TRU-Exclusive Line Turns Heads Next February
Friday, November 11, 2005

McFarlane Toys is proud to present MLB 14, the first Sports Picks baseball lineup for 2006. MLB 14 features six of the best players in baseball, and will be available at Toys R Us stores nationwide. Like MLB 11, solid-packed cases of each player will ship directly to Toys R Us stores in each player's home city. We believe having figures readily available in the team member's home city is good for everyone, and we're striving to make that a reality in 2006.

So who's going to be in MLB 14? Here are the six answers you've been waiting for, as well as the prototype photography to satisfy your curiosity. Cameraman, ZOOM IT!

MARK MULDER -- The Oakland Athletics decided to split up their "Big Three" pitchers and the Cardinals stepped up immediately to nab Mark Mulder. The Cardinals' loss in the 2004 World Series left them targeting starting pitching, and Mulder didn't disappoint in his first season with the redbirds. The two-time All-Star and former 21-game winner compiled a 16-8 record in St. Louis, and looks forward to continuing his role as the Cardinals' left-handed rotation anchor for years to come.

BOBBY ABREU -- Bobby Abreu's versatile skills have made him Philadelphia's best player but also has been under the radar for most of his career. His 2005 season included a .286 average to go with 24 homers, 102 RBI's and 31 steals, but the spotlight finally found him on July 12th, 2005. Abreu muscled up in the All-Star Home Run Derby, crushing 24 homers in the first round and winning the event with 41 total homers -- eclipsing the previous record of 27. A surprise no longer, Abreu is set to lead the Phillies into the 2006 season.

ARAMIS RAMIREZ -- Cubs fans were used to the rotating wheel of mediocrity at third base since Ron Cey's departure in 1987. Chicago seemed to offer up a different starting third baseman every year: 1995's Todd Zeile, 1996's Leo Gomez, 1997's Jose Hernandez, 1998's Gary Gaetti, 1999's Ron Coomer and 2000's Bill Mueller. On July 23rd, 2003, the Cubs finally decided enough was enough and acquired Aramis Ramirez from the Pirates. Ramirez rewarded the Cubs by drilling 15 homers in his first 63 games and he hasn't looked back since. With the third base dilemma solved, Ramirez and his Cubs look to do some damage in 2006.

JEFF KENT -- The Dodgers muddled through a forgettable 2005 season, but one bright spot was the play of off-season signee Jeff Kent. The former MVP turned in another strong season, cracking 29 homers with 105 RBI's. While not garnering national attention, the consistent Kent has become baseball's all-time leader for career homers by a second baseman. The Dodger roster may be in flux with a new general manager arriving, but Kent's steady play at second base makes him one player L.A. can count on and build around in 2006.

JASON VARITEK 2 - There are 30 men in the Baseball Hall of Fame who once played for the Red Sox, but Boston has only named three captains since 1923. Catcher Jason Varitek wears the "C" proudly and served as the backbone of the 2004 World Championship club. Aside from being a strong defensive catcher who switch-hits with power, "Tek" brings a cerebral intensity to the game that has earned him league-wide respect. The diverse Boston clubhouse has long agreed on one thing -- Jason Varitek is the leader of their team.

ALEX RODRIGUEZ 4 -- Mixed reviews dogged Alex Rodriguez's first season on Broadway, but his encore left no doubt. A-Rod's .321 average was second-best in the American League, while he topped the leaderboards with 48 homers and a .610 slugging percentage. His strong play continued in the field, as he made just 12 errors in 161 games at third base.

MLB 14 will be sold exclusively at Toys R Us stores and is scheduled to arrive on pegs in Feb. 2006.