Title: Playing the Field: Batter Up
Author: JM Snyder
Length: 10,587 words
Publisher: JMS Books
Genre: m/m contemporary romance
When the Wildwood Waves come to the Richmond Diamond, Rob Ritchie sneaks into the ballpark to watch them practice. He’s spotted by the team’s short stop, Mike Hennessey, a sexy man who takes a liking to Rob. Baseball banter turns into a date, and that evening Rob takes Mike to his favorite gay bar in the hopes of scoring a home run later in Mike’s hotel room.
Somehow, amid the flirting and the sex, Rob conveniently forgets to mention he plays for the home team.
It isn’t until Mike spies Rob on the baseball field facing off against the Waves that he realizes he slept with the enemy. Rob knows Mike’s upset, but can he talk his way back into the short stop’s bed after the game?
I often like these quickies from JM Snyder, but in the case of this one I was left slightly disappointed. The story follows baseball player Rob who’s sneakily scoping out the opposition before a match. When one of the players hits on him, they agree to go out together. Rob gets on really well with Mike and the sex is fantastic, but Rob feels guilty about not confessing his ties with the opposing team.
I really enjoyed the majority of this story. The author had done well in showing the dilemma that Rob feels. He has plenty of opportunities to ‘fess up’ but lets the moments pass by. I liked Rob enough that I could buy into his excuses, even if they were slightly self-centred, but since the story is leading up to the big discovery I could forgive that. The climatic scene where all is revealed was both tense and rather amusing in a manly fashion. Rob and Mike’s attraction zings off the page leading to a sex scene which had me fanning my face.
Rob’s attempts to seek forgiveness was also amusing and I was looking forward to seeing more of these guys together, developing that spark between them. Except, I didn’t because the story ended rather suddenly, leaving me dissatisfied and with a few questions about the situation. Questions like, is this just a one off shag before they go their separate ways? Are they going to try and meet up, and perhaps pursue the slight emotional attachment which is developing? I’ll never know because the story finished way before I wanted it to!
So whilst I found the story to be engaging, sexy and at times amusing, I was a little fed up by the ‘up in the air’ way the story ended. It made me a bit grumpy, which goes to show how much I liked the characters and wanted to see them happy. It may be that this won’t bother you, or that you’ll be happy with the open way we leave these guys. In which case I can recommend this story to you.