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Saturday, October 6, 2012
'MLB 12: The Show' simulates playoffs

By Jon Robinson

Playoffs
Can the Yankees take care of the Orioles? We consult "MLB 12: The Show" to get some answers.
Will we finally see a Bay Bridge Series that isn't interrupted by an earthquake? Can Baltimore continue its improbable run and take down the mighty Yankees? Will the Cardinals catapult back to the title after a heated, trash-throwing win over the Braves?

"MLB 12: The Show" is here to help answer these questions, as ESPN has joined forces with the designers of "The Show" to simulate the results of each round of the playoffs.

Now that the heart-pounding wild-card games are complete, here's a look at what Sony's trademark title predicts from the next round up to the World Series:

Cincinnati Reds vs. San Francisco Giants
Even with Matt Cain starting Game 1 in San Francisco, the Giants are no match for the Reds, with the Reds pounding Cain in the opener 10-4. Game 2 also turns into a slugfest, as Brandon Phillips triples twice for Cincinnati, going 3-for-4 with two RBIs and a walk to help the Reds win 9-8. Unfortunately for the Giants, there's nowhere to go from here but broomsville, with the Reds pulling out the sweep in Cincinnati thanks to a thunderous Joey Votto home run.
Series Results: Reds beat Giants 3-0

Washington Nationals vs. St. Louis Cardinals
In a hotly contested series that takes all five games to decide a winner, Bryce Harper comes up huge for the Nationals, running the bases like a terror and homering in two key situations that both lead to Washington wins. Game 5, however, comes down to the arm of Gio Gonzalez, with the Nationals' ace pitching a shutout to help Washington advance to play the Reds in the National League Championship Series.
Series Results: Nationals beat Cardinals 3-2

Detroit Tigers vs. Oakland A's
The A's shocked the baseball world this season, and for those fans out there who have yet to witness this roster, get ready for one of the most exciting teams to pop off your screen in years. But even with all the buzz, the A's are taken down by Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera and the powerful Detroit lineup, as the Tigers win the white-knuckle series 3-2. Cabrera and Prince Fielder come up huge in this series, blasting some of the most towering home runs of the season, capped off by a Cabrera shot in Game 5 to give Detroit the victory.
Series Results: Tigers beat A's 3-2

New York Yankees vs. Baltimore Orioles
The American League East rivalry continues, but this time it's all Orioles, with Baltimore taking advantage of some clutch hitting to beat New York 3-1. It's a crazy series, as the Yanks win Game 1, but Baltimore comes back to win three straight. Jim Thome homers in two of the victories, and Jim Johnson saves all three of the O's wins to help Baltimore advance to the ALCS.
Series Results: Orioles beat Yankees 3-1

Playoffs
The San Francisco Giants couldn't reproduce their 2010 magic in an "MLB 12: The Show" simulation.
NLCS: Washington Nationals vs. Cincinnati Reds
Total and complete domination. That's the only way to describe Washington's four-game sweep of Cincinnati. With scores of 7-2, 6-1, 2-0 and 10-4, the Nationals' hot bats combined with some unbelievable pitching end up being way too much for the Reds to handle. Harper and Ryan Zimmerman lead the way for the Nationals, with Zimmerman capping off the sweep with a Game 4 that saw him go 4-for-5 with a home run, a double, three RBIs and two runs scored.
Series Results: Nationals beat Reds 4-0

ALCS: Detroit Tigers vs. Baltimore Orioles
Can the Orioles already magical season get any better? How does a trip to the World Series to face the Nationals sound? According to "MLB 12: The Show," that's exactly what's about to happen. The Orioles take down the Tigers 4-0 in the ALCS. Johnson records saves in three of the four games, with Thome once again coming through in the clutch, including a home run, two RBIs and two runs scored in the series-clinching Game 4. It's Adam Jones who starts the series off right, though, going 3-for-4 with two homers, four RBIs and two runs scored in Game 1, helping the O's set the tone for this matchup from the first inning.
Series Results: Orioles beat Tigers 4-0