Just Baseball’s Top 10 Hitter Power Rankings: May 2024

It's time for the inaugural edition of Just Baseball's Hitter Power Rankings. Who cracked the top 10 for the month of May?

Mookie Betts hitter power rankings
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 15: Mookie Betts #50 of the Los Angeles Dodgers bats in the fifth inning during the game between the Washington Nationals and the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on Monday, April 15, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Owens/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

Who are the 10 best hitters in the game right now? That’s a loaded question, but we’re going to do our best to try and answer it.

This list transcends leagues, including both American and National League entries. And what’s the method behind the rankings madness? Numbers don’t lie, and neither does the performance of the teams these hitters represent, so expect to see plenty of hitters from top teams on here.

With all that in mind, here are Just Baseball’s Top 10 Hitter Power Rankings for May 2024.

(All stats through May 15, 2024)

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10. Bobby Witt Jr.

2024 Stats: 187 plate appearances, .298/.366/.509, 5 HR, .377 wOBA, 142 wRC+

I saw Bobby Witt Jr. in person this season at Kauffman Stadium, and his speed is no joke (15 steals already in 2024).

Don’t be deceived into thinking he’s a one-trick pony, though; he’s turned into quite the well-rounded hitter.

Last season, Witt was worth nearly 6.0 fWAR while becoming the only Royals player to reach the 30-30 plateau (30 homers, 30 steals) in franchise history. The 23-year-old shortstop hasn’t even hit his prime yet, either, which is tantalizing to think about.

At this rate, Witt is well on his way to another 30-30 campaign while keeping his overall offensive production well above league average for a Kansas City team that has, so far, exceeded expectations.

9. Elly De La Cruz

2024 Stats: 169 plate appearances, .260/.362/.500, 9 HR, .378 wOBA, 141 wRC+

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When you think of Elly De La Cruz, you don’t immediately think about hitting. You think of raw tools, like his elite speed and enormous power, that place the young Cincinnati Reds shortstop among the most riveting players to watch in baseball today.

But De La Cruz has made important strides so far in 2024 as he looks to become a more well-rounded hitter.

Strikeouts are undoubtedly a hole in De La Cruz’s game (he’s still whiffing 32% of the time, down only marginally from his 33.7% strikeout rate in 2023).

Fortunately, though, the swing and miss hasn’t caught up to his overall offensive production yet this season (though it absolutely could) given his well-above-average 144 wRC+ to this point. And those nine home runs aren’t to be ignored: His power is real.

The 22-year-old will never hit for an exceptionally high average, but when you have his combination of skills, you don’t need to. De La Cruz’s play speaks for itself when he’s at his best, and that’s what we’ve seen in 2024.

8. Alec Bohm

2024 Stats: 175 plate appearances, .333/.400/.526, 4 HR, .397 wOBA, 162 wRC+

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Alec Bohm has always been a capable hitter, but the Phillies’ third baseman has elevated his game to new heights in 2024.

In a stacked lineup that features shiny names like Bryce Harper, Kyle Schwarber, and J.T. Realmuto, Bohm now stands above them all for the team with baseball’s best record.

Bohm’s emergence also comes at a time when the Phillies need the rest of the lineup to step up as Trea Turner tends to an injury.

He’s never hit for much power, but it doesn’t matter when Bohm has developed into one of baseball’s most well-rounded hitters.

7. William Contreras

2024 Stats: 191 plate appearances, .352/.429/.521, 5 HR, .415 wOBA, 171 wRC+

It’s time to start putting some respect on William Contreras’s name. He is now firmly out of his brother Willson’s shadow and a legitimate budding star for the Milwaukee Brewers.

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We always knew the younger Contreras, who also catches, had talent. But 2024 has proven to be his breakout year so far.

Contreras leads all catchers in batting average (.352), on-base percentage (.429) doubles (13) and OPS (.950), and those numbers also place him among the league’s top hitters, not just at his position. Still, the fact that he is a backstop only makes his hit tool more impressive given the lack of quality hitters that position typically produces.

