10 Great Baseball Books for under 2 bucks!

To celebrate the World Series, these independent authors and publishers have dropped the price of the Kindle edition of these critically acclaimed baseball titles to 99 cents to $1.99 for one week starting October 21. For less than $14 you can get all 10.

The Greatest Show on Dirt, by James Bailey

Minor league baseball is the land of dreamers, where young men endure months on the road, long bus rides, bad food, and constant pressure while they hone their craft and reach for the next rung up the ladder. Like the players on the field, the men and women who work for the teams put in long hours for low pay to be part of the game they love. It doesn’t take Lane Hamilton long to understand the appeal. When he’s fired for sleeping through an important meeting at the bank where he works, Lane hooks on as an operations assistant with the Durham Bulls. Every day at historic Durham Athletic Park brings something new, and despite the grueling hours, Lane’s too busy ducking jealous co-workers and amped-up relief pitchers to ever get bored. Set in the same beloved old stadium where Bull Durham was filmed, The Greatest Show on Dirt is a realistic, yet often hilarious, account of a young man’s indoctrination into life in the bush leagues.

James Bailey moved to Seattle the year after the expansion Mariners were hatched. He grew up rooting for a team that rarely won, crying himself to sleep while listening to Hall of Famer Dave Niehaus liven up the broadcasts of a hapless bunch led by the likes of Ruppert Jones and Bruce Bochte. Just as better days were dawning in the Kingdome, he moved to North Carolina. While attending North Carolina State University in the early '90s, he worked for the Durham Bulls, planting the seeds for his debut novel, The Greatest Show on Dirt. He later spent six years covering the minor leagues for Baseball America magazine. He currently lives in Rochester, N.Y., with his wife and son. His second novel, Nine Bucks a Pound, was released in 2014. His third novel, Sorry I Wasn't What You Needed, which has nothing to do with baseball, is due out in 2015.

Buy on Amazon: The Greatest Show on Dirt
James Bailey's Website
Twitter: @James_L_Bailey

The Book of Baseball Literacy, 3rd Edition, by David Martinez

Lose yourself in all the marvelous memories and hallowed history of America's national pastime. From the gloveless pioneers of the 1840s to the strife-ridden headlines of the 2000s and beyond, this comprehensive reference offers nearly 700 important baseball yarns, stats, and stories in a style as lively as the game itself. Praised by critics as “thoroughly enjoyable” (Booklist) and “instructive and fun” (USA Today) and even selected as required reading for a college course on baseball history, The Book of Baseball Literacy puts over a century and a half of legends and lore, right in your mitt. It will settle arguments and provoke them, answer questions and ask them. It’s a must for veteran baseball fans—and a perfect way for newcomers to get up to speed on baseball people, places, events, stats, stories, and more.

In addition to writing The Book of Baseball Literacy and ebooks about baseball history and statistics, David Martinez has worked as a news reporter, college sports broadcaster, and advertising copywriter, but his biggest love has always been baseball. A member of the Society for American Baseball Research, he reads extensively on the sport and owns an expansive baseball library. A California native, he received his bachelor’s degree in English from the University of California, Berkeley, and he now makes his home in San Jose with his wife and two young children.

Buy on Amazon: The Book of Baseball Literacy: 3rd Edition: Nearly 700 People, Places, Events, Teams, Stats, Stories, and More-Everything You Need to Know in One Massive Book
David Martinez's Website

Slouching Toward Fargo, by Neal Karlen

The wild and hilarious adventures of baseball’s magnificent misfits, the St. Paul Saints of the independent Northern League. Starring team co-owners Bill Murray and Mike Veeck, and a roster that includes Darryl Strawberry, Jack Morris, J. D. Drew, and Steve Howe--not to mention Wayne Terwilliger and the spirit of Bill Veeck--plus an off-the-wall cast of wannabes and has-beens. Told with humor and a great deal of affection by Rolling Stone writer Neal Karlen, Slouching Toward Fargo is an unforgettable tale of big-time characters playing small-town baseball who learn to love the game all over again. Winner of the prestigious Casey Award for best baseball book of 1999. Featuring a new foreword by Mike Veeck!

Buy on Amazon: Slouching Toward Fargo: A Two-Year Saga of Sinners and St. Paul Saints with Bill Murray, Darryl Strawberry, and Dakota Sadie
Published By: Summer Game Books

The Rules Abide: The Thinking Fan's Guide to Baseball Rules (With History, Humor and a Few Big Words), by Jim Tosches

Every baseball player, coach and fan should know the rules of their beloved game, but there's just one problem, the rule book is an intolerable read that often raises as many questions as it answers. As a student of the game, and more recently an official, Jim set out to reconstruct the rules of baseball and explain the theory behind them in a logical and fun way, as the game unfolds around the diamond; illustrated with history, game situations and personal observations. If that makes you think "I get it, baseball for dum-dums," you couldn't be more wrong. An ode to the national pastime, that armchair enthusiasts will enjoy, it will also educate and entertain the many players, coaches, parents and officials involved in the serious, and sometimes not-so-serious, business of baseball in America. From little league to the pros, the game remains the same. Baseball endures, and the rules abide.

