The Score is currently running a tournament between 64 sports video games to see which one will emerge as the Greatest Sports Video Game of All-Time (Ever).

theScore.com has assembled a field of 64 classic and modern sports games and seeded them 1-thru-8 across eight divisions: Hockey, Basketball, Combat, Racing, Football, Soccer, Baseball and Miscellaneous.

All 64 of the candidates are legitimate contenders to the crown. However, as most of us are aware, there is only one true sport worth our time and attention, and as such, I’m curious if there’s anything close to a consensus on what the best baseball video game of all time is.

I’m not really much of a gamer. In fact, MLB 11: The Show was the first video game I purchased this Century. It should come as no surprise that I am horrible at it. However, I do have fond memories of RBI Baseball battles on the original Nintendo, as well as playing Tommy Lasorda Baseball on the Sega Genesis after school at a buddy’s house.

I’m sure that my fellow Getting Blankards have a far more informed opinion on baseball video gaming than I do, so let’s hear about it. What’s the best baseball video game, and why?

Comments (83)

  1. RBI Baseball for NES, no contest.

    • It was limited in graphics but the baseball game that was played the most during my formative years was Monday morning manager for the C64. You could plug in the stats for your own team. We plugged in the stats for my Fastball team and then added 3 all stars from all time to round things out. My buddy played an entire 162 game season, I made it through closer to 120 games.

  2. Baseball Stars for NES. It introduced a whole new level of customization to baseball video games and more importantly it was a lot of fun.

  3. Ea Sports MVP Baseball 2005 is the best baseball game of all time by some distance. An absolute timeless classic, it still is preferrable to the series’ produced today.

    Come back EA :’(

    • 2K Sports’ exclusive MLB rights contract is finished after this year, and it sounds like they’re not interested in renewing it. There’s still hope!

      Heck, EA could just re-release MVP 2005 with updated rosters and I’d buy that.

    • Agreed…this version of baseball was amazing. It was so amazing, that countless people continued to upgrade it with current rosters/parks/uniforms/stats up until a year or two ago. I remember playing a 2010 mod version of MVP Baseball 05.

    • the show is now as good or better than MVP, and copied its control mechanics.
      the pitching in 2k is the best in any baseball game ever. the MVP community died out once 2k started releasing for PC…and especially now that the game is overall passable.

    • Totally agree, MVP 2005 was the best baseball game – the set-up for controlling a franchise was the most in-depth any games gone. I have 2K11 for 360 and I still get annoyed by the simple things missing from it that were in MVP.
      Countless, Countless hours were lost to this game, in the best way possible

  4. Earl Weaver Baseball. For sure. Wish I could still play it :/

  5. Another vote for Baseball Stars!

  6. Base Wars. Caught in a rundown? Kill your way to safety!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkFLIkydW4Y

    • Base Wars ruled.

    • I was addicted to base wars. So good…. but probably not the best ‘baseball’ game. I think I like the original “The Show” the best for pure baseball game.

      Ken Griffy Jr on SNES is probably the runner up.

  7. Baseball Stars for sure

  8. The Show is a great modern game but, for pure entertainment value, I have to go with RBI Baseball

  9. NBA Jam or NHL 91, both for Sega Genesis.

    • Ummm… “However, as most of us are aware, there is only one true sport worth our time and attention, and as such, I’m curious if there’s anything close to a consensus on what the best baseball video game of all time is”

      Disqualified.

    • was there even an nhl 91? i didn’t think they had the license until 93…and they didn’t have ‘the move’ until 94. haha, so many goals.

  10. I second Baseball Stars for the NES. Balanced (excluding the Dream Team) and infinitely customizable! Ninja Black Sox! Also, in this game, it’s impossible to be leading for Ken Griffey to hit a home-run on balls thrown nine-feet off the plate. Not that I’m bitter or anything.

  11. Little League Baseball for the NES.

  12. the Ken Griffey Jr one for SNES

  13. MVP 2005. Runner-up would be Ken Griffey, Jr. Presents Major League Baseball, I suppose.

  14. Ken Griffey Junior game for SNES!

  15. Baseball Stars for NES. It’s not even close.

  16. I think “MLB The Show” Franchise is with out a doubt the best baseball games ever made. However, as a child here were some of my favourites:
    - RBI Baseball [NES]
    - Frank Thomas’ Big Hurt Baseball [SNES]
    - Ken Griffey Jr presents Major League Baseball [SNES]
    - Earl Weaver Baseball [PC]

  17. KGJ Major League Baseball was a lot of fun. Easy to play, fantastic sound clips of the kid, and hilarious animations

  18. I understand the love for some of the classic games, especially the ones that were really fun to play or that introduced new features. But if we’re talking about THE BEST baseball video game ever, it’s pretty much impossible to top MLB: The Show. The 2010 and 2011 versions were incredible, and it’s looking like the 2012 version will kick it up a notch.

