Juan Soto May 2024

2024 AL MVP Ladder: Soto, Witt & Henderson Feature

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Barely a month into the MLB season and there are already 2024 AL MVP candidates emerging. The early contenders for AL MVP aren’t necessarily players we would have predicted before the season.

There aren’t that many previous MLB award winners among them. But that is exactly what has made the start of the season interesting.

Top 5 Early-Season AL MVP Candidates

Obviously, voting for MVP is many months away. There will certainly be plenty of twists and turns between now and then. However, we still felt it would be interesting to take a look at the top 2024 AL MVP candidates during the first part of the season.

Tyler O’Neill

Nobody could have foreseen Tyler O’Neill getting off to this kind of start. He’s always been known more for his defense than his bat, but being in Boston has woken up his bat in a big way.

O’Neill is among the league leaders in home runs while also producing a batting average that’s hovering around .300. Even a brief stint on the IL with a concussion hasn’t slowed down O’Neill. The obvious caveat is that nobody expected this from him, so he’ll have to prove that he can keep it going. His RBI total is also criminally low for a player with that many home runs. But he’s at least put himself on the MVP radar.


Bobby Witt Jr.

Most expected Bobby Witt Jr. to perform at an MVP level, but we perhaps didn’t expect it to happen this soon. He’s hitting well over .300 and has become an extra-base machine. Witt isn’t going to lead the American League in home runs, but he has a chance to lead the league in both doubles and triples.

If that ends up happening, Witt will have a compelling case for MVP, especially if he ends up competing for the batting title as well. While these are early days for the youngster, nobody would be surprised if Witt is able to perform at his current level all year.

Gunnar Henderson

With 10 home runs early in the season for the first-place Orioles, Gunnar Henderson is putting himself in the MVP conversation.

At just 22 years old, Henderson is building off of last year’s success and taking another big step forward in his development. He’s also doing so as Baltimore’s everyday shortstop. If Henderson is able to bring value to the Orioles defensively, he’ll give his MVP hopes a huge boost.

Juan Soto

After his fast start with the Yankees this year, Juan Soto is back on track to becoming one of the greatest outfielders in MLB history. He’s collecting extra-base hits at a high rate, batting over .300, and is among the league leaders in both home runs and RBI.


We’ve known for years that Soto is one of the best pure hitters in baseball. After an up-and-down tenure with the Padres, Soto is once again looking like an elite hitter. Keep in mind that the guy is still only 25. He should be coming into his prime right about now. That’s why nobody should be surprised at his performance and why nobody should be surprised if he ends up winning MVP this season.

Salvador Perez

Who could have predicted that Salvador Perez would be putting together one of his best seasons at age 33? Who could have predicted the Royals would have two MVP candidates?

But that’s exactly what’s happening in 2024.

Perez is leading the American League in RBI while also boasting one of the league’s top batting averages. He’s also as steady as ever behind the plate while managing a young and emerging Kansas City rotation. Perez is more valuable than his impressive offensive numbers indicate, which is why he looks like a serious MVP candidate right now.

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