Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images
OF Carlos Beltran
C Yadier Molina (.355/.399/.505, 5 HR, 42 RBI, 34 R)—STARTER
If the season ended today, Molina would likely walk away with NL MVP honors. Once a defensive-minded catcher, he has taken his offensive game to another level the past two years, and he currently leads the NL in batting average.
OF Carlos Beltran (.307/.347/.548, 18 HR, 48 RBI, 41 R)—STARTER
After slumping badly in the second half last season, Beltran has rebounded to once again be a force out of the No. 2 spot in the Cardinals lineup. He tied with teammate Allen Craig for the lead among NL qualifiers with a .455 batting average with runners in scoring position.
1B Allen Craig (.321/.361/.466, 7 HR, 61 RBI, 41 R)
Despite the fact that he's hit just seven home runs, Craig currently ranks second in the NL with 61 RBI. The 28-year-old had 22 home runs and 92 RBI in 119 games last season, and he should have no trouble topping the 100-RBI mark in his first full season in the majors.
2B Matt Carpenter (.318/.399/.473, 6 HR, 30 RBI, 57 R)
A utility man last season who primarily played corner infield, Carpenter was moved to second base in the offseason in an effort to get his bat into the lineup everyday. He then took on the added role of hitting leadoff when Rafael Furcal was lost for the season, and he's done better than anyone could have hoped so far.
SP Shelby Miller (8-5, 2.35 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, 9.9 K/9)
The Cardinals' top pitching prospect since the day they took him No. 19 overall in the 2009 draft, Miller was a big reason why the Cardinals were confident letting Kyle Lohse walk in free agency. That said, it's safe to say they didn't expect the 22-year-old to be quite this good, and he has to be viewed as the NL Rookie of the Year front-runner right now (sorry Yasiel Puig, but not yet).
SP Adam Wainwright (10-5, 2.31 ERA, 1.01 WHIP, 8.2 K/9)
After a rocky first half last season in his return from Tommy John surgery, Wainwright began to look like the ace of old in the second half, and that was enough for the Cardinals to lock him up with a five-year, $97.5 million extension. He's back to elite form this season and would have a strong case to start if it weren't for Matt Harvey pitching in front of the home crowd.
RP Edward Mujica (21 SV, 2.20 ERA, 0.73 WHIP, 7.7 K/9)
The Cardinals bullpen was a disaster early in the season, with Jason Motte sidelined and Mitchell Boggs not up to the task of closing. However, Mujica has been a stabilizing force since assuming closing duties. He's a perfect 21-of-21 on saves and has walked just two batters in 32.2 innings of work.