MLB MVP race 2022: Aaron Judge leads for AL MVP, Francisco Lindor makes NL push

Who will win MLB MVP in 2022? Los Angeles Angels two-way phenom Shohei Ohtani won AL MVP and Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Bryce Harper took home his second NL MVP honor in 2021.

Major League Baseball is the only American professional sport that wards two MVP awards, one to each conference. It allows two players to take home a prestigious honor, joining some of the best players in MLB history with the coveted award on their trophy case.

Bookmark this page for updates on the MLB MVP race throughout the season, including the latest odds and analysis.

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AL MVP watch: Shohei Ohtani, Yordan Alvarez far behind Aaron Judge

MLB: Home Run Derby
Gary Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Here is Sportsnaut’s breakdown of the 2022 MLB MVP race so far. Each candidate is ranked based on a variety of factors. Those factors include stats, team performance, lineup factors and probability of the overall production being sustained.

MLB stats as of August 27

AL MVP race

Pos: Player AVG/OBP/SLG OPS Home Runs RBI wRC+ fWAR
1. Aaron Judge .297/.397/.665 1.063 49 109 197 8.1
2. Shohei Ohtani .262/.353/.510 .863 27 75 138 6.3
3. Rafael Devers .300/.357/.554 .912 25 65 150 4.7
4. Jose Ramirez .283/.355/.545 .899 25 104 150 5.2

Aaron Judge, New York Yankees

The AL MVP race is over. Aaron Judge is going to break Roger Maris’ home run record in what can only be described as one of the most remarkable seasons in recent memory. This isn’t simply about a hot first half of the season. Judge leads MLB in FanGraphs’ Wins Above Replacement (3.3) since the All-Star Break with a 19.3% walk rate and 16 home runs. The only question is how close he will be to unaninmous MLB MVP.

Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels

For the reigning AL MVP, Shohei Ohtani should feel about his season individually. He put himself in consideration for the AL Cy Young Award, will finish with 30-plus homers and he really turned things around at the plate after a cold start in 2022. In another year, there would be a great argument for him to be a back-to-back winner.

Rafael Devers, Boston Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox likely won’t be making the playoffs, but Rafael Devers did everything in his power to make it happen. He became one of the best players in MLB this year, at teams even making a case for second-place AL MVP votes. The bigget takeaway from Devers’ season will be how badly the Red Sox failed to strike when they should have on an extension.

Jose Ramirez, Cleveland Guardians

Jose Ramirez makes it back onto our MLB MVP ballot, but he’s in a practical tie with the likes of Yordan Alvarez and Jose Altuve. After destroying baseballs early in the year, Ramirez now ranks 24th in the American League for fWAR (0.8) since the All-Star Break. Right now, Cleveland’s placement atop the AL Central and Ramirez’s season-long stats are earning him votes.

NL MVP race: Paul Goldschmidt jumps over Nolan Arenado

MLB: St. Louis Cardinals at Chicago Cubs
Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
Pos: Player AVG/OBP/SLG OPS Home Runs RBI wRC+ fWAR
1. Paul Goldschmidt .338/.419/.633 1.052 33 105 194 6.8
2. Nolan Arenado .300/.365/.557 .921 26 82 157 6.4
3. Freddie Freeman .326/.399/.520 .919 16 80 156 5.7
4. Francisco Lindor .268/.346/.449 .795 21 85 128 5.5

MLB stats as of August 27

Paul Goldschmidt, St. Louis Cardinals

Paul Goldschmidt led our NL MVP race for much of the summer until Nolan Arenado surged ahead in recent weeks. Now on pace to compete for the Triple Crown in the National League, the St. Louis Cardinals first baseman moves back on top. It’s thanks to another torrid stretch at the plate for the 34-year-old, blasting nine home runs with 27 RBI and a 234 wRC+ and .376/.461/.765 slash in August.

Nolan Arenado, St. Louis Cardinals

While Nolan Arenado slips down the MLB MVP ballot heading into September, it’s through no fault of his own. He demolished baseballs this month, posting a .341/.394/.694 slash line with 22 RBI and a 199 wRC+ in August. On top of that, he’s playing some phenomenal defense at third base to strengthen his overall value. A career-best season frol Goldschmidt just makes the difference.

Freddie Freeman, Los Angeles Dodgers

The discussions months ago about whether or not Freeman is happy with the Los Angeles Dodgers is gone. He sports a .338/405/.492 slash line since the ASB, carrying a 1.4 fWAR along with it. As the engine on the best team in baseball, Freeman is certainly going to earn some NL MVP votes.

