Monthly Cardinals prospect rankings: May

Our monthly subscriber-only, in-depth report on rising and falling St. Louis Cardinals prospects. Matt Adams is among those whose stock is improving.

This is the May 2012 edition of CariocaCardinal's Monthly Top 40 Prospect List. I hope that this report will be the launching pad for discussion regarding St. Louis Cardinals prospects.

Each month, I present my top 20 prospects (updated through the end of the month), my next 20 prospects (not ranked but listed in alphabetical order), as well as whatever observations I feel are relevant at the moment.

This report reflects my opinions and not that of the entire The Cardinal Nation staff, so feel to address any comments or criticisms directly to me either through a premium message board post or via PM if you prefer.

Note: Players remain eligible for the list as long as they maintain their prospect status (less than 50 innings pitched or less than 130 plate appearances in the major leagues.)

On to the report!

Prospect Rankings

Behind each player's name in parentheses is where I ranked him last month. Another point of reference is the overall site Top 40 for 2012, compiled during the off-season.

The Top 20

#1 Shelby Miller (1). Hanging on to the #1 ranking by a thread.

#2 Oscar Taveras (2). Could the 19-year-old end up as Minor League Player of the Year?

#3 Kolten Wong (3). Looking like a sure major league regular. With more power, could look like a sure major league all-star.

#4 Carlos Martinez (4). Hype level low this year but the performance is as good as ever.

#5 Matt Adams (10). Gets #5 slot over Rosenthal due to performance to date.

#6 Trevor Rosenthal (8). Good reviews after skipping a level. Performance has been good but not great.

#7 Tyrell Jenkins (9). Needs to perform at a higher level to gain a much higher ranking.

#8 Matt Carpenter (6). Upside still a question mark but looks like a solid major leaguer.

#9 Ryan Jackson (12). Is proving his bat is not a fantasy.

#10 Eduardo Sanchez (7). Is he just out of whack or is he not totally healed from his injury?

#11 Zack Cox (11). Coming around after a slow start.

#12 Charlie Tilson (13). Receiving good reviews in Extended Spring Training.

#13 Jordan Swagerty (14). I thought he would drop after injury but no one has stepped up to pass him.

#14 Anthony Garcia (16). I still seem to be the only one sold on this outfielder.

#15 Scott Gorgen (18). Mixing in some great starts with some weak ones. That is normal for a player after a long layoff.

#16 Joe Kelly (21-40). At Triple-A, he is finally making a believer of me.

#17 Tony Cruz (15) Will continue to drop if he doesn't hit in his limited major league chances.

#18 Shane Robinson (21-40). A .900+ OPS in the majors gets you on this list!

#19 Adron Chambers (20). Another who started slowly and has come on strongly.

#20 Brandon Dickson (21-40).

21 through 40 are in alphabetical order

Bryan Anderson (19). Is his terrible start due to pouting over not making the major league roster?

Maikel Cleto (17). Not sharp while now pitching in relief.

Kyle Conley (NR). Looks like he may have enough bat if he can stay healthy

Chuckie Fick (NR). Has been the best reliever at Triple-A.

Greg Garcia (21-40). All who see him come away impressed.

John Gast (21-40).

Ronny Gil (21-40). Slow start but now showing his potential.

Mark Hamilton (21-40). Injured all month but now back.

Seth Maness (NR). April Pitcher of the Month is rising fast!

Tommy Pham (21-40). Season-ending injury could eventually drop him off the list.

Tyler Rahmatulla (21-40). Has played well when not injured.

Adam Reifer (21-40). Looks like he is finally getting back on track.

Starlin Rodriguez (21-40).

Jonathan Rodriguez (21-40). Continues as always; high OBP, good power, lots of K's.

Rainel Rosario (21-40). Has struggled but potential is still there.

Kevin Siegrist (21-40). Ready to come back from injury.

Cody Stanley (21-40). Suspension has little bearing on prospect status.

Breyvic Valera (21-40).

Boone Whiting (21-40). Needs to come back from injury to stay on the list.

Dropped out this month

#5 Lance Lynn. No longer eligible.

Erik Komatsu (21-40). Claimed off waivers by the Twins.

Aaron Luna (21-40). Out of sight, out of mind.

Audry Perez (21-40). Not hitting as well as last year despite being back in Double-A.

In conclusion

Colin Walsh is probably the fastest riser who didn't make the cut this month. Steven Hill and Tyler Lyons could make the list with a little more consistency.

Hector Hernandez and Anthony Ferrara are two lefties with a lot of potential. Both are pitching well but their inability to keep their walk totals down keeps them off my list.

The Cards have a slew of relievers who could break into this list in the next month or two. Sam Freeman, Nick Greenwood, and Dean Kiekhefer are all vying to be the LOOGY in waiting for the major league club.

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