It’s been a week now since the new edition of the hugely popular game MLB The Show is officially on the shelves of various stores. This was particularly anticipated, while for the very first time, the game was ported to Xbox consoles as well as to the consoles of the new generation.
I won’t hide from you that myself, I have found myself spending many hours in front of the game since its release.
Among the panoply of people waiting for the release of the new edition of the most popular baseball simulation game on the market is a certain Bo Bichette. The young Jays shortstop has been a fan of the series since his childhood and, again this year, was very happy to get his hands on the 2021 edition.
He also gave a generous interview to theScore on this subject.
While reading this text, I especially remembered a very interesting aspect approached by Bichette: as the game emphasizes the personality of the players and on celebrations which are specific to them (for example, the bat flip by Fernando Tatis Jr.), it allows fans to discover these personalities and, at the same time, increase the popularity of the sport.
It is also a phenomenon that I myself have had the chance to observe. I am thinking in particular of four people around me who, although they had never been interested in baseball before the game’s release, bought the most recent edition of the game. Needless to say, they now enjoy baseball and are supporters of some players with more extravagant personalities (Tatis Jr., Francisco Lindor, etc.)
Because yes, for the uninitiated, a game played in MLB The Show is the most faithful possible representation of a game in real life. Players (almost) all have their exact batting position, their exact mound motion, and the specific gear they wear in real life. The various faces are also scanned to allow players to come to life in the game.
However, as in any sports game, one aspect in particular gives rise to its share of debate: the odds attributed to the players. And according to Bichette, the game’s developers disrespected the young Jays. When the principal concerned was asked for his opinion on the marks awarded to his teammates (the only player in the Toronto squad who is ranked among the “diamond” players, the league’s elite, being Kirby Yates), here is what that he replied:
Oh yes, it’s 10 0% obvious that several players on this team would have deserved better odds. However, it is up to us to prove it with our performances on the pitch to see them increase in the game.
In short, Bo Bichette is very happy to see that video games allow baseball to increase its popularity. Once again, it is by putting the personalities of the players at the forefront that this will be done, and MLB The Show 21 strikes for 1,000 in this chapter.
MLB has been realizing this for a few years as well, as can be seen with the most recent advertising campaigns. I am thinking in particular of the one where the slogan “Let the Kids Play” was put forward, and even that of this year (with the expression “Make it Major”)
If you ever want to get into baseball (or even introduce some of your loved ones to sports), MLB The Show is a great start. And who knows, maybe that’s how they will marvel at the feats of Fernando Tatis Jr. and become lifelong supporters of the sport!