PLV All-Stars: April Category Leaders

Which players sit atop the PLV leaderboards in April?

The 2024 MLB season is already a month old, and the PLV leaderboards are now available in PL Pro. Thus, we thought we’d peek at April’s PLV leaders by category. As a reminder, the offensive PLV categories include:

  • Strikezone Judgement: The “correctness” of a hitter’s swings and takes, using the likelihood of a pitch being called strike (for swings) or a ball/HBP (for takes).
  • Decision Value: Modeled value (runs per 100 pitches) of a hitter’s decision to swing or take minus the modeled value of the alternative.
  • Contact Ability: A hitter’s ability to make contact (foul strike or BIP) above the contact expectation of each pitch.
  • Power: Modeled number of extra bases (xISO on contact) above a pitch’s expectation for each BBE.
  • Hitter Performance: Runs added per 100 pitches seen by the hitter (including swing/take decisions) after accounting for pitch quality.

We’ll also reveal the pitcher (minimum 400 pitches) with the highest PLV in MLB. For those new to the concept, PLV is the estimated value of all pitches based on their predicted outcomes (0-10, with 5 being the league average). For more on PLV or a refresher, check out the What is PLV? article.

Below are our category leaders through April. The number next to their name is their PLV rating for the category through April 30 (100 is average for hitters, 5.0 for pitchers). Batters needed 350 pitches faced to qualify, and pitchers needed 400 pitches thrown.


Strikezone Judgement: Marcus Semien (136)


Marcus Semien was among the best in Strikezone Judgement last year, so it’s no surprise to see him leading the way again early in 2024. He’s a master at recognizing strikes and making contact with them, as evidenced by his 93% Z-Con.

April Stats

He’s as consistent as anyone in this regard, making the right call on balls vs. strikes on three out of four pitches seen. The results aren’t always elite, but Semien’s approach is so sound that it makes him an extremely tough out.



Decision Value:  Juan Soto (143)


Juan Soto has led MLB in BB% for the past four seasons and will likely do so again in 2024. The Yankees’ slugger is a master of the strikezone, rarely chasing balls outside it and crushing those he swings at with an exit velocity near the top of the league.

April Stats

Soto is off to a great start with his new club and looks primed to set career highs in 2024. With arguably the best eye in the league and on the short list of players with the most power, Soto could post a +1.000 OPS for the first time since 2020.



Contact Ability:  Salvador Perez (138)


Salvador Perez is the most surprising name among our April PLV All-Stars. While his Contact Ability ratings were solid in 2023 (112), he wasn’t close to the best in MLB. The free-swinging catcher has cut his K% in half from 2023 without sacrificing power.

April Stats

Perez has been locked in all season, and opposing pitchers have induced far fewer whiffs than they are used to, as he’s making contact on pitches in and out of the zone. It’s unlikely to sustain at this level, but the veteran is showing he’s as dangerous as ever at the plate amid the Royals’ strong start.



Power: Shohei Ohtani (142)


Signing the biggest contract in MLB history and switching leagues hasn’t stopped Shohei Ohtani from doing what he does best: hitting the cover off the ball. The two-way star was second to Aaron Judge in the PLV Power rating last year, and he hasn’t skipped a beat since moving across town.

April Stats

As his Barrel% and Exit Velocity attest, Ohtani is squaring up as well as anyone in baseball. There is still room for improvement in his approach and plate discipline, but nobody has a higher Hard Contact % than Shohei.



Hitter Performance:  Mookie Betts (141)


Mookie Betts had an April for the ages. The Dodgers’ recently anointed shortstop led MLB in plate appearances, hits, runs, walks, batting average, OBP, and OPS. Thus, it’s unsurprising that he also led in the all-encompassing Hitter Performance category.

April Stats

Betts’s rolling HP curve looks like a reverse bell. He came out on fire, cooled a bit in mid-April, then finished the month strong. He’s been a PLV darling, ranking well above the norm in nearly every PLV category thus far.



Pitch Level Value (PLV):  Joe Ryan (5.50)


Joe Ryan is off to a solid start statistically but has pitched better than his 1-1 record and 3.37 ERA indicate.

April Stats

His xERA and FIP paint a better picture, and he’s among the league leaders in K% and BB%. He’s tossing strikes on nearly 70% of his offerings and generates whiffs 15% of the time. All four of his core pitches have been effective, especially his four-seamer, which has been among the best in baseball in April.




Scott Youngson

Scott is a SoCal native who, after two decades of fighting L.A. traffic, decided to turn his passion for fantasy sports into a blog - the now-defunct Fantasy Mutant. He currently writes for FantasyPros and Pitcher List and will vehemently defend the validity of the Dodgers' 60-game season championship.

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