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Baseball GlovesChoosing the right glove can mean the difference between average fielding and great fielding. Your choice of baseball glove will affect your performance and, ultimately, your enjoyment. The right glove can go a long way to improving your catching and fielding abilities. Many factors must be considered when you are choosing a new baseball glove. Here, we help you understand what these options mean and how you can use them to your advantage.
POSITION: The position you play is probably the most important factor you need to consider when choosing a baseball glove. Gloves have certain features that are position-specific and help the player perform well.
Catcher’s Mitts are more of a fingerless mitten than an actual glove. It is heavily padded to help reduce the sting of high velocity balls.
Pitchers tend to choose closed webbing to help hid the ball from the hitter, but there is no standard baseball glove for pitchers.
First Baseman spend much of the game catching balls thrown very hard. As a result, a 1st Baseman's Glove is slightly more padded than traditional infielder or outfielder gloves. These gloves are also longer to help the player field throws easier.
Infielder's Gloves are smaller, five-fingered baseball gloves with shallow pockets. This design allows the player to easily scoop up ground balls and quickly pull the ball out of the glove and throw it.
Outfielder's Gloves tend to be larger and longer than infielder gloves to enable them to catch high-flying balls more easily.
If you will be playing multiple positions in one season, either opt for a baseball glove for the position you will be playing most often or choose a utility glove which allows for this nomadic approach.
MATERIAL AND CONSTRUCTION The material of a baseball glove is also a major deciding factor. Leather baseball gloves are the most popular since they offer the best control, feel, and comfort. The leather should be sturdy and fairly stiff. A good rule of thumb is the higher the quality of leather, the more durable the glove. A baseball glove made of treated leather has chemicals added to it to help it break in faster and to keep its shape. However, these gloves generally do not last as long as the leather glove and are difficult to repair.
Other baseball gloves are made of plastic and synthetic materials. These gloves can be easier to break in, but are less durable and can seldom be repaired. These less expensive gloves are usually recommended for younger players since they generally use a baseball glove only for one or two seasons.