Rooting for Rafael Rosales

Rafael has dreams. Every chance he gets he plays in the street games trying to build his skills, get noticed by scouts, and—someday—play Major League Baseball. Maya has worries. The bees are dying all over the world, and the company her father works for is responsible, making products that harm the environment. Follow Rafael and Maya in a story that shifts back and forth in time and place, from Rafael’s neighborhood in the Dominican Republic to present-day Minnesota, where Maya and her sister are following Rafael’s first year in the minor leagues. In their own ways, Maya and Rafael search for hope, face difficult choices, and learn a secret—the same secret—that forever changes how they see the world.

  • 288 Pages
  • 5.5" x 8"
  • 9780807567425
  • April 2017

Buy from Albert Whitman

  • 304 Pages
  • 5.5" x 8"
  • 9780807567449
  • March 2018

Buy from Albert Whitman

  • 9780807567432
  • April 2017

Other Places to Buy


  • Scaletta weaves a powerful story of two children whose realities seem entirely dissimilar but, in truth, converge in significant ways, namely in their desire to excel and make a difference.

    - Publishers Weekly

  • Scaletta deftly weaves worry, optimism, and determination together…The tight focus on the emotional lives of his protagonists in these connecting narratives inspires genuine feeling for each. Full of heart and hope.

    - Kirkus Reviews starred review

  • Thoughtfully written and plenty engaging. The hardship of growing up poor in a Dominican neighborhood, with baseball one of the few ways out, is vividly portrayed.

    - Booklist

  • Rafael and Maya are intriguing characters, and Scaletta sensitively limns their concerns and circumstances…Thoughtful readers who enjoy compelling characters and learning about how baseball is played in other countries may appreciate this title.

    - School Library Journal

  • This title is an engaging match for readers interested in baseball, yet also is a touching story of the many ways we are connected to those around us. Both Maya and Rafael are likeable characters, and readers will find themselves rooting for them as the story unfolds.

    - School Library Connection


  • Accelerated Reader Points: 7
  • ATOS Level: 4.5