One of the more overlooked pieces of baseball equipment is the glove. It is such a common item to see on a player's hand and even fans will bring gloves to a game in hopes of catching a foul ball. But with so many gloves that available in stores and on the web, how do you know which option is the best available baseball glove for you?
**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.
How To Choose The Best Glove
Choosing the right baseball glove can make or break your fielding game. If you aren't comfortable with the glove that you have, it could result in a lot of problems when the ball is hit your way. Here are a few things that you should consider:
Size is the most important aspect to consider when choosing your next glove. If the glove doesn't fit your hand comfortably, it won't be helpful in the field, specifically with botched ground balls and drop pop flies. The size of gloves goes by age, with ages 4-6 needing a 10" glove, ages 7-9 needing an 11" glove, and ages 10 and up needing a 12" to 13" glove. Make sure when choosing a glove, you choose the correct size.
This may seem a bit obvious to some but others will make the mistake of using a glove that goes on their dominant throwing hand. It is important that if you are a right-handed player that you choose a glove marked "regular" and if you are left-handed, you select a glove marked, "all right".
The size of the pocket on your glove can make a big difference depending on what position you tend to play. For example, if you are an outfielder, you most likely will want a larger pocket to make it easier to catch fly balls. As for infielders, they would likely want a glove with a smaller pocket so they can field grounders and throw across the diamond easier.
There is a multitude of options when choosing the webbing of a glove. The webbing can be fully closed, partly closed, or even loose and open. Fully closed webbing will make it easier to catch and trap a ball in the glove but a looser, more open webbing will allow for a ball to be snagged and thrown across the field a lot quicker, without picking up large dirt clumps. Webbing should be chosen by what is best for the player's comfort.
Baseball gloves are made with a large amount of padding to protect players from possible injury. For example, catcher's mitts are bound to be the most padded because they are tasked with catching pitches for an entire game at a high velocity. So, when choosing a glove, padding will be important depending on how often the ball is coming in contact with the glove.
Changes to wrist adjustments have become popular in recent years. These adjustments are mostly made for comfort. This comfort can come from adjustment straps that will allow for a tight fit of the glove on your hand but can also increase padding on a vulnerable part of the glove hand.
Material is the last big thing to consider when choosing a new baseball glove. Gloves can be made of many different materials, most often leather, mesh, and synthetics. The most common glove used is the leather glove because they are comfortable and durable but mesh gloves provide a lightweight alternative while synthetic gloves are made for younger players. The material you choose for a glove is up to the comfort preferences of the player.
Best Glove For Specific Positions
Sometimes there are gloves that are better for specific positions. If you are a player with a set position on your team already, these features are what you should look for:
Outfielders will want to use a glove with a webbing that is closed or mostly closed while also having deep pockets that make the ball stay in the glove when catching fly balls.
Shortstops and second basemen will want to stay away from the outfield gloves and go for something with a looser webbing that allows them to grab and throw the ball quickly. They will also prefer smaller pockets so they can get a quicker grip on the ball.
On the corners, first basemen, and third basemen will want a glove comparable to an outfielder's, as they are often catching balls thrown to them from other players, especially first base. These gloves should also have a lot of padding and be durable.
Like the corner infielders, a catcher will want a closed, durable glove as he will be catching pitches for a game. This glove should also be extremely padded.
Pitchers are not often responsible for fielding balls so their glove should be comfortable and have a closed webbing so they can hide the stitches of the baseball so they do not tip their pitches.
Top 5 Best Baseball Gloves Reviews
There are multiple gloves on the market right now that are good options for anyone looking to upgrade but these are the best available gloves right now:
This fielding glove is a big hit among buyers because of its innovative style that produces comfort and durability. It combines the unusual mesh material and a leather palm that allows for a lightweight feel but durability where it counts. It is also 12" making it the perfect glove for anyone above the age of 10.
- Unisex – While some baseball gloves are made for men or women, this glove can be used by adult baseball or softball players effectively.
- Wrist Adjustments – The glove comes with a Velcro wrist adjustment that can be changed quickly in the field. Since the adjustment is Velcro, it is one of the easiest straps to use.
- Padding – The palm and index fingers in this glove provide extra padding. This padding helps avoid injury from prolonged catching of the ball and limits the pain of fielding balls.
