A number five on the Cardinals MLB 2K12 roster? Uh oh.
The line between “I’ve accepted Albert Pujols’ decision” and “I’m going to throw myself from the Eads Bridge” is very thin in St. Louis. Cardinals fans just don’t need another reason to freak out about their former hero.
Out of respect (read: fear of upping the City’s suicide rate), the Cardinals have stated that no player will wear the #5 this season (and likely, many seasons to come). Apparently, video game developer 2K Sports didn’t get that memo because they have newcomer Carlos Beltran wearing the #5 in their pre-release edition of MLB 2k12, which hits the public on Tuesday.
Granted, this is a pre-release version of MLB 2k12 (available as a free d/l to Xbox Live subscribers), but come on. The Number Five? In this regard, sports video games are similar to MLB baseball cards. Namely, there’s an early-season demand that must be met without giving artists and photographers time to rely on factual details.
Clearly, the rosters and underlying art direction for the Cardinals was finalized sometime between Belran’s signing date (December 22nd, 2011) and the Winter Warp-up on January 14th, when he decided on the #3.
But to choose the #5? Come on.
They could have chosen anything. Give him a #00 or #99, which always have the appearance of placeholder numbers. We can’t imagine there are many Kerry Robinson or So Taguchi fans that would have been upset with that decision.
We’re guessing the Art Director is a Cubs fan.
** The final version of MLB 2k12 is released on Tuesday. We’ll wait and see if 2K Sports updated Beltran’s number in the production copy. If they really wanted to rattle the cage of St. Louis fans, they’ll put him in #51.