MLB The Show 21 Update Makes Some Important Gameplay Changes

A new MLB The Show 21 update will be live soon on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S, and ahead of the update’s release Sony San Diego has released the official patch notes revealing everything the update does, which largely makes gameplay changes that will impact players playing online head to head the most.

As noted, the update isn’t live, at least it isn’t at the moment of writing this. And it won’t be for a few more hours, or, more specifically, until July 10th at 4:00 AM PT. After this, it will be released on all platforms alongside a download, though right now it’s unclear how large the file size of this download will be.

Below, you can check out the update’s entire patch notes, courtesy of Sony San Diego:


  • Pinpoint Pitching adjustments:
    • The Release timing and direction now have a less lenient criteria for ‘Good’ and ‘Perfect’ pitches. NOTE: This change can also be seen when using competitive gameplay style settings in offline modes.
    • From the devs: We knew that pinpoint pitching would be a very difficult mechanic to master for some players, and we knew we were going to need to make changes at some point once we got the feedback and the data. Now that we have that data, we agree with the feedback that it is just a little bit too easy right now in a competitive setting. This new change will make the timing window for “Good” and “Perfect” a little bit harder to achieve.
  • Contact Hitting adjustments:
    • Contact Swing is now less effective when used by power hitters. The higher the power, the greater the loss in mph when you choose to use Contact Swing. This change should now display a more accurate tradeoff between each swing type for high power batters.
    • From the devs: Contact swing was implemented to allow for “shortening” your swing and help extend AB’s with 2 strikes, or execute hit and runs at the expense of power. While examining the community feedback this year, we noticed that players with exceptionally high power attributes were not being impacted enough by using Contact Swing. The effects of using Contact Swing should sacrifice exit velocity for an easier timing window, easier check swings, and easier fouled off pitches.
  • R2 (viewing pitch history):
    • Batters pressing R2 to view the pitch history will no longer impact the gesture portion of Pinpoint Pitching for the defensive player. If R2 is pressed at the same time or after the pitch motion is started, R2 will no longer interrupt the defensive user. If the batter presses R2 before the pitch motion has started, the motion will not start.
    • From the devs: We intended R2 to be used in a way to let the batter stop the pitcher from quick pitching and “take a breath” (and of course see the pitch repertoire and pitch history). In real Baseball, it might be equivalent to the batter keeping their foot out of the box, for example. For that reason, we don’t want to simply remove the feature entirely, but unfortunately we’ve seen players misusing it and causing grief for those who use pinpoint pitching. We hope this change alleviates some of that grief going forward.
  • Other changes and fixes:
    • Added confirmation a dialog to the friendly quit acceptance flow
    • Users are no longer able to back out of the bullpen screen following a second mound visit
    • Fixed a freeze that could happen when a ground ball is hit to second and thrown to first
    • Fixed a freeze that could happen when the ball was hit to specific areas the outfield
    • Fixed a freeze that could happen on a very late bunt attempt


  • Darren O’Day no longer tips his pitches after selecting the pitch
  • Fixed an issue in Franchise and Exhibition the scheduled starting pitcher could not be put into the lineup instead, even after selecting a different starting pitcher

MLB The Show 21 is available via PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and Xbox Game Pass. For more coverage on the game, click here.

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