MLB The Show 22: April’s Best Monthly Rewards Cards
MLB’s The Show 22 monthly awards program is back and April’s Best highlights a number of Major League Baseball’s outstanding regular season performances. This month’s rewards include a 92 Lightning Anthony Rizzo – which can be collected for XP through the Spring Cleanup program – as well as 91 Legend POTM Lightning Andre Dawson, a card that honors the good defender’s good start with the Montreal Expos where he led the National League in home runs in April 1986.
The program’s new XP path includes over 20 new cards that can be earned through side XP missions and moments based on real-world baseball events, like the New York Mets and the first no-hitter of the season 2022 MLB. There’s also the new limited-time April Monthly Rewards Event with 2019 Topps Now Trevor Story and 2017 Topps Now Madison Bumgarner flashback rewards, and the Mother’s Day Flowers Conquest that can be farmed for XP and player items from pink ball / equipment.
With the Topps Now and Monthly Awards cards offering pro flexibility and experimentation, we’ve put together a quick cheat sheet on the best additions to make. Tip: Rizzo’s swing is not lacking.
Michael King (RP) – New York Yankees
The 26-year-old from Rochester, New York recorded his first major league save on April 14 and a week later struck out eight, including seven in a row, in three innings against the Cleveland Guardians ( April 22nd). King became only the third reliever in Yankees team history to accomplish the feat and as a tribute, his 85 Topps Now card pins strong H/9 and K/9 to a mix of five pitches and a lead, a slurve and a circle change that already have 99 break. His 50 stamina also eats innings for breakfast and can prevent a team’s ace from throwing a key start when it matters most.
Willy Adames (SS) – Milwaukee Brewers
After hitting .286 / .357 / .516 with 24 RBIs in his first 35 games as a Brewer last season, Adames recorded two homers and a career-high 7 RBIs against the Pittsburgh Pirates in late April. His Topps Now card is inferior overall, but he offers 2B/3B versatility with 97 arm strength and 82 reaction and a gap-finding bat with underrated pop. Adames is a power hitter first and with quirks like Dead Red, First-Pitch Hitter, Rally Monkey and Fighter – which boosts attributes in the 9th inning or later – he’s a valuable addition for low-budget teams and teams that struggle to make extras.
Seiya Suzuki (RF) – Chicago Cubs
The Tokyo-born outfielder signed a five-year, $85 million contract in March with the Cubs and made an immediate impact, becoming the only player in league history to record more than four walks and 8 RBIs in his first four games. April’s NL Rookie of the Month can be earned (for free) by collecting Topps Now cards and is an asset due to its power, scale of attributes, and the fact that Suzuki is MLB’s first true utility player. The Show 22 with several secondary positions. (3B/SS/LF/CF).
Jordan Romano (CP) – Toronto Blue Jays
Markham, Ontario’s top Jordan Romano, tied Josh Hader for the most saves (10) in MLB in late April, posting a 1.59 ERA and 13 strikeouts while knocking out opponents in the Blue Jays’ first open in Toronto since 2019. He’s basically Luigi with a four-seam fastball that can hit 100 mph without an Outlier and while his Live Series card benefits from Inside Edge, his Monthly Awards version features a maximum pause slider and a 112-step clutch to get out of unexpected jams.
J. P. Crawford (SS) – Seattle Mariners
The Seattle Mariners signed shortstop Gold Glove to a five-year, $51 million extension just days before the regular season and “Crawdaddy” jumped – hitting .360 / .449 / .573 with three homers and 9 runs products. His 27 hits in April ended in a nine-game hitting streak and that’s why his spreads against right-handers/left-handers make him a better generic short-term option. He crushes southpaws on the inside, excels with runners, and with his 6’2 frame and 87 reaction, Crawford is more than capable of being a defensive playmaker in high leverage situations, at the 88 FOTF of 2020 Fernando Tatis Jr.
Owen Miller (2B) – Cleveland Guardians
Owen Miller is a pure contact machine. The Cleveland Guardians rookie had 14 hits and seven extra hits — two homers and five doubles — in the first six games of the regular season. His Monthly Awards card is a mirror of 90 FOTF Jazz Chisholm and it’s a card that can be played anywhere as the Wisconsin native can rotate around four positions (2B and 1B/3B/SS) and can be put in parallel up to 90+ speed, which, for Miller, can lead to an automatic tripling of the appearance of the plate over two.
Kyle Wright (ES) – Atlanta Braves
The No. 5 overall pick in the 2017 draft had a subpar stretch from 2019 to 2021, spending most of last year in the minors before pitching in the World Series and starting with a 3 -0, 1.13 ERA start of the 2022 season. Wright had 34 strikeouts in 24 innings while holding other batters to a .171 batting average, all thanks to a new main pitch (a curveball) and with increased speed and movement towards its sinker and change. For San Diego Studio, that means four different heights with a break of over 95 and while his longer move/windup is all funk, his curveball turned slurve is the definition of dirt.
Taylor Ward (RF) – Los Angeles Angels
The Angels had a bespoke start to April as the 28-year-old outfielder had four home runs and 11 RBIs in the final six games of the month. Ward became the second player in the modern era to have more than four hits and four runs in a game (behind Roger Maris) and that’s part of the reason why his monthly rewards card is automatically a fan favorite . He lacks Bomber, but thanks to two position changes in two years – from receiver to third in 2018 and third to outfield in 2019 – Ward’s versatility is unmatched as he becomes a powerful safety net with a speed of more than 70 on the bases.
Anthony Rizzo (1B) – New York Yankees
The former Chicago Cub is in tears to start the 2022 season. After hitting some 20 foul home runs in his first game with the Yankees, Rizzo made an adjustment and hit nine home runs and 21 RBIs in April, including one rare three-hour performance at Yankee Stadium. He’s a first baseman with short porch power, but he gets by with Thomas-Fielder-Howard because of his smooth swing, his ability to smash left-handed pitchers like a left-handed bat, and the fact that his fighter and first pitch batter quirks make it more glitchy than you think. Tony could use +5 touch (and speed), but he’s a crushing Lightning card and won’t stop doing it until the All-Star program.
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