One quick aside: Microsoft, you are the wealthiest software company in the world. Would it kill you to put a CD booklet insert into your damn jewel cases? Man, I hate looking at those exposed CD ROMs through the clear front cover.
First, the graphics. I think I was one of the few who didn't just swoon over the graphics in last year's game. I thought that all the players looked fat and out of shape (no, not just the designated hitters!) and that the facial expressions and movements of the players typically were extremely creepy. MSBB2K, however, really looks wonderful. The players have different body types and the slender, athletically-built people really looked that way. Motion is very smooth, and the stadiums (except the crowds) look wonderful.
The gameplay is enjoyable, albeit a bit simplistic. Try as I might, I couldn't throw a wild pitch. I'd line up the pitch five feet outside, throw the heat...and the catcher would still snag it. In the dirt, high, wide, didn't matter. Eli Marrero is a good catcher, but he ain't that good! Pitching in general is easy enough. I really came to enjoy the visible ball cursor inside of the strike zone box. It seemed goofy at first, but I became quite accustomed to it. My pitchers, however, always seemed to tire markedly faster than the AI hurlers. I would even steer clear of the super-speed pitches. These are a really strange, and wackily entertaining, option to artificially increase the speed of a fastball by holding down the A button until just before the pitcher releases the ball. When the ball is released, it is accompanied by what sounds to be a sonic boom. One of my staff threw a 111 mile per hour fastball! Realistic? Not unless you're the Big Unit...and even then you'd need quite the prevailing tail wind. Fun? Hell, yes!