Jim Tosches is a Massachusetts native and life-long baseball fan, amateur player, and umpire who resides in Encinitas, California. His love of the game results from baseball's ability to tickle all our senses and touch our lives in transcendent ways, yet is rooted in the simplicity of a pitcher staring down a hitter. His writing entertains and educates while reminding the reader why they love baseball too.

Buy on Amazon: The Rules Abide: The Thinking Fan's Guide to Baseball Rules (With History, Humor and a Few Big Words)
Jim Tosches' Website
Blog: Baseball Rules! by JT
Twitter: @TheRulesAbide

High and Inside, by Russell Rowland

Former Red Sox pitcher Pete Hurley moves to Bozeman, Montana, with only three things on his mind. He wants to build a house with his own two hands, he wants to sort out why he can’t seem to find love, and he wants to forget about his recent past. Unfortunately, Pete has brought his demons with him, including a penchant for beer and whiskey. And after only a few days, he has quickly developed many of the same problems in his new home. High and Inside is a story of alcoholism, it is a story of the price of fame, but it is also ultimately a story of redemption as Pete struggles to find a way to come to terms with the damage his drinking has done to others, and ultimately, to himself.

Russell Rowland was born and raised in Montana and returned back home in 2007 after living in twelve different states. He has an MA in Creative Writing from Boston University, and has taught at several colleges around the country, including a stint as Writer-in-Residence at St. Mary’s College. His first novel, In Open Spaces, made the San Francisco Chronicle’s bestseller list, and was named among the Best of the West by the Salt Lake City Tribune. Both The Watershed Years, the sequel to his first novel, and High and Inside were named finalists for the High Plains Book Award. Russell currently teaches private workshops and does writing coaching in Billings, Montana.

Buy on Amazon: High and Inside
Russell Rowland's Website

Nine Bucks a Pound, by James Bailey

Three seasons into his minor league career, Del Tanner can no longer ignore the obvious: He lacks the power expected of a first baseman. Despite a smooth left-handed stroke and a slick glove, he’s regarded by the brass as nothing more than a warm body clogging a roster spot in A-ball. When his aspiring agent suggests he try steroids, Del makes a choice that will shadow him for the rest of his career.

In his second novel, James Bailey (The Greatest Show on Dirt, 2012) humanizes the players fans are so often quick to demonize. Nine Bucks a Pound ponders life on baseball’s fringe and the dreams that tempt a young man to heed the devil on his shoulder.’s Jayson Stark says, “Bailey hasn’t just given us a great read. He’s given us an important window into a topic we can’t seem to stop talking about.” Adds Russell Rowland, author of High and Inside, “Bailey expertly explores how the desire to succeed at any price can lead to unexpected consequences, mostly involving a man’s relationships with others, not to mention with his own conscience. This is a powerful story about the perils of success at any price.”

Buy on Amazon: Nine Bucks a Pound
James Bailey's Website
Twitter: @James_L_Bailey

The Suitors of Spring, by Pat Jordan

On his way to publishing A False Spring, one of the greatest baseball books ever written, Pat Jordan assembled this unique collection of character studies. The profiles are honest and insightful in a way only Jordan can be. From the brilliance of Tom Seaver, who willed himself to greatness, to the indifference of Sam McDowell, who should have had Seaver's numbers; from a confident Bruce Kison, who is followed from the minors to a world series triumph; to the legendary Steve Dalkowski, who threw so fast Ted Williams refused to bat against him, yet never got a whiff of big league air. The result is a fascinating look into the hearts and minds of winners and losers, dreamers and doers, from the low minor leagues to the world series. What goes on between the lines is determined to a great degree by what is inside of each ballplayers.

Buy on Amazon: Suitors of Spring, The: The Solitary Art of Pitching, from Seaver to Sain to Dalkowski (Summer Game Books Baseball Classics)
Published By: Summer Game Books

Sol White’s Official Base Ball Guide

A fascinating and unique look at the origins of Negro League Baseball, written by one of its brightest stars. Much of what is known of these players and teams and championships comes from this work. Sol White, “King Solomon,” introduces his work this way: “I have endeavored to follow the mutations of colored base ball, as accurately as possible, from the organization of the first colored team, in 1885, to the present time [1907]…” and concludes his guide with an assertion, proven to be true 40 years later, with the arrival of Jackie Robinson. “For the players of today, with the same prospects for a future as the white players there would be a score or more of colored ballplayers cavorting around the American League or National League diamonds at the present time.” Summer Game Books presents this first eBook edition, with a detailed introduction about White and times during which he played and managed, as well as a "Who's Who" of the Sol White Guide, 14 pages of biographies of all the players discussed in the guide, including their career highlights and the lives after baseball.

