MLB 09 The Show – Franchise Mode Enhancements

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Hey everyone – MLB FE team here to bring you the first installment of the MLB 09 The Show blogs. For this entry, we’ll be talking about some of the details that have gone into the Franchise mode enhancements.

When we set out this year’s plan, one of our goals was to blow out the personnel aspects of the Franchise experience. Starting with the beginning of spring training, the rosters you will carry into spring will be those of their real-life counterpart, the long awaited 40-man rosters. Now you will have to manage your Spring Training roster a little more carefully to ensure your young players get the looks they need.

Moving on to the regular season, you will now be dealing with many of the various roster-related items all GMs have to deal with. You will be in control of designating players for assignment, waiver transactions, handling Minor League options, and managing your 40-man roster. Once in June, you will have the Amateur Draft to participate in. Along with drafting players, the Amateur Draft also includes Supplemental picks for those teams that failed to re-sign Type A or Type B free agents in the offseason.

MLB 09 The Show screenshot - Manage Roster

Once your season hits September, your 25-man roster will expand to the full 40-man where you will then have to decide who get’s the call and who doesn’t. If your Franchise is successful enough to make the playoffs, you will have to manage your rosters accordingly, and will only be able to replace players on the roster between series.

The Offseason is where the real fun starts. We’ve changed the Offseason system so that instead of traveling from menu to menu, going in and out of various screens, now all of your responsibilities can be found within the schedule. There are several important dates for you to be aware of in order to ensure your rosters are setup for the next season.

  • The 15th day of the offseason marks the end of exclusive free agent negotiating.
  • November 20th is the final day to align your 40-man roster in order to protect your players from the Rule 5 draft.
  • December 1st is the final day to offer arbitration to eligible players, or to offer any Type A or Type B free agent compensation.
  • December 7th is the deadline for any free agents offered arbitration to accept or decline the offer. If a player accepts the offer, they will go back on your roster. If they decline, they will become a free agent and are allowed to sign with any team.
  • Between 12/5 and 12/12, the Rule 5 Draft takes place.
  • December 12th is the deadline to tender contracts to players or they will become free agents.
    Arbitration hearings take place in early February.
  • After 2/15, any player with less than 3 years can have their contract renewed if they remain unsigned.

MLB 09 The Show screenshot - Arbitration

MLB 09 The Show screenshot - Waivers

As you can see, a lot of focus has been placed on bringing increased depth to roster and team management within Franchise mode. But these enhancements aren’t limited to only Franchise mode, and the same depth can be found in Season and Road To The Show modes.

– Kolbe Launchbaugh and Aaron Luke

MLB 09 The Show screenshot - Schedule Actions

MLB 09 The Show screenshot - Contract Status

MLB 09 The Show screenshot - Contract Management

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1 Author Reply

  • No thanks. I don’t pay $60 every year for the same game with one minor difference.

  • I’m liking the improved emphasis on the 40 man roster, but what are the chances that the list of minor leaguers will be more realistic, as in having more than 5-10 prospects for each franchise?

  • Dang, I still can’t believe Seattle lost Ibanez… It was a sad day, but hopefully he does well in Philly.

    Anyway, this feature looks nice, as well as the other stuff coming into the game. Here’s hoping to the game is easy to pick up, yet difficult to master.

  • So how about a roster update for nba 09

  • What about being able to swap stats between the PS3 and the PSP versions of the game?

    You could really take your game on the road that way.

  • @ 1 lol you can say that about any game you every play gta, tony hawk, gt, any first person shooter or rpg the list goes on and on. now back on topic on this game am not a real big fan when it come to baseball but i do buy the video game normally because there nothing out that time but i think killzone 2 and RE will be keeping me busy . i love your game and i will pick it up later , i love the new features you guys coming out with . not a first place buy on mine list but its a buy for later on.

  • You guys should have added the video of the new Yankee Stadium that’s over on the MTV multiplayer blog. It looks pretty damn good.

  • Will we be able to choose our own uniforms in franchise and season mode? i”m an Expos fan and I have to restart the ps3 20 times to get a team with the Expos uniform. mostly I give up and end up playing with the Nationals and having lost our beloved Expos to Washington the contradiction is eerie. Please HELP.

  • Sounds great! But will their be a demo?

  • Ignore my last post. I saw that you guys responded to the same question in the other MLB 09 post. Demo in Febuary, Yay!

  • just make sure that the road to the show has co-op! that would do it for me, at least for this year.

  • @1 I’ve never been into sports games so I’ve always seen much of the same thing. From an outsider it’s still the same gameplay.

    @6 Yes you could say it about every other game out there, but they’re more story based. From what I see sports games may have a career mode and what not, but I wouldn’t know how story driven it is. That would be like saying I already beat Grand Theft Auto 3, GTA: San Andreas is the exact same game. They have the same goals, but SA had new gameplay elements and a different story. I kind of think that sports games will always just be…sports. That’s just an outsider view though. I played very little of the ones I did play, so I’m no expert.