6. Gunnar Henderson

2024 Stats: 180 plate appearances, .264/.339/.553, 12 HR, .382 wOBA, 152 wRC+

The Baltimore Orioles took both Adley Rutschman and Gunnar Henderson in the first two rounds of the 2019 MLB Draft. Rutschman is now one of the game’s top catchers, while Henderson routinely makes lists like these.

It’s pretty incredible.

Henderson won last year’s American League Rookie of the Year Award and is a strong early candidate for the league’s MVP honors in 2024. And if he were to win said MVP, the 22-year-old would become just the sixth player in MLB history to capture those two awards within his first two seasons.

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So, in other words? It won’t be long until Henderson occupies a top-five spot on these rankings and stays there.

5. Kyle Tucker

2024 Stats: 183 plate appearances, .278/.401/.596, 13 HR, .428 wOBA, 182 wRC+

The Houston Astros have been a surprise disappointment to begin 2024, but that hasn’t stopped Kyle Tucker from mashing.

Tucker entered the league with massive potential, but it didn’t quite feel like he had put it all together, despite strong statistical output over the last several seasons. That’s made him one of the more underrated players in baseball during his big league tenure.

The 2024 season looks like a new beginning, however, as Tucker ranks fourth in MLB in OPS (.997) while currently leading baseball in home runs (13).

If this is the year Kyle Tucker truly becomes one of the game’s top five hitters (like he has been so far), Houston likely won’t have problems for much longer.

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4. Marcell Ozuna

2024 Stats: 164 plate appearances, .329/.409/.629, 12 HR, .444 wOBA, 189 wRC+

Marcell Ozuna has been a solid player for a long time, but he’s clearly found another gear in 2024.

The Braves lineup has been missing some of its thump at times this season; most notably, Ronald Acuña Jr., Matt Olson and Austin Riley are all having down years. Through it all, however, Ozuna has been a consistent force when Atlanta has needed one.

The 33-year-old ranks second in all of MLB with a 1.038 OPS, trailing only Shohei Ohtani. His 12 long balls also rank second in baseball, tied with Gunnar Henderson, Josh Naylor and Ohtani.

It’s scary to think about the Braves’ lineup flipping the switch at a moment’s notice. And when they do, Ozuna figures to still be in the middle of it all.

3. Juan Soto

2024 stats: 196 plate appearances, .313/.413/.534, 9 HR, .412 wOBA, 172 wRC+

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A trade to the New York Yankees has breathed new life into Juan Soto in 2024, who clearly looks at home playing under the bright lights of Yankee Stadium.

Soto wasn’t bad by any means as a San Diego Padre, but something felt off about his tenure with the Friars. Perhaps it was the fact that he was surrounded by other superstars, or that he really didn’t like playing out west.

Regardless, Soto’s early returns in 2024 have been nothing short of stellar, and the Yankees will go as far as he and Aaron Judge can take them.

2. Mookie Betts

2024 Stats: 204 plate appearances, .345/.441/.563, 7 HR, .438 wOBA, 188 wRC+

No one should be surprised to see Mookie Betts placed this high on our power rankings.

The Dodgers’ outfielder-turned-middle infielder has been one of baseball’s best hitters on a yearly basis. The only question regarding Betts’ season at this point is whether he’ll be able to top his outstanding 2018 MVP campaign.

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Even if he ultimately isn’t able to replicate that level of production, though, he’s well on his way toward winning a second MVP.

1. Shohei Ohtani

2024 Stats: 193 plate appearances, .361/.427/.680, 12 HR, .471 wOBA, 211 wRC+

It probably wouldn’t be the worst idea for Shohei Ohtani to focus on hitting for the remainder of his MLB career. All you have to do is glance at the above stat line to see why.

Not only does Ohtani capture the top spot on our first-ever hitter power rankings, he probably doesn’t relinquish it the rest of the way, either. At least not if he keeps hitting at a pace that resembles this current one.

Ohtani leads all of MLB in OPS (1.107) and slugging percentage (.680), and he’s also second in baseball in home runs behind only Kyle Tucker. There’s just no other player, let alone any other hitter, like Ohtani in today’s game.

At the end of the day, there’s simply no explanation for how Shohei is this good – we just have to embrace it.

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