3 AL MVP Longshot Candidates That Could Overtake Shohei Ohtani

Tampa Bay Rays v Oakland Athletics
Tampa Bay Rays v Oakland Athletics / Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages

We’re now more than a month into the 2022 MLB season and things are beginning to take shape. As a result, a few AL MVP dark horse candidates have emerged to possibly challenge Shohei Ohtani for the crown. According to WynnBET Sportsbook, Ohtani is the current favorite at +200 to win his second MVP in a row. Let’s take a look at three long shots that could make a run at his title. 

Aaron Judge +900

The judge might not be a true dark horse, but he falls outside the top tier of players in this race. And it’s easy to see why. Despite leading the MLB in home runs, he is hitting a shade below .300 with 22 RBIs and an OPS of .982. Great numbers, but not quite on par with the likes of Ohtani, Trout, and Guerrero. His power is there, but he just needs to pick up the pace a bit when it comes to hitting balls that don’t leave the park. If he can put a few more balls into play, I think he joins the top guys on the odds board and could take over the top spot. 

Jose Ramirez +1000

Ramirez has a big advantage here as he bats in third on an offense that ranks fifth in the league in runs scored. As a result of this, Ramirez currently leads the MLB in RBIs with 30. He’s not a one-trick pony either and is hitting .297 with an OPS of .996 and seven home runs. He is slumping quite a bit right now, hitting just .18 in May after finishing March at .342. But he has the talent to regain his form and is only gaining value during this dry spell. 

Wander Franco +1500

strikeoutFranco was the youngest player on any MLB roster both this year and last year. One reason the youngster has seen so much success is the fact that he is one of the most patient hitters I've seen in a long time. I mean the guy doesn’t strike out. Franco currently ranks second in the MLB in strikeouts per at-bat. But he isn’t getting walked either with just five on the year. No, Franco has been raking so far in 2022 and ranks fifth in hits, ninth in at-bats, and 11th in runs scored. If he can keep batting above .300 with metrics like that, we could be witnessing the youngest MVP in history.