- Deep Pockets – Rawlings markets this glove as an infielder's glove but it also has deep pockets. Deep pockets make it harder for a player to get the ball out of their glove quickly, limiting the player's ability to throw it across the diamond.
The Wilson A2000 is one of the most popular gloves available on the market and is used by major leaguers. This specific glove is designed to mimic that of Boston Red Sox player Dustin Pedroia, adding some of his own tweaks he prefers. This gives the glove many nice compliments that the typical mitt may not have.
- Pro Stock Leather – Wilson prides itself on using pro stock leather, which they have used for several years to provide one of the most durable and comfortable gloves on the market.
- Dual-Welting – This feature is unique as it provides an already curved finger slots. Because of this pre-curve, the pocket in the glove is made more durable and is better shaped for long-term use.
- Dual-Lex – This feature is also unique to this glove as there is a special material in the wrist that takes away moisture from your hand, keeping them cool, dry and ready to perform.
- Only for Elite Players – While this glove has all the bells and whistles, it's not for the average dad playing catch in the yard or even a little leaguer. This is a glove that should only be used by top level players in high school or higher up.
This glove, made by Louisville Slugger, is similar to that of the Rawlings Renegade Series glove that was featured earlier. It is a sleek infielder's glove that provides a strong combination of comfort and durability. While it is like the Renegade Series, the HD9 series has a few unique characteristics.
- Hybrid Glove – The palm of the glove is treated with premium gaucho leather, which allows for a durable, lasting glove. The outside is made with mesh, which gives it a lightweight feel while remaining durable.
- Shallow Pocket – The pocket of the glove is shallow, as an infielder glove should be, allowing for easier transitions of the ball from the glove to the hand.
- Dual Hand Glove – While some gloves only sell a right-handed glove or a left-handed glove, Louisville Slugger sells this glove for both right-handed and left-handed throwers.
- Not Necessarily a Game Glove – While this glove is great to use throughout middle and high school games, it is smaller than the typical adult glove and many reports using it more as a warm up or training glove.
Louisville Slugger makes a lot of different gloves other than the HD9 series and one of the other most popular brands is the Genesis. This glove is one of the most popular on the market because it is specifically made for developing players looking to improve their game. The Genesis series has been one of the longest running gloves available and carries many perks.
- Soft Material – The genesis glove is made with some of the softest materials, featuring a nylon mesh back and a buffalo leather that makes the glove durable but also light and soft.
- Easy to Break In – While some gloves take a while to break-in by playing catch and using it a lot, the Genesis glove is ready to go from day one because of its soft and flexible material.
- Closed Webbing – With a closed web, the Genesis makes for a good glove to use as a young pitcher, still trying to figure out pitches without giving them away, or in the outfield.
- Training Glove – As mentioned above, this is more of a training glove and its small size, 10.5", makes it a much better fit for a young person who is still learning the game and trying to become better.
The Nokona X2 is one of the most desirable gloves on the market. It is hand crafted and is touted as one of the best all-around gloves available today. And unlike many of the other gloves that have been mentioned, the X2 is completely leather and made for almost any position to be able to use.
- Ready to Play – The biggest positive that this glove provides is that it requires almost no need to break it in. Some of the elite gloves, especially leather ones, take time to break in and get comfortable with but this glove is ready to go right from the shelf.
- Strong Leather – Nokona makes their gloves with a mix of stampede and kangaroo leather, which gives it one of the most durable and flexible feels of any glove available.
- Made for Both Hands – Nokona doesn't cater to only right-handed throwers, as many companies do, and the X2 is available to lefties and righties.
- Made for Elite Players – This glove will give one of the best performances of any glove on the market and that is why it is made for the most elite players in the game and not for the average, playground type of player.
These gloves are all great options for anyone looking to purchase one but your best choice would be to go for the Rawlings Renegade Series glove. It is the perfect middle ground between the training gloves and the elite gloves. It can also be used by either sex, making it the perfect option for a baseball or a softball player. Best of all, it has many of the features that are popular in today's game, including the wrist adjustments and extra padding on the fingers. And while the pockets of the Renegade Series are deeper than they should be for an infielder's glove, it can still be used effectively by any player. Do you agree that this is the best glove out of the others on the list? Please feel free to leave a comment or include other gloves that you think should have made this list.