Console: Gameboy Advance
Sports sims, especially those that lean into realism, have never done well on handhelds. Smilebit, a defunct division of Sega, changed that with 2002’s Baseball Advance. With licenses for every MLB team and player, Baseball Advance served as a worthwhile counterpart to console sims of the time. Sharp visuals combined with solid hitting, pitching, and fielding mechanics made playing through a 162 game season a grand and exciting endeavor. Not counting Mario sports titles, Baseball Advance was easily the most impressive sports sim to come to GBA.