  19. Ken Griffey for SNES was next level….the stat keeping alone made it amazing

    • except when you play though the majority of the season after renaming all the Jays and then the memory resets for some unknown reason.

  20. However, if you’re an old-school baseball on aesthetic only, Baseball Stars 2 for the NEO•GEO is a god among men.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YT71Eqy8bnQ

  21. MVP Baseball was awesome, but I’ll add World Series Baseball from Sega Genesis to the list.

    I also have fond memories of Triple Play 99, with A-Rod on the cover and Buck Martinez and Jim Hughson doing commentary.

  22. MVP 2005, without a doubt

  23. RBI BASEBALL [NES]
    KEN GRIFFEY BASEBALL [SNES]
    WORLD SERIES ’95 [SEGA]
    BASEBALL SIMULATOR 1000 [NES]

  24. I will add that, while MVP 2005 holds up extremely well, it is NOT superior to The Show. It’s just… not.

  25. My vote is with MVP 2005 hands-down. A classic, but still had some modern video gaming elements.
    Anyone ever play High Heat Baseball 1999? Larry Walker was so badass in that game. Every player on my team batted under .200, but he hit .567 with 77 taters.

  26. Baseball Stars. This is not up for debate.

  27. EA Sports MVP 2005 hands down.

  28. I’m on board with the High Heat crowd. That game or series of games was highly underrated and under publicized. The graphics were far from the best but the pitcher/batter interface along with the post at-bat possibilities were almost all included, something most baseball games of and before the early-2000s could not say.

  29. Super Action Baseball for Colecovision. I spent days playing that game.

  30. My childhood was bereft of any video baseball games. I grew up playing Asteroids, which to this day, is the best video game that ever was.

  31. Dusty Diamond’s All-Star Softball was really good for the NES. Sandlot baseball at its best with the focus on fun.

    Baseball Stars was also excellent in the same way.

    Though, I find it hard to argue that the best baseball game is whatever the most recent edition of MLB The Show is. It looks good. It plays well. Piles of modes. Road to the Show is a blast. It’s in a different category than the classic games, honestly.

    • Totally agree on both Dusty Diamond’s and Baseball Stars. I was wracking my brain for the softball title until I saw this. Fantastically fun game, unlike the realistic games now. I get to focused on developing prospects, trading, drafting, tinkering with lineups and pitching staffs.

      The NES games were great because they were just for fun!

  32. RBI baseball 2

    The first one had small fat guys. RBI baseball 2 was much better. It also had all the teams.

  33. MVP 2005 is in a league of its own.

    Ken Griffey Jr.’s Major League Baseball for the N64 is also pretty dear to my heart.

  34. Easily, Baseball Stars. I didn’t spend hours playing it, I spent months playing it.

    Sadaharu Oh. That is all.

  35. My vote goes to Hardball 5. It consumed so much of my time back in highschool. Great game.

  36. If it doesn’t come down to NHL 94 vs RBI Baseball I just won’t know up from down anymore.

  37. MVP Baseball hands down for anything not PS3 platform

  38. My vote is for Bases Loaded in NES.
    However, I’m ashamed to admit I’ve never actually played MVP Baseball 2005.

  39. I wish more games incorporated the paper, rock , scissors style of base stealing that Roger Clemons MVP baseball did. i’d play just to get close play at the bag for a zoom in shot.

  40. Base Wars for NES was also great… as long as you played against another person (vs CPU was horrible though).
    Plus, they had a Toronto team despite only having 12 teams available.

  41. Dusty Diamond All-Star Softball – NES – lame characters, bad graphics, poor controls – still awesome

  42. Either Baseball Stars, MVP 2005 or The Show. The unlockable Hall of famers and the possibility to sign them to your team on MVP 2005 was awesome… favourite feature ever.

  43. Super Baseball 2020 (robots) and Bad News Baseball (Rabbit-like critters) are the only acceptable answers, though I did forget about the Hardball series with Al Michaels.

