MLB April All-Stars: Separating MVP candidates, breakout players and early flukes

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The season didn't begin until April 7, so it's a shorter than normal April -- but it's never too early to dig into some of the numbers. Let's pick our April All-Stars for each league and see how many of those players off to hot starts this month might still be under All-Star consideration come July.

American League

Catcher: Salvador Perez, Royals

Perez's transformation from free-swinging hacker with moderate power to free-swinging hacker with enormous power has been one of the unlikeliest developments of the past couple of seasons. It's really quite amazing to watch: He just goes up there and takes the biggest, hardest swing you can imagine, swings at almost everything and when he connects ... boom.

He tied for the AL lead with 48 home runs in 2021, and according to a quirky Statcast measurement that projects the same home runs to other parks, he would have hit 60 for the White Sox, Mets or Reds. Given that he DHs when he's not catching, he's a threat to once again lead the league in home runs.

Legit All-Star? He's already a seven-time All-Star and six-time starter. Yasmani Grandal and Mike Zunino, who had strong offensive seasons in 2021, are both struggling, so Perez is pretty much a lock to start again.