation pitcher who was massively overpaid.
Now the Cardinals and their fans couldn't be happier to see Lohse take the mound.
.276 AVG, 7 HR, 18 RBI, 5 SB, .529 SLG, .394 OBP
Tied for second in the majors with seven home runs, Carlos Beltran has gone from hated enemy to beloved Cardinal.
The former Houston Astro and New York Met was the guy everyone in St. Louis loved to hate.
Save David Freese in 2011, has anyone felt more proud of a Cardinal in recent history when Adam Wainwright struck out Beltran during the 2005 NLCS?
Beltran is a fine addition to a deep Cardinals offense and is among one of the NL's best power hitters.
.330 AVG, 1 HR, 12 RBI, 4 SB, .480 SLG, .398 OBP
There were a lot of questions surrounding the two-year contract between Furcal and the Cardinals this past offseason.
Was he too old? Would he still be able to produce? Would all of his speed be gone?
Furcal has answered the critics and responded with a fine first half. Hitting well above .300 and stealing a few bags puts Furcal in an excellent position to compete for an All-Star bid.
.314 AVG, 4 HR, 15 RBI, 4 SB, .570 SLG, .368 OBP
Yady is still the best catcher in the league, there is no other way of putting it. Rather than beating around the bush, I'll come out and say it: There is no better combination of defense and offense in MLB.
Coming into his own offensively, Yady is looking to have another .300-year followed up with a well deserved Gold Glove.
5-0, 1.60 ERA, .077 WHIP
Layne Lynn is currently the most-winning pitcher in the majors.
With a league-leading five wins, the former relief pitcher has transitioned into a full-time starter without missing a beat.
While Adam Wainwright recovers and regains his form after missing the entire 2011 season, Lance Lynn has answered the call to step up and become the team's best pitcher.
Replacing Albert Pujols sounds like an intimidating and frightening task to undertake. It would be—for anyone except David Freese.
Freese not only figures to be the Cardinals' MVP this season, but he is in combat with Los Angeles' Matt Kemp for NL MVP.
Freese already has two postseason MVP awards to his credit, and will look to add his first regular season trophy after having incredible statistics and superb game play.