Friday, March 28, 2014
Angling Towards Danger
What You Need To Know: The 27th overall pick fresh out of high school, Young Mr. Porcello was pitching in the big leagues before he could legally have himself a beer. He's getting ready to begin his 6th year in the big leagues and the guy just turned 25 years old. Seriously, wrap your mind around that for just a moment. Anyway, Ricky has had an up and down career with Detroit, most of which has been attributed to his youth and having to learn as he goes, all while facing down Major League hitters. He's also what is known as a "ground ball pitcher." He won't strike out a ton of guys. He gets guys to swing and hit the ball ineffectually. Pitchers like Ricky are only as a good as the defense behind them, and Detroit's defense hasn't always been super spectacular - but that should be better this season with a much improved infield (on paper at any rate, we'll see what happens once the season is underway). He's a Jersey kid, and when the Tigers signed Torii Hunter, Ricky was wearing Torii's preferred jersey number. Ricky told the veteran he could have the number on one condition - he had to make a donation to Hurricane Sandy relief efforts - which Hunter did.
Also of note, Ricky is constantly rumored to be on the trade block. Seriously, even as I type this he's rumored to be traded. But I don't think our GM is going to pull that trigger just yet (we'll see what mid-season brings). I happen to like Ricky. Yes, power pitches who throw 95 mph are sexy, but that's not the only way to win the game. Plus, he's a cutie-patootie (Wendy, thou art a dirty old lady).
His Baggage: OK, sure. Ricky hasn't exactly lived up to the spectacular hype he generated coming into the draft, but it's not like he's been a vortex of suck. For his baggage, I'm going to that most wonderful of inventions, the Internet. What does the Internet tell us about Rick? He likes to fly fish. Seriously. He apparently likes the intensity and solitude of it, which I "get." Even though baseball is a team sport, being a pitcher is different. You're one person, out on the mound, all by your lonesome. Sometimes the game is all on you. Fishing and pitching, they have a lot in common.
Proposed Category Romance Plot: After the long grind of the season, he's finally ready to enjoy some time off. Plus he's more than ready to get away from the trade rumors that constantly seem to follow him. He's heard rumors of his own, about a legendary fishing guide working in remote areas of Montana. But chasing the guy down has not been easy, which in this day of cell phone cameras and social media is practically unheard of. Finally, calling in favor after favor from friends of friends, he's found him. Sort of. Turns out "Terry" is short for Theresa. When flattery doesn't work, he resorts to begging and outright bribery. Terry agrees to take him out on a fishing holiday, only to find themselves stranded thanks to unseasonable weather and running afoul of some drug smugglers working in the area. So much of his relaxing holiday.....
What Category Romance Line?: Harlequin Romantic Suspense, with a hat tip to author Jill Sorenson. Her more recent romantic suspense novels for HQN might have influenced this plot just a wee bit.