I'm a football fan. I don't usually follow baseball that much but when my husband announced that we would be going to see a Washington Nationals game within the next month it put me in the frame of mind to knock out all the baseball romances I had laying around. I ended up reading six of them in a 2-3 day span and had a lot of fun with them.
I started with the Richmond Rogues series by Kate Angell. Squeeze Play, Curveball, Strike Zone, and Sliding Home all follow players in the MLB made up team from Richmond. Rogues was the perfect name for these guys - they're cocky and absolutely full of themselves but also totally cute and irresistible. Not to mention hot. As in smokin'. Funny too. My favorite book was Curveball, a book that is split into three stories about the Bat Pack, a trio of guys who got themselves put on suspension for fighting on the field. "Psycho" falls for a woman who appears on the doorstep of his historical landmark house to offer her decorating skills. "Chaser" discovers that he's been in love forever with his best friend, Jen, who is also the girl next door. And "Romeo" finally finds the woman who he can't live without but she also happens to the only one he's never been able to charm. (Psycho was my favorite.) These quick reads are filled with sexual innuendo and are very tongue-in-cheek but still manage to be sweet at the same time.
To contrast, Jill Shalvis's Pacific Heat team is a little more serious but no less enjoyable. Double Play is about the relationship between the Heat's pitcher, Pace Martin, and a reporter who always gets her story, Holly Hutchins. Pace and Holly become wrapped up in a scandal involving steroids and banned substances which doesn't do good things for the budding romance they share. Slow Heat pairs up Samantha McNead, publicist for the Heat, with Wade O'Riley, the Heat's catcher. Samantha's family owns the Heat and pushes her into a fake public relationship with Wade to help diffuse some unflattering attention involving a pregnant stalker. Samantha and Wade have a history and lots of chemistry, which makes for a sticky situation. Both Double Play and Slow Heat are classic Jill Shalvis and I am definitely looking forward to the next book, out probably next year. Kate Angell's next Richmond Rogues book, Sweet Spot, will be out in October 2010.