  • @Santana – this is just one update they are making to this years game, not the only update.

    Also, it doesn’t stop Madden and other successful series from doing the same does it? They continue to do very well just slapping a new year on the game cover, with much less changes being made.

  • Sounds amazing, such depth.. Counting down the days :)

  • Probably another pre-order for me…. Please focus on the gameplay/graphics and signature players. I loved 08 but there were a few annoying things about the gameplay. I didn’t care for the base stealing, some of the fielding was akward and base throwing should be more fluid. I also thought the hitting could be a little more interactive.

    Anyway, looking forward to the release.

  • Congrats to the Team. You guys have now officially made a baseball fan’s dream come true. This could very well be the best baseball game ever.

  • Last year’s seemed to be pretty amazing. Throw everything in that you had last year (including in-game music) along with all the new stuff, advertise the hell out of this thing and you may very well convince my dad to buy this on his own. (That would really help me since I don’t have a whole lot of money. Just saying… :P )

  • LOL, I just got my new issue of Playstation the offical mag. and They had the best line up of 08 sports games and Madden won (Boooo). And MLB the show 08 was not even listed in the top five.. And how does this happen? I thought MLB the show 08 was a very good sports game.. Alot better than Madden and I even like football over baseball..

  • awesome, keep up the good work guys

  • Man, you do an outstanding job with The Show. It is and has been the best Baseball sim for awhile now.

    If we could just get this level of quality out of The Life!

  • I haven’t been this excited for a sports game in a long time. You guys really do an excellent job. I AM PUMPED FOR THIS.

    BTW, thanks for using the Phightin’ Phils for your demonstration pictures. :)


    Sorry. Can’t wait for MLB 09!

  • I’ve been waiting for these additions for years. Great job getting them in this year. Definitely a buy.

  • Very excited for this year’s game.
    You guys do awesome work, keep it up!

  • Best baseball game to date… thank you for such an awesome series…!

  • My questions weren’t answered in the other thread, sorry if I’m breaking any unwritten code about asking twice, but…

    Hopefully you’re still responding to comments.

    You mentioned 09 will have voice chat, I’m curious about a couple of things.

    1: let’s face it, the voice quality in 08 was pretty terrible. Will this be improved for 09?

    2: will there be a better… system? Using L3 produced so many problems. I know playing with my friends, I just pushed it once at the beginning of a game and left it on. But we’d accidentally hit it throughout the game. Will there be some kind of actual push to talk (hold down the key style), or will there be just “always on”?

    3: I’ve noticed lag playing online, especially when playing in stadiums with a lot of background animations (fans waving and the like), and with runners on base, my friends and I have settled for playing on Spring Training or Minor League fields just to reduce this lag, will this be improved?

    I love MLB 08, I’ve played ungodly amounts of hours. I already have my copy of MLB 09 preordered. I can’t wait to have it. Hopefully you can answer my questions!

    Thanks in advance!

  • Why no PSEye in this roster update u call MlB The Show 09. Well based on what i’m seeing a used copy from gamestop from me if i ever want this game.

  • @8 Great to see that we can finally change the uniforms during the season Go Pilots!

  • I’m really hoping this game will be easier to understand for those not clued in on all of the little details in baseball. I know the rules behind the game and enjoy playing MLB ’08 The Show against a friend or the computer but, being from the UK where the sport isn’t commonly played, I find the main game mode’s too complicated to get through.

  • Yes, love seeing these changes going into RTTS as well. I never really got into Franchise mode last season because I spent my time on my catcher and pitcher.

    Amazing game last year, guys, and this year should be even better. This is the top reason I got a PS3 and I don’t regret it for a second!

    Oh, and please let us change our uniform numbers in RTTS. Please? :)

  • I hope these off-season changes will affect the AI teams as well.. It seems there are always a few noticeably annoying things that happen during seasons where i manage my team.. AI-controlled teams seem to make very few moves.. I always notice a few reasonably quality players on the free agent wire.. and some players amass stats that are unbecoming of the type of player that they are.. Would never expect a player like Jimmy Rollins to lead a league in home runs.. and some pitchers/bench players seem to be under-used on even my own team when i sim games..

  • How come there hasn’t been one roster update for NBA 09 even though the game case claims weekly updates will be available? I bought your NBA product for the first time. If there is no support for the game it will be the last. How about an NBA 09 thread in the forum instead of 08? The game has potential it would just be nice if is was supported post release. Good luck with the show, it’s a great game.

  • cant wait for this game. really.

    ever since it was announced, i’ve been playing MLB 08 like a rampant maniac. really cannot wait for 09 to release. keep up the great work, guys.

  • Finally!!! I’ve been waiting for these features since All-Star Baseball! It is truly becoming a simulation now…thanks for all that hard work getting these nuances in the game.

