Sony’s MLB The Show series has been coasting on its past success for a few years now, but the 2019 version has finally broken that slump by introducing some substantially improved modes on top of the usual fine-tuning and polish. Yes, the core gameplay is very familiar and Franchise Mode remains nearly identical to last year’s, but Road to the Show serves as the culmination of years of improvements and a new mode, March to October, is a novel way to experience the MLB season.
One of the areas that sees the most improvement in 2019 is defensive play, which has often been considered a weaker part of the MLB The Show’s gameplay in recent years. In the past, issues like animation oddities and a lack of player variety made me eager to get back up to bat. Most of these problems have been addressed this year, most obviously because color-coded fielding icons now clearly indicate how good a player is at fielding his position. Gold indicates an elite fielder, while gray and blue icons let you know you might be dealing with an error-prone defensive liability.