MLB 14: The Show finally arrived for PlayStation 4, and it brings all the grandeur of the sport we've come to expect, from shutting out a batter in the top of the 9th to hitting a grand slam to get the crowd cheering.
All of the Major League Baseball teams are here, including whatever hometown favorite you wish to cheer for. However, if you really want to make an impact in the game in terms of scoring or working your way towards a championship, the local crew may not be the best choice.
To help get you started, we consulted with some baseball-oriented websites, as well as stats from the latest update to The Show, and produced a list of the 10 best teams to start with in the game. Some may surprise you (like the Rockies), but all of them deliver the kind of hard-hitting performance you’ll need to run the bases.
(Oh, by the way, Red Sox fans, we already knew your team was championship caliber, so we saved room for the "other" guys. You've still got a killer squad, tho. Great choice as well.)
Good luck, and watch your batting stance.
10. Cincinnati Reds
Despite stumbling out of the gate, the Reds are starting to come around as the summer season picks up. With decent batting stats led by Devin Mesoraco and some strong wins as of late, they could be quite the surprise heading into fall.
9. Atlanta Braves
The Braves didn't have a wonderful finish to their season last year (ending with a six game losing streak), but they're rolling into this one with a winning record and several great players to rely on. They may march into the playoffs yet.
8. St. Louis Cardinals
With a dynamic pitching squad and plenty of hard hitters in their line-up, the Cardinals should have no problem working their way into a good post-season. Just make sure you watch out for any pitching changes around the 7th inning or so. Keep a good eye on Adam Wainwright and Michael Wacha, just to be sure.
7. Texas Rangers
The Rangers always seem to put on a good, consistent show in the ballparks. Even though it suffered a sweep at the hands of the As recently, it's back on track towards a moderate winning record.
6. L.A. Dodgers
Los Angeles baseball is back in full swing with the Dodgers enjoying a resurgence of late. You can thank Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke and Dan Haren for that, along with the rest of the team that just wants to keep winning.
5. Colorado Rockies
After suffering a miserable, non-championship season last year, Colorado's back on track, with Carlos Gonzalez and Troy Tulowitzki hitting very well, and a fortified team backing them up in the field. They could be one of the bigger surprises this season if they stay on track.
4. Oakland A's
Did these guys watch Moneyball again recently? Because they seem to be back to their winning ways. Sonny Gray, Scott Kazir and Jesse Chavez are doing exceptionally well for the squad, and there are several other great players in the dugout as well. Never turn your back on the As!
3. Detroit Tigers
With one of the best records in the MLB right now, the Tigers continue to be a dominant team, especially after last year's performance. Whether on the field or at the plate, they deliver on all counts, and are a great team to take online against other friends. Just remember to appreciate your power hitters – we're looking at you, Miguel Cabrera.
2. Milwaukee Brewers
Even with all the things happening to the team right now – particularly Ryan Braun on the DL – the Brewers continue to remain positive on the field, with some great performances as of late.
1. San Francisco Giants
The Giants deliver once again, even early on in the season. The team has been on a good winning streak, and should continue its success in the months ahead. Behind the strength of several players, like Brandon Crawford, it's simply the best team you can turn to in the game, online or off. Pit them against another team on this list (or the Mets or Cubs) and watch the sparks fly.
No matter which team you use, you'll find plenty of power hitting, clutch plays and fantastic finishes to go around. Play ball!
MLB 14: The Show is available now for PlayStation 4, as well as PlayStation 3 and PS Vita.