    • I agree – Super Baseball 2020 was awesome: it had robots, cyborgs, and female players. You could literally be a hitting machine

  44. Ken Griffy Jr SNES. It was especially fun to screw over your friend if he didn’t know to get Jr.

  45. Big fan of Roger Clemens MVP Baseball for NES, if only for the hilariously obvious “imaginary” player names (Clemens being the only real player in the game). You could really win with guys like Joe Cartwright and Roberto Alamo on your team!

  46. Baseball Stars. Leaderboards, making players, contracts, feminism, the works!! Also taught you about the pain of losing data, when your game would inevitably get wiped. Still remember the music and silhouette shot of a player with a hobo sack on a stick when you released him/her.

  47. RBI was not a game it was a narcotic and I was gleefully addicted.

    I had a buddy who worked in a video arcade (to all you young ones I know you are asking what that is) and I used to come by at closing and we would play tournaments all night with 2 other guys. The pitching was so tough one mistake would usually cost you the game!!

  48. This has to be the most comments I have ever seen posted this quickly on one of your blogs. For the love of the game indeed!

  49. Baseball Simulator 1.000. It’s RBI Baseball with powerups IN SPACE.

  50. Top 3:

    EA MVP Baseball 2005.
    Base Wars
    Baseball Simulator 1.000 for NES

  51. RBI baseball. We used to make a drinking game of it called “Straight Pitch”, in which you can’t curve the ball at all. Before blacking out, the last thing you always heard was the ominous sound of “Man on base” (the music that, obviously, plays whenever there’s a man on base)

  52. Submitted for your consideration:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FaMVOSKojnw

    “Nolan Ryan Baseball” for the SNES, a bizarre port of a cartoonish Japanese baseball game featuring nameless teams, nameless players, strange rules and a vague association with a money-desperate Nolan Ryan

  53. MVP Baseball 2005. close second: NCAA 2007

  54. Baseball Stars for sure. I created Blue Jay teams to play against (destroy) the Boston Red Sox team i had created. Devo recreated the wall climbing catch a zillion times. It took over two winters of my childhood. Everything else is just a copy.

  55. My vote has to go to Ken Griffey Jr Presents Major League Baseball.

    The game play is as advanced as it could get at that point in the evolution of video games, and it is as fair a game as I’ve played in its ability to replicate exciting situations that arise during MLB games. Playoff series in this game are tooth and nail affairs, with really interesting outcomes usually.

    Plus it’s in the middle of the Mitchell Report era, lots of roided up sluggers in the game. It’s also tough to beat the occasional colour commentary made by Griffey himself (i.e. “Great play kid”, “He’s got a great glove”, “Man, this is a pitcher’s duel”).

  56. All-Star Baseball series on N64.

    The batting mechanic is still one of the best and their stadiums were amazing for the time they were created.

  57. Best intro to baseball stats, strategies and historical players was associated with the man who invented baseball – Tony LaRussa 2 on the PC.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W7xG6iJoBN0

    The unique thing was that the original game didn’t come with active player rosters; it came with historical players assigned to teams they were most associated with (Reggie in Oakland, not New York). And interestingly, the Yankees tended to suck because they had too many sluggers and no one to fit at the top of the lineup. Of course, you could edit every player, create your own players, and even create your own teams and leagues. And you could get active rosters on a patch disk from the software company for $10.

    This game, the Baseball Encycolpedia, and Bill James’s abstract… a Sabermaticians dream.

  58. My vote is for Ken Griffey Jr. Presents Major League Baseball for the SNES. Pete Rose Baseball for the Atari 7800 runs a close second. Pete Rose had pretty good graphics when it was released in 1989…hmm…I wonder why they never made a sequel?

    • Pete Rose: Pennant Fever was also on the PC. Clearly not enough people played it to understand that it was one of the greatest baseball games in the history of ever. Therefore, you all suck.

      Except Nells. Nells is apparently good people.

  59. Bases Loaded II for Nintendo is inagruably the greatest baseball game of all time. Anyone who says otherwise should die.

  60. Sports Talk Baseball for the Sega Genesis. One of the first games to have real player names and announcers. Dingers!

  61. Out of the Park for front office, MVP2005 for play, and Earl Weaver because you could actually get updated rosters for new years for like 8 bucks. Really wish you could still do that

  62. Baseball for Gameboy. First baseball you could play while sitting on the can, it’s simply impossible to top that!

  63. Loved a lot of these old games I’m reading in the comments, but anyone picking one of those as the best really needs to try The Show, it’s pretty much perfect. Customisation is incredible..if analog hitting is too hard change it to one button timing..adjust the sliders to change how the game plays, it’s incredible.

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