On February 16th we had the opportunity to head over to Sony’s HQ and demo their upcoming release MLB 12 The Show for PlayStation 3. I was real pumped to give the game a try, but was more excited to meet cover athlete Adrian Gonzalez of the Boston Red Sox and star Yankees pitcher C.C. Sabathia. Two of the best players in the MLB + video games? Sign me up! Check out what both of them had to say along with the game’s screenshots and official release trailer.
COED: Can you just tell us why you’re here today and a little bit about the event?
CC: We’re here for MLB The Show 12, you know, a great game. I was happy to be a part of it with PlayStation and Adrian, so I’m glad to be here to support.
COED: I have a question that is a bit off topic. What did you think of your night at the American Museum of Natural History with your wife on Valentines Day?
CC: It was fun, we had a good time. It was a unique experience, I’m a big museum guy so it was a lot of fun to be able to be in there and get the whole tour.
COED: Do you consider yourself a gamer? Do you play a lot with your teammates?
CC: Yes, I would, and we play a lot. Gardy (Brett Gardner) plays a lot, Swish (Nick Swisher) plays a lot, we have some good battles. Russell Martin is really good at pretty much any game you put in front of him, so we have fun in the clubhouse. Video games take your mind off the game, you get something else to be mad about. We have a lot of fun, we play a lot of PlayStation and MLB 11 The Show and we also have an old school Nintendo, so we play RBI Baseball and Tecmo Bowl.
COED: Nice! So what is your go-to Nintendo game?
CC: Oh, RBI Baseball definitely, probably the second best baseball game of all time, after The Show, of course.
COED: How about non-sports video games?
CC: Call of Duty.
COED: What would you say your best video game is? Not necessarily your favorite, but what you are best at?
CC: Probably NBA 2K12
COED: So you can take Russell Martin in 2K12?
CC: Oh yeah. I can get him in that, he can beat me in FIFA, we have some battles in MLB The Show, but I can get him in 2K12.
COED: Are the Knicks your squad to play with?
CC: Lakers! I’m a Knicks fan, but I play with the Lakers.
COED: What would you say the main difference is in this year’s model of MLB The Show and last year’s?
CC: I just think the game-play is a lot easier. I’ve been playing this year’s game so far with infield assist mode on, just so I can get used to it and get used to catching the ball and things like that. The game-play and graphics and everything is a lot quicker, and I definitely like the pitching meter being back, that was a big thing for me and it makes a big difference.
COED: How do you like the PS Move technology with this game, do you find it fluid and easy to use?
CC: Yeah, it’s great, it is dead on and it makes it a lot of fun. I’m always switching it to make sure I’m hitting lefty with everybody.
COED: How was it playing head to head with Adrian back there, was that cool?
CC: Yeah it was cool to be able to get a chance to play against a guy that is definitely a lot easier pitching against in the game than in real life.
COED: Looking ahead to this season, are you excited about Michael Pineda coming in and getting some young blood in the rotation and maybe helping him out with the transition to New York?
CC: I am, but I don’t know if he needs any help, the guy is great. He throws 98, he’s a young kid and a big guy but the most impressive thing is that he throws strikes. He fills up the strike zone, and that is the biggest thing you can ask for from a guy like him. A guy who throws that hard that young, it’s definitely impressive.
COED: Last question, are you excited about this apparent new-found depth in the rotation, where it looks like you guys could go six pitchers deep?
CC: Yeah, I mean last year when we came into Spring Training and they said we only had two or three starters. We are coming in now and we have seven, and that’s definitely a good problem to have.
COED: First off, congratulations on your first video game cover appearance. How does it feel to be the cover athlete for the biggest baseball game out there?
AG: It’s really special, definitely a dream come true and a great honor.
COED: Last year you played in the All-Star Game and hit the only home run for the American League. Was that just an amazing feeling to be a part of that game?
AG: It was a great feeling, it was one of those things that you dream of while growing up as a kid.
COED: You spent a lot of your career in San Diego. What was it like transitioning from that market out to Boston?
AG: It’s a different market, there are ups and downs to every place you play. There’s obviously a lot more questions to be answered in Boston than there are in San Diego, but at the end of the day you’re just answering the same question more times in Boston. You play baseball, and just try to answer all the questions from the heart. Not all of them are taken great, and for the ones that are not you just move on because it’s about playing the game, not about what answers you gave.
COED: What is the biggest thing that you miss most about San Diego?
AG: I would say the food. I’m Mexican so you get really good Mexican food in San Diego. Where I go, it’s tacos every day and I know all the good spots.
COED: You’ve become one of the most respected hitters in all of baseball. How does that sort of expectation weigh on you?
AG: It doesn’t really weigh on me because I’m just going to go out there and have fun playing the game and try to be best I can be. Execution is part of the game and I get paid to execute. My goal is to execute every time and, the pitcher has the same goal, so hopefully I can execute more often than they can. I don’t see it as trying to put fear in or intimidate a pitcher, I see it as if you leave a ball out over the plate I’m going to hit it.
COED: Do you consider yourself a gamer? Do you play MLB The Show?
AG: I play the game, I wouldn’t say I spend a ton of time playing, but I do enjoy playing it.
COED: Are video games big in the Red Sox clubhouse?
AG: No, not so much. I think more guys played them when I was in San Diego because most of those guys were younger. There is a video game system in our clubhouse, but it’s not really played that much.
COED: Looking ahead to the season, what are you personally focusing on heading into 2012?
AG: Erasing everything from last year and just getting in the playoffs. I think that is the only thing that will really put 2011 out of the fans’ minds. There is really no other thing to focus on other than starting the season and playing great, and getting into the playoffs and winning a World Series.
COED: Are you excited to start working with new manager Bobby Valentine?
AG: Yeah, he’s fired up about the season and so are we. Just getting everything going is really exciting.
THE SHOW’S OFFICIAL RELEASE TRAILER