Francisco Lindor, New York Mets

This is the version of the player the New York Mets dreamed about and signed to that lucrative extension. Francisco Lindor boasts the third-highest fWAR (2.1) in the second half, playing exceptional defense at shortstop and pairing it with a .326/.405/.496 slash line and 19 RBI. It’s certainly too late for him to win the award, but a strong finish will keep him top-five.

Related: Top MLB free agents of 2023 – Aaron Judge, Nolan Arenado surge as MVP candidates

Check below for our evaluation of the MLB MVP predictions and race heading into the season.

MLB MVP odds 2022: Who will win Most Valuable Player?

MLB: Boston Red Sox at Washington Nationals
Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Who will win MLB MVP in 2022? We look at the latest odds from BetMGM, looking at the top candidates who could win the AL and NL MVP awards this season. While he’s not quite as elite in that spot defensively, he still earned a 3.2 Defensive rating from FanGraphs with three Defensive Runs Saved in 211 innings. On top of the defensive value, Edman is the best base runner in MLB and he’s outstanding atop the lineup. Combine the defense, versatility, base-running impact and offensive production together, it gives you an MVP candidate.

Related: 2022 MLB predictions

2022 American League MVP odds

Player Odds:
Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels +350
Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels +400
Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Toronto Blue Jays +500
Luis Robert, Chicago White Sox +1800
Aaron Judge, New York Yankees +2000
Rafael Devers, Boston Red Sox +2000
Wander Franco, Tampa Bay Rays +2000
Byron Buxton, Minnesota Twins +2000
Jose Ramirez, Cleveland Guardians +2500
Yordan Alvarez, Houston Astros +2500
Kyle Tucker, Houston Astros +2500
Jose Altuve, Houston Astros +3000
Bo Bichette, Toronto Blue Jays +3000
Carlos Correa, Minnesota Twins +4000
  • Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels – It’s understandable why Ohtani is the favorite to win AL MVP. It’s not even because he is the reigning award recipient. Ohtani can be among the MLB leaders in home runs and OPS, all while posting a stellar ERA with a high strikeout rate. With that said, we haven’t seen a back-to-back MLB MVP since 2012-’13 (Miguel Cabrera) and Ohtani comes with injury risks. However, he is the best player in baseball and it comes as no surprise he is favorite for MLB MVP.
  • Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels – Turning 31 in August, Mike Trout last played 140-plus games in 2018. That’s not to say he can’t win AL MVP, this is still the best position player in MLB. However, Ohtani’s presence could lead to the teammates splitting votes. So, Trout won’t be the AL MVP candidate we’re betting on right now.
  • Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Toronto Blue Jays –Among the favorites to win AL MVP, Guerrero Jr. would be our pick. The expanded MLB playoffs mean missing the postseason, a negative for some voters, won’t be an issue. So, you have a slugger capable of winning the AL batting title and leading the league in home runs. Frankly, Vladito is a legitimate threat for the Triple Crown. Ranked third in AL MVP odds, Guerrero Jr. is our favorite to win the award.
  • Aaron Judge, New York Yankees – It all comes down to durability for Aaron Judge. He played 155 games in 2017 and finished with 55 homers and 128 RBIs. Ever since, IL stints have become a yearly problem. The odds make him a reasonable bet, but the likelihood he stays healthy is low.
  • Rafael Devers, Boston Red Sox – Devers will certainly make a case for AL MVP if he maintains his production from 2021 (38 home runs, 214 runs produced, .538 SLG), but he needs the Red Sox to win the AL East. Otherwise, the division winner will likely have a player more deserving.
  • Wander Franco, Tampa Bay Rays – There’s a very strong possibility Franco wins an AL MVP in his career. However, a 21-year-old without great power (right now) and who won’t be competing for a batting crown this year, probably doesn’t finish top-10 in AL MVP voting.
  • Luis Robert, Chicago White Sox – No one should be expecting the version of Robert we saw in the second half of the 2021 season. The .350/.389/.622 slash line simply isn’t achievable for a player with a high strikeout rate. However, Robert is fully capable of hitting 30 home runs with 20 steals and 160 runs produced. If the White Sox finish near the top of the AL, Robert could take home MVP. Bet on him now while the odds are still great.
  • Darkhorse: Kyle Tucker, Houston Astros (+3500) – The Astros will be strong favorites to win the AL West and Tucker proved for a large stretch of the season he can be the best player in the lineup. Capable of hitting 30-plus home runs with 20 steals, 100 RBIs and a high OPS, Tucker’s odds make him a great bet for MLB MVP.

