Meet MLB 2K11's Million-Dollar Man
Brian Kingrey, a 25-year-old high school music teacher in Louisiana has become the latest gamer to pitch a perfect game with 2K Sports' Major League Baseball series; claiming a million-dollar prize.
Kingrey played Major League Baseball 2K11 for a few weeks in advance of the contest, which demanded that participants pitch a perfect game using the match-ups from the league's April 1st slate of opening day games. His entry was the first submission verified and certified by official scorekeeping organization Twin Galaxies.
Kingrey won a 2-0 no-hitter using the Phillies – with MLB 2K11 cover star pitcher Roy Halladay – against the Houston Astros (the Phillies won the game 5-4 in real life), and his choice of the Halladay was no accident. "Halladay is a beast of a pitcher," said Kingrey, "and he has this crazy slider to the left you can use against right-handed batters. The Astros have only two left-handed batters in their lineup, so that slider really destroyed the Astros team. I did a lot of research on MLB.com studying batting averages, trying to see what they swung at – and the Astros are very, very aggressive swingers, I found out. So, they swung at a lot of pitches they probably shouldn’t have swung at in the game. Props to the game for being so consistent with MLB.com. It really worked out for me."
Despite Kingrey's mastery of the mound, he told us he was a little nervous getting the no-hitter with his batting skills and having to rely on the AI to help with fielding. "...The batting kind of scared me. I wasn’t sure I was going to get a hit against the all-star difficulty." Still, Kingrey's mixture of contact hitting and bunts got him a 1-0 lead. Then Phillies' first baseman Ryan Howard stepped up to the plate and blasted a home run to make it 2-0. As for the fielding, Kingrey had a distinct strategy in mind. "I always threw balls to the left in which batters were probably going to hit them to the right. So I set all my fielders as far to the right as I possibly could in case they did hit it. It probably wouldn’t work in a real-life scenario." [laughs]
The interesting thing is, Kingrey wasn't even a baseball fan until this year's contest came around – just a hardcore gamer (he also enjoys League of Legends and the Call of Duty franchise) whose competitive streak was piqued by 2K Sports' contest. Now, not only is he a millionaire, but he's also a self-described die-hard Phillies fan.
As for the million dollars itself, Kingrey says he's got debts he's going to pay off, but that his first major purchase is going to be...a new refrigerator. "It’s an amazing experience. It’s still unreal. I don’t feel like I’m a millionaire or anything like that."
For more on the game, check out Reiner's review.