    Now that minor leaguers will be more important, please do me one HUGE favor…either get rid of all of you developer players, OR make yourselves editable. I’m going to do every roster at every level this year, and I know guys from last year battled having to move the devs around, and it prevented some prospects from being added. Any word on that? Also, more A-potential players per team would be great.

    Thanks again…by far the best baseball game since All-Star!!

  • This game is amazing.

    Definitely to me the best baseball game of all time. The attention to detail, and care tot he community the developers give on is impeccable.

    Definitely a day one purchase for me.

    Great work devs.

  • Will you be able to play HR Derby and this is not a big issue but just wondering if there will be older stadiums (ebbets field, etc) in the game?

  • I hope the loading is shorter for this one, it was just long enough in 08 to be annoying for such an amazing game.

  • I am so pumped. Will we finally be able to be able to edit our player in RTTS mode? I hate not being able to chance my number in RTTS mode.

  • Really really nice. I think the 40-man roster is long overdue in a baseball game…

    Which brings me to this point: You guys have made tremendous improvements in the franchise, and motivates us players to play and continue our franchises for many seasons to come, compiling our own personnel with various signings and trades that occurs during our own “fantasy” season. The only annoyance is that every time a new MLB game comes out, I would be compelled to start over my franchise, having to rebuilt my personnel again, having to establish any records that I have possibly broken, or having to do all major transactions all over again. I think this can be resolved if somehow you make the franchise saved data file compatible or importable across MLB games. That way it is possible for us to play 1, 5, 10, or more seasons, retain the stats of our players within those franchise seasons, yet be able to enjoy the new features of the game.

    Its obvious this is not gonna happen between MLB 08 -> MLB 09, but is it possible to make the modifications in the software now so that when MLB 10 comes along, the transition to import these saved files will be easier to develop?

  • Will pennants in LF at Turner Field (Braves) finally have the years on them? I was really disappointed to see the White Sox stadium and others have the years on their championship banners and not on the Braves stadium.

  • Will RTTS have the option of actually being drafted instead of choosing your team? I mean, I really want the ability to either have a ML tryout or something and then be drafted in the Amateur draft instead of automatically going to Spring Training for a particular team.

  • I have a very important question. Please answer.

    I’m a huge fan of MLB 08. Loved it and i’m so excited to play 09. I have one question though that matters a lot to me but oddly, no one ever brought up. At least i haven’t read anything about it.

    Will it be possible to save your progress during the offseason ? If not, why not ? There is so much to do and not being able to save midway in your schedule is quite lame because you have to do it all in one shot unless you don’t mind leaving your PS3 on for hours.

    Please please answer….and hopefully the answer is yes !

  • By acerazer1:

    “I’m liking the improved emphasis on the 40 man roster, but what are the chances that the list of minor leaguers will be more realistic, as in having more than 5-10 prospects for each franchise?”

    Rules of the MLB are that the game can only use players that have been in at least 1 Regular Season game.

  • There’s an easy way out of that, Kseel: Sign an agreement with the Minor Leagues as well.

  • Amazing. Absolutely amazing. As a former High Heat Baseball player, I never thought I would EVER see a game come as close to that in terms of realism and baseball greatness. The Show has done that. MLB 08: The Show was one major reason why I bought a PS3 over the X-Box 360. I’ve been playing 08 so much that my PS3 is RARELY turned off. It is simply amazing. Now, with these improvements I’ve seen in 09, I feel like a little kid again anticipating Christmas. The demo will be a MUST download for me.

    I can not wait to hear what else this incredible dev team has come up with. I’ve always wanted to see the lighting change and shadows move in during a game, and now we have it. I always wanted realistic pitch counts and broken bats. We have that. I wanted realistic looking crowds, and now we have that.

    I guess the only two things that are missing are weather in the game (things such as rain delays, early finishes to a game, and even double-headers forcing you to alter your roster through the course of a season), and the ability to optionally argue with umpires over a close call with the risk of getting ejected or possibly suspended if you argue to often/too hard.

    Thanks guys. This is incredible.

  • Are the minor league teams gonna be playable?

  • i want to say thanks for a cool game. i want to humbly request for you guys to please slow the pitch speed down to mlb07 speed please . mlb07 pitch speed set to the lowest setting all the way to the left was perfect and mlb08 set to the lowest was alot faster and i never played it cus pitch speed was too fast. so would you please please allow us to slow it down to mlb07 speed please ?

  • With the 2nd World Baseball Classic being this year, will the WBC Rosters be available for the 16 countries?

  • Did they replicate the real AA and AAA ballparks in this version?? in other words when i play a game in Omaha am i going to see a desert landscape with palm trees?? i think ill just play the 08 version for awhile untill they add more detail to this game, I’d rather pay a little more and have more accuracy with stadiums and ballparks

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