The launch date announcement came alongside the cover athlete reveal. New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge will grace the cover. Judge is the first New York Yankees player to appear on the cover in the game’s 13-year history, and the first player to do so this early in his career. His rise to cover stardom makes sense, though. Judge broke Major League Baseball’s record for home runs by a rookie, belting an unprecedented 52 homers to lead the American League during the regular season. He was selected to the All-Star game in his rookie campaign, and took home the Home Run Derby trophy.
Meanwhile, Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Marcus Stroman will appear on the cover of the Canadian version of the game.
Sony also announced that players can gain early admittance to the ballpark by pre-ordering the game. Those who pre-order through the PlayStation Store or GameStop will be able to start playing The Show 18 four days early on March 23.
A pre-order from the PlayStation Store will net you 10 standard card packs and a legendary card for use in the Diamond Dynasty mode, along with 5,000 stubs (in-game currency). You can also get instant access to Aaron Judge in MLB The Show 17 with a pre-order from the PlayStation Store. A GameStop pre-order will score you 15 standard card packs and a legendary card.
As usual, Sony will offer multiple special editions of the game. Beyond the standard $60 base game, the MVP edition will go for $70 and includes additional packs, stubs, other goodies, and a steel book case. The digital deluxe version ($100, only available through the PlayStation Store) includes 20 standard packs, 11,000 stubs, and other in-game bonuses, while The All Rise edition — riffing off of Judge’s name — comes packaged in a steel book case, includes a snapback cap, 10 standard packs, 11,000 stubs, and a few other in-game add-ons. The All Rise edition looks to be exclusive to GameStop for $100.
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