2022 National League MVP odds

Player Odds:
Juan Soto, Washington Nationals +300
Ronald Acuna Jr., Atlanta Braves +700
Bryce Harper, Washington Nationals +900
Mookie Betts, Los Angeles Dodgers +1000
Freddie Freeman, Los Angeles Dodgers +1200
Trea Turner, Los Angeles Dodgers +1600
Francisco Lindor, New York Mets +2000
Fernando Tatís Jr., San Diego Padres +2500
Matt Olson, Atlanta Braves +2500
Austin Riley, Atlanta Braves +3000
Nolan Arenado, St. Louis Cardinals +3000
Pete Alonso, New York Mets +3000
Christian Yelich, Milwaukee Brewers +3300
  • Juan Soto, Washington Nationals – Soto is the best hitter in baseball and it’s not really a debate. The Nationals won’t win their division, but Soto can post an OBP near .500 with 30-plus home runs and carry this team to a Wild Card spot. If he does that, he’ll meet the very definition of MVP.
  • Fernando Tatís Jr., San Diego Padres – Similar to Ohtani and Judge, durability is the most important factor for Tatís Jr. Sadly, the point is already proven. Sidelined until June with a fractured wrist, Tatis Jr’s odds to win MLB MVP take a massive shot. Bet on someone else.
  • Ronald Acuña Jr., Atlanta Braves – Acuña should be fully recovered from his torn ACL on Opening Day, but there is always the possibility that he isn’t quite the same level of athlete in his first year back. More time spent at DH with fewer steals could hurt his chances, but a 30-30 season also might win NL MVP.
  • Bryce Harper, Philadelphia Phillies – Voter fatigue is real. As a two-time NL MVP, Harper has history working against him. Few believe the Phillies are the team to beat in their division and that will also work against Harper. We’re not willing to bet on him winning it this year, but not because he won’t be deserving.
  • Freddie Freeman, Los Angeles Dodgers –After signing with the Dodgers, there’s a strong case to be made for Freeman to win MVP outside the current favorites. He’s going to be in a phenomenal lineup and playing for the best team in MLB. If the Dodgers get 30-plus home runs and a .950 OPS out of him, voters might choose him over a repeat (Harper) and a player on a non-contender (Soto).
  • Mookie Betts, Los Angeles Dodgers – Playing for the best team in baseball in a big market, Betts already boasts two huge factors working in his favor. We haven’t seen the best version of him as of late, but the talent to hit 30 home runs with a .280-plus average for the No.1 team in the NL could sway voters.
  • Francisco Lindor, New York Mets – It seems Mets fans are putting money on the line to get those NL MVP odds up for Lindor. It’s a bad bet. We haven’t seen that 30-homer and 20-steal player since 2019 and nothing suggests it’s returning. Spend those dollars betting on other darkhorse MLB MVP candidates.
  • Matt Olson, Atlanta Braves – Moving from Oakland to Atlanta is a huge boost for Olson’s shot at an MLB MVP award. He’s a great bet to hit 40-plus home runs and drive in 100-plus RBI. If you combine that with Gold Glove defense at first for a division champ, that will earn a lot of MVP votes.
  • Darkhorse: Max Scherzer, New York Mets (+4000) – The new face of the Mets’ rotation, Scherzer will be asked to do even more for the reasons mentioned above. He’s in the big market, will post numbers worthy of a Cy Young award and the extra attention for a potential division champ might earn him MVP.

When is MLB MVP announced?

MLB: American League at National League
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

MLB announced the 2021 AL and NL MVP recipients on Thursday, Nov. 19, 2021. An official announcement date for the 2022 MLB awards isn’t determined as of March, but the expectation is both MLB MVP awards will be handed out in November.

Related: MLB games today – MLB schedule, TV info, scores, and key dates

Recent MLB MVP winners

MLB: Philadelphia Phillies at Atlanta Braves
Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Shohei Ohtani won AL MVP in 2021, taking home all 30 first=place votes. Bryce Harper won his second MVP award, receiving 17 first-place votes.

Here are some of the past MLB MVP winners.

  • 2021 – AL MVP – Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels
  • 2021 – NL MVP – Bryce Harper, Philadelphia Phillies
  • 2020 – AL MVP – José Abreu, Chicago White Sox
  • 2020 – NL MVP – Freddie Freeman, Atlanta Braves
  • 2019 – AL MVP – Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels
  • 2019 – NL MVP – Cody Bellinger, Los Angeles Dodgers
  • 2018 – AL MVP – Mookie Betts, Boston Red Sox
  • 2018 – NL MVP – Christian Yelich, Milwaukee Brewers
  • 2017 – AL MVP – Jose Altuve, Houston Astros
  • 2017 – NL MVP – Giancarlo Stanton, Miami Marlins

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This article was originally published on and is republished here with permission.

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