St. Louis Cardinals: 5 Things We’ve Learned Halfway Through 2014

St. Louis Cardinals: 5 Things We've Learned Midway Through 2014

St. Louis Cardinals players
Ron Chenoy -- USA TODAY Sports

We are approaching the midway point of the 2014 season, and the St. Louis Cardinals have shown some strengths despite the team's pedestrian record. Of course, the opposite is also true as some weaknesses have been exposed. Here are five things we know about the Cardinals at the halfway point.

5. The team's starting pitching has been strong

Lance Lynn St. Louis Cardinals
Ron Chenoy -- USA TODAY Sports

5. The team's starting pitching has been strong

Lance Lynn St. Louis Cardinals
Ron Chenoy -- USA TODAY Sports

If it hadn't been for the likes of Adam Wainwright, Lance Lynn and other pitchers on the roster, who knows where the Cardinals would be? Some cracks are appearing in the armor due to injuries, but there are capable backups at triple-A Memphis, and the trade deadline is fast approaching.

4. Matt Adams is clutch

Matt Adams St. Louis Cardinals
Ron Chenoy -- USA TODAY Sports

4. Matt Adams is clutch

Matt Adams St. Louis Cardinals
Ron Chenoy -- USA TODAY Sports

When Matt Adams came back from injury this month, all he did was slug three homers in his first series against the Washington Nationals. Adams' bat and play have made Cardinal fans forget (for now at least) Albert Pujols, a fixture on the team for the better part of a decade.

3. The center field situation is in flux

Jon Jay St. Louis Cardinals
Scott Rovak -- USA TODAY Sports

3. The center field situation is in flux

Jon Jay St. Louis Cardinals
Scott Rovak -- USA TODAY Sports

The Cardinals tried to shake up the outfield in the offseason and seemingly relegated Jon Jay to the sidelines in favor of Peter Bourjos and others. Guess who's back in center field? Matt Holliday and Allen Craig have been constants, but the team learned the hard way that Jay is a dependable player.

2. How do you spell relief?

Randy Choate St. Louis Cardinals
Ron Chenoy -- USA TODAY Sports

2. How do you spell relief?

Randy Choate St. Louis Cardinals
Ron Chenoy -- USA TODAY Sports

While pitchers like Jason Motte and Trevor Rosenthal have been dependable, others are in a spin cycle. Carlos Martinez may have to stretch out for a while with the starting staff battling injuries, and pitchers like Randy Choate and aren't helping the middle relievers make an impact.

1. The next wave may not be ready yet

Oscar Taveras St. Louis Cardinals
Kim Klement -- USA TODAY Sports

1. The next wave may not be ready yet

Oscar Taveras St. Louis Cardinals
Kim Klement -- USA TODAY Sports

The Cardinals have had dependable prospects through the years, and let's face it, the next class will be good. However, highly-touted prospects like Oscar Taveras and Kolten Wong haven't gotten off the ground yet, and that could be a problem in future seasons if they can't shake sluggish starts to their careers.

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