Sunday, December 7, 2014

Top 10 Baseball Facts from A League of Her Own by Karen Rock + Giveaway (Open Internationally!)

A League of Her Own
Karen Rock

Page Count: 312
Release Date: December 1st, 2014
Publisher: Heartwarming (Harlequin)
Genre: Contemporary, Romance, Baseball, Rivals to Lovers

He was attractive, talented... and way off-limits.

Heather Gadway may have been a world-class college pitcher and a top university coach, but she's a rank amateur when it comes to managing the Falcons, her father's struggling minor-league team. And when it comes to managing her aggravating attraction to Garrett Wolf, their talented new pitcher. It's going to be difficult enough to make it as the first female manager in the league and prove to her overly critical father she's worthy. No distractions. No missteps. And certainly no romances with players. Everything stands between them—including their troubled pasts—even as Heather's world falls apart and Garrett's the one who's there to catch her...

Baseball Trivia Tidbits that Found Their Way into A League of Her Own

I had a lot to research about baseball when writing A League of Her Own to make it authentic, especially about managing and pitching the game. Here’s a list of some things I learned that found their way into the story:
  1. How a manager, like my heroine, picks her batting order:
    1st Hitter: quickest; fastest runner to get on base
    2nd Hitter: good hitter that hits all over the place; hopefully moves the first hitter to 2nd base
    3rd and 4th Hitters: lots of power = homeruns; hopefully get a power hit to get players on bases home.
  2. "We Will Rock You," "Cotton-Eyed Joe," and "We Are Family" are almost guaranteed to be heard at any baseball game.
  3. Pitchers keep their hands from sweating by grabbing a porous bag of Rosin from the back of the mound and wiping their palms and fingers. They also have a cleat cleaner to step on to get off excess clay.
  4. A pitcher faces home plate straight on when no one is on base but stands sideways when he’s got runners behind him who might try to steal.
  5. The manager of a minor league team is called Skipper.
  6. A curve ball is a slow pitch that dives down and to the left and a slider is a hard-thrown pitch that moves to the left. I learned a lot of different pitches, but these are two, in addition to his fierce fast ball, that Garrett uses in the novel.
  7. Typically, when a catcher points one finger down in his glove, he’s signaling the pitcher to throw heat (a fast ball).
  8. A boomer, a moonshot, a dinger, a blast, a homer, a tater, a goner, a round-tripper and a souvenir are all slang for a home run.
  9. A gap shot is a hit that whizzes through the space between the short stop and second-baseman and a dribbler is a ground ball to first that the runner beats.
  10. There are three types of pitchers. Starters who pitch the majority of the game, Relief Pitchers who take over around fifth or sixth inning to save the Starter’s arm or change a game’s momentum, and a Mop-up or Long Relief Pitcher who can be put in near the end of a game when the team’s lead is so big that this pitcher will have no effect on the outcome... the least prestigious position for a pitcher. This plays a major role in changing the course of the story at a critical moment.
Who knew there was so much to know? I could go on and on... there were many details and nuances I needed to get right to make this minor league world come to life. Luckily, I got to visit a minor league team in Florida and I had my baseball addict husband (he watches, plays, coaches and referees) to fact check. He wasn’t letting me get a single thing wrong when it came to America’s favorite sport... and his. Now if only he’d care that much about researching 18th Century Scottish Highlanders for me... *sigh*

Thanks so much for having me on Books à la Mode today! Wishing everyone Happy Holidays :)

About the Author

Since Karen Rock’s grandmother passed her shopping bagfuls of Harlequin Presents as a teen, it’s been her dream to add her voice to the Romance genre. Now an author of YA contemporary romance, such as the Camp Boyfriend series and Adult contemporary romance for Harlequin’s latest contemporary line, Heartwarming, Karen is thrilled to pen wholesome, tender, deeply romantic stories that all can relate to.

When she’s not busy writing, Karen enjoys watching anything starring Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks, cooking her Nona’s family Italian recipes, and occasionally rescuing local wildlife from neighborhood cats.

She lives in the Adirondack Mountain region with her husband, her very appreciated beta-reader daughter, and two King Charles Cavalier cocker spaniels who have yet to understand the concept of “fetch,” though they know a lot about love.


Books à la Mode is giving away one copy of A League of Her Own in the format of the winner's choice—yay!! Print copies are limited to US residents only, but digital copies can be sent anywhere in the world!

To enter, all you have to do is tell me:
Are you a baseball fan, and if so, what is one of your favorite baseball games or memories? If not, what is your favorite spectator sport?
Please make your comment MEANINGFUL. Comments solely consisting of stock responses or irrelevant fluff like "Thanks for the giveaway!" will not be considered for entry. Karen and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the tour publicist and author—a huge thank you to Lola's Blog Tours and Karen!
Giveaway ends December 21st at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open internationally—woohoo! However, the print copy option is restricted to US residents only.
Void where prohibited.
Winners have 48 hours to claim their prize once they are chosen, or else their winnings will be forfeited.
Although I do randomly select winners, I am in no way responsible for prizes, nor for shipping and handling.
As a reminder, you do not have to follow my blog to enter, though it is always very much appreciated ❤
Good luck!