Shohei Ohtani Cover, MLB The Show 22 Release Date Revealed in New Trailer

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistJanuary 31, 2022

FILE - Shohei Ohtani wins the Commissioner's Historic Achievement Award from Rob Manfred before Game 1 in baseball's World Series between the Houston Astros and the Atlanta Braves Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2021, in Houston. Ohtani was among the athletes who either won or lost the most money for sports bettors in 2021, according to several national sports books. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis, File)
Ashley Landis/Associated Press

Major League Baseball doesn't have a collective bargaining agreement, but it does have an MLB The Show 22 cover athlete. 

Shohei Ohtani will serve as the cover star for the latest iteration of the game, which will be released April 5.

B/R Walk-Off @BRWalkoff

Who else? Shohei Ohtani is the next cover athlete for @MLBTheShow! https://t.co/rbLS5gEtsN

MLB The Show @MLBTheShow

It's Ohtani time. Pre-order #MLBTheShow 22. Available 4/5 on PS5, PS4, Xbox X|S, Xbox One, and for the first time ever, Nintendo Switch. Pre-order: https://t.co/LCivWAsdi4 https://t.co/xekdg9fuhE

Ohtani won the 2021 AL MVP after hitting .257/.372/.592 with 46 home runs, 100 runs batted in and 26 steals. He posted a 9-2 record with a 3.18 ERA and 1.09 WHIP while striking out 156 batters in 130.1 innings pitched. 

The two-way star is the first Angels player to ever feature on The Show cover. Surprisingly, teammate Mike Trout has never been featured on the cover despite winning the MVP three times and making nine All-Star appearances.

Ohtani is the first AL player to grace the cover since Aaron Judge in 2018. Bryce Harper, Javier Baez and Fernando Tatis Jr. have been on the cover the last three years.

Details on MLB The Show 22 have been scant to this point, likely due in part to the ongoing lockout. While video games have tended to maintain their release schedule during lockouts in other sports, developers would prefer any changes to baseball's structure caused by the new CBA to be implemented in the game. The closer we get to the launch date without a deal in place, the less likely it is we'll see the new CBA reflected in MLB The Show 22, barring some post-release support.

This year, MLB The Show 22 will be available on Nintendo Switch for the first time, in addition to PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.