Earlier this week, Miami Marlins phenom Jazz Chisholm Jr. was announced as the cover athlete for MLB The Show 23. While most fans of the series were excited for the announcement, there were some who felt that SDS made the wrong choice for the cover athlete. These people feel like Jazz Chisholm Jr. hasn’t accomplished enough compared to other more deserving choices.
You Like Jazz?
Those that like the choice of Jazz Chisholm Jr. for the cover of MLB The Show 23 think he is a perfect reflection of the direction baseball is heading. Jazz is a young player who just turned 25 today (Happy Birthday). He is a five-tool player who can hit homers and steal bases with the best in the league. At a time where MLB is trying to reach younger fans, having Jazz bring his sense of style and enjoyment for the game of baseball to the cover seems like an easy choice.
Putting a flashy player who plays personifies "fun" on the field is the perfect modern-day combination for a cover athlete.
Great choice. https://t.co/gevi1CLgUo
— Mills (@MillsTwitch) January 30, 2023
Jazz also becomes the first Bahamian born player to ever grace the cover of MLB The Show. He is also coming off his first All-Star game selection. Jazz was on pace for a breakout season last year before injuries ended his season. There’s no reason to believe he won’t come back just as strong in 2023.
The MLB The Show cover athlete should feature two things:
1) A good design lol literally just look good
2) A cool player who is exciting
If Jazz is the cover, both are covered perfectly 🤷🏻♂️
— Evan (@OhChev) January 27, 2023
Jazz Chisholm Jr. is also a huge fan of MLB The Show. He loves Diamond Dynasty and has even made content with community members such as Shelfy in the past. He also helped pick the attributes for the 99 OVR card of himself that was just added into MLB The Show 22 to celebrate him being named the cover athlete.
Celebrate alongside @j_chisholm3 with this Topps Now Jazz Chisholm Jr. 💎
— MLB The Show (@MLBTheShow) January 31, 2023
Having a player like Jazz on the cover seems to be a great pick. He is young, exciting, and loves the game as well as its community. Having a player that loves the game and is excited to be the face of it is awesome for MLB The Show. There is really not much more fans of the series can ask for.
One thing I find interesting about the Jazz cover is him being present live for the reveal and the interview from RoFlo after.
I heard Jazz talk more about baseball and the game during those 30 minutes than the previous 4 cover athletes combined (Not a knock on those guys)
— Ance🌵 (@ancelarmstrong_) January 30, 2023
The Case Against Jazz
One reason some players don’t like the choice of Jazz for the cover athlete is they feel there were more deserving players. Mike Trout, for example, has never been on the cover of MLB The Show, despite having multiple MVPs and being considered one of the greatest players of all time.
Jazz Chisholm being the cover of mlb the show 23 is such a bizarre choice
It’s kinda like if Brandon Aiyuk was picked as the cover of madden 24 next year
— Big Game Bengal (@BengalYouTube) January 26, 2023
Many people felt like Seattle Mariners star Julio Rodriguez should have been on the cover. Rodriguez won Rookie of the Year after hitting 28 HRs and stealing 25 bases at only 21 years old. He also racked up 6.2 WAR in his first year in the big leagues. Jazz only has 4.9 WAR through his first three seasons.
Can’t believe I watched that awful stream just for Jazz Chisholm to be the cover athlete. There are at least 20 guys who deserved it more. He has a cool name. That’s about it. https://t.co/ozyHWpWzuV
— Rational Yankees Fan (@rational_yankee) January 30, 2023
Defenders of the choice point to previous cover athletes like Yasiel Puig and Javier Baez as other players who may not have been the best in the league but were exciting players to have on the cover. Puig had a similar OPS and was about the same age when he was put on the cover of MLB 15: The Show. He was also a flashy player that brought a unique personality to the game like Jazz does. However, Puig had finished second in the Rookie of the Year voting in 2013, and had received MVP votes in both 2013 and 2014. Baez had also finished second in NL MVP voting the year prior to him being on the cover. Jazz is actually the first player to have never gotten a single MVP vote before being on the cover of MLB The Show.
Look at the Stats
One user on Reddit went so far as to compile that stats of all previous MLB The Show cover athletes in their year prior to being on the cover. Jazz ranks last in stats like WAR, BA, OBP, SLG, OPS, and OPS+. He is also in the bottom three in H, 2B, BB, RBI, and HR.
With all this being said, it is possible that Jazz was chosen for the cover of MLB The Show 23 before his injury that shortened his season. If that is the case, the decision makes a lot more sense. Jazz was electric to start 2022. You couldn’t turn on MLB Network without seeing some sort of highlight from him. He was well on his way to the best year of his young career, and would most likely have gotten at least some MVP votes.
I’m seeing a lot of discourse about JRod not being the cover athlete. I’d have to believe that the cover athlete was chosen well in advance. It makes sense Jazz was chosen as an exciting young player, with his selection as cover athlete being made before his injury.
— 👑 Dae 👑 (@Daeholee_Grail) January 30, 2023
What do you think about the Jazz Chisholm Jr. being on the cover of MLB The Show 23? Do you think he was the right choice, or would you have preferred someone else?