Buy on Amazon: Sol White's Official Base Ball Guide (Summer Game Books Baseball Classics)
Published By: Summer Game Books

Parker Field (A Willie Black Mystery), by Howard Owen

Les Hacker doesn't seem to have an enemy in the world - other than whoever tried to kill him with a high-powered rifle while he was sitting on a park bench six floors below Willie Black's living room window. Les is the closest thing Willie has had to a father figure in a checkered life of drinking, divorces and journalism. He certainly has better qualifications than any of the other men Willie's mother, Peggy, took in over the years. Of course, as Willie would say, that would only make him a tall midget. Now, with Les clinging to life, Willie decides to take a short sabbatical and do a story about his surrogate dad and the last minor league baseball team Les played on, the 1964 Richmond Virginians. There's only one problem. As Willie tries to get in touch with other members of that team, he discovers that they are almost all below ground, most of them long before their allotted three-score and ten years. In this third Willie Black novel, after Hammett Prize winner Oregon Hill (2012), and The Philadelphia Quarry (2013), Howard Owen brings back his flawed, ink-stained hero, a reporter who seems to do his best work when he's chasing a story nobody else wants, who can be his own worst enemy and the underdog's best friend.

Howard Owen is the 2012 winner of The Hammett Prize for his novel Oregon Hill. This is his 12th novel. Like his character Willie Black, Owen was a newspaper man, and has been all his life - from reporter to executive. Among his first nine novels were the best-selling Littlejohn, The Reckoning, and Turn Signal. He and his wife, Karen, live in Richmond, Virginia. Both are currently newspaper editors.

Buy on Amazon: Parker Field (Willie Black Mystery)

The Ringer, by Jenny Shank

The Ringer tells the story of Patricia Maestas, the Mexican-American wife of a Mexican immigrant killed by police, and Ed O'Fallon, the officer who shot her husband, whose sons end up playing in the same competitive youth baseball league in Denver. Publishers Weekly said, "Shank debuts promisingly with this dramatic story that barrels toward a well-handled climax." The Ringer won the High Plains Book Award, was a finalist for the Mountains & Plains Independent Booksellers Association's Reading the West Award, and was a Tattered Cover Summer Reading selection.

Jenny Shank's stories, essays, satire, and reviews have appeared in The Atlantic, The Guardian, McSweeney's Internet Tendency, The Onion, Poets & Writers Magazine, Bust Magazine, Prairie Schooner, Alaska Quarterly Review, Dallas Morning News, High Country News, PBS MediaShift, The Rumpus, The Huffington Post and The McSweeney's Book of Politics and Musicals (Vintage, 2012). One of her stories was listed among the "Notable Essays of the Year" in the Best American Essays. She was the Denver/Boulder Editor of The Onion A.V. Club and the Books & Writers Editor of New West. She has taught creative writing at the University of Colorado, the Lighthouse Writers Workshop, and the Boulder Writing Studio. She is currently a Mullin Scholar in writing at the University of Southern California, and she lives in Boulder, Colorado with her husband, daughter, and son.

Buy on Amazon: The Ringer
Jenny Shank's Website
Twitter: @JennyShank

Dont have a Kindle? We've still got a deal for you ...

How does a paperback book for $4.99 sound? Jeff Gillenkirk's novel, Home, Away, which was ranked as one of Baseball America's 10 best baseball books of 2010, is yours for less than five bucks, direct from Chin Music Press.

Home, Away, by Jeff Gillenkirk

Jason Thibodeaux has a $42 million contract to play baseball when the son he lost in a searing custody battle reappears in his life. Home, Away follows Thibodeaux’s rise as a pitcher and his agonized decision to quit in his prime to care for his troubled son. Their evolving relationship redefines the meaning of fatherhood itself. "Custody battles, alcohol and drug problems, run-ins with the cops, raw emotions ... the stuff that real divorced parents deal with on a regular basis with children is what holds this poignant story together. Deep down, this book works." - Tom Hoffarth, LA Daily News

Jeff Gillenkirk is an author and journalist whose articles and book reviews have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Miami Herald, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Parenting magazine, The Nation, Mother Jones, America and other publications. His non-fiction book, Bitter Melon: Inside America's Last Rural All-Chinese Town, won the Commonwealth Club's Silver Medal award for best California history. In addition to his writing, Gillenkirk provides strategic communications support for community-based organizations and human rights groups in California and across the country. He served as speechwriter for former New York Governor Mario Cuomo and other public figures. He lives in San Francisco with his son and extended family.

Buy Paperback from Chin Music Press for $4.99

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