Pitching is the most important part of your defense in MLB The Show 20.
It requires precision and planning, making it a challenge for new players.
But pitching doesn't have to be the weakest part of your game. Even new players can master the mound with time.
Let's go over how to improve your pitching for MLB The Show 20.
Manage pitching interfaces
CONTROLS: Full Analog pitching interface gives players the most control
MLB The Show 20 features four pitching interfaces that adjust how you pitch.
There's a degree to personalization with pitching interfaces, so you need to find the right one for you. Each has different levels of control on where a pitch will end up and how fast it will go.
The easiest to use but least impactful pitching interface is Classic. In Classic you simply choose an exact spot in the zone for your pitch, and the pitch will end up somewhere around that zone. Your placement has little to no impact on where the pitch actually goes, which makes it the worst for players trying to improve.
READ MORE: MLB The Show 20: How to improve your hitting
The next interface the default mode, Meter, which is a popular choice. Meter forces the player to time two different button presses on a meter to control speed and placement.
After Meter there is Pulse. Pulse is an interface that forces the player to stop a constantly shrinking and expanding circle to limit the range a pitch can go.
The fourth and final interface is Full Analog. Full Analog allows the player to have the most control over where their pitches end up, and as a result is the most difficult to use.
For players trying to improve, though, Full Analog is the only way to go. The interface involves the player pulling back on their right thumbstick to time speed, then pushing forward to control the exact path of the pitch.
Assess the game
KNOW THE SITUATION: You can see it all from the mound
Pitchers control the pace of the game, which means it's incredibly important to know just where your team stands each pitch. Pitching with your starter in the third inning is entirely different than pitching with your closer in the eighth.
READ MORE: MLB The Show 20 Review
Also, the player you're pitching to should impact your decision just as much who's pitching. You can't pitch the same to Mike Trout as you can to Albert Pujols.
As a player, you must be able to recognize and react to the weapons around you, and that means exploiting the weaknesses of different batters with the strengths of different pitchers.
Control the count
MASTER THE SCENARIO: A 1-2 count with 2 outs gives a lot of pitching freedom
Players need to understand how to adjust their style to the situation beyond just the inning and batter. With each at-bat comes a mental battle, and that battle is fought through the strike count.
Great pitchers can manage a strike count so well it feels like you're never actually at the plate. To these pitchers a 1-2 count and an 0-2 count are different worlds, and create entirely different decisions.
To improve your pitching, you'll need to master the strike count, and how best to use situations to your advantage.
Make them think
CATCH ME IF YOU CAN: Challenge batters from the very top of the at-bat
At the end of the day the batter's job is to react to the pitcher. This means the best way to outplay a batter is to make them think.
Yes, you might be playing Gerrit Cole and want to flex that high velocity with a nice fastball, but if you've thrown it three of the last four pitches, the batter is now much more ready for it.
By making yourself unpredictable with placement and pitch choice, batters have to think their way out of a bind. This puts plenty of pressure at the plate, right where you want it.