Like many of our friends throughout the SB Nation network, we are simulating the 2020 MLB season with MLB The Show 20. While we are unable to stream the games as they would otherwise be happening, we will try to get ahead of the curve and post about the games on the same day they would have taken place. Now, onto the recap!
Earlier this week, we touched on one of the bigger issues plaguing this year’s version of MLB The Show. Outfielders fail to “lock on” to fly balls on a consistent basis, resulting in some comical (and frustrating) results. Minnesota Twins reliever Trevor May ranted about the game while streaming on Twitch recently, and the team behind the game is now looking to make improvements. May’s Twins benefitted from some of the game’s oddities on Friday (well, sorta) when they jumped out to an early lead and beat the simulated Tigers 8-0 at Target Field.
The big blow occurred in the second inning. Byron Buxton hit a routine fly ball to left with the bases loaded and two outs, but Harold Castro couldn’t make the play, allowing all three runners to score. Buxton was thrown out at the plate on a great relay, but the damage was done. In normal circumstances, the game would still be scoreless; here, it’s 3-0 Minnesota.
Buxton was on the receiving end of another outfield blunder in the fifth when Cameron Maybin couldn’t come up with a ball in right field, and it rolled to the wall. Maybin then had trouble picking up the ball — another known bug in the game — and Buxton rounded the bases, putting the Twins up 4-0.
From there, it was all academic. The Twins added four more runs, including two actual home runs, while the Tigers managed just three hits all game. Twins starter Devin Smeltzer benefitted from some other strange occurrences — namely, consecutive fielder’s choice outs on bloop hits with a runner on first — but mixed his pitches effectively to keep Detroit off balance (although being frustrated as all hell at the game didn’t help).
The loss brings the Tigers under .500 for the first time this season, at 9-10.
Since this was technically Friday’s game, we will have two more videos and recaps headed your way this weekend — once I decide I want to jump back into the game, that is. The Tigers are then in action all next week, with a four game series against the New York Yankees followed by three against the San Diego Padres.