Red Sox

Eduardo Rodriguez to rep Red Sox in MLB The Show video game tournament

Eduardo Rodríguez. /Michael Dwyer/AP File Photo

NEW YORK (AP) — Left-handed pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez will be representing the Red Sox in the MLB’s newly announced video game competition.

Thirty big leaguers — one from each team — have signed on to play a round-robin regular season on the MLB The Show video game with the real season on hold due to the novel coronavirus.

Among the stars are pitcher Blake Snell of the Tampa Bay Rays, outfielder Juan Soto of the Washington Nationals, and shortstop Bo Bichette of the Toronto Blue Jays.

Snell, a Cy Young Award winner, will face Cincinnati reliever Amir Garrett in the opener Friday night. That matchup will air on Snell’s Twitch feed, and other games will be streamed via Twitch and YouTube with MLB Network host Robert Flores providing commentary.

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Players will complete a 29-game regular season — one three-inning contest against each team — through April. The top eight teams will qualify for the postseason, expected to mirror MLB’s current format.

The venture was launched Friday by MLB, the players’ association, and Sony Interactive Entertainment.

Participants range in age from 36-year-old San Francisco outfielder Hunter Pence to 21-year-old San Diego infielder Fernando Tatis Jr. There are 11 All-Stars, including Milwaukee reliever Josh Hader, Texas slugger Joey Gallo, and the New York Mets’ Jeff McNeil.

The NBA is running a similar esports tournament on NBA 2K featuring 16 pro players, including stars Kevin Durant and Trae Young. Those games have been airing on ESPN.

MLB, the union, and Sony are contributing $175,000 to Boys & Girls Clubs of America as part of the initiative.

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