Like King Arthur’s Excalibur, every hero needs that essential tool that helps them succeed.
For baseball players, that tool is a baseball glove.
Baseball bats come and go, but the best baseball gloves can last a lifetime.
Whether you’re looking for the best youth baseball glove or adult, it’s imperative that you study baseball glove reviews.
These will allow you to identify the baseball glove brands that deliver the quality products you’re looking for to reach the highest levels of play.
But, choosing the best baseball glove can be a tough decision.
Even if you study the top 10 baseball glove brands, you’re looking at over twenty different gloves, each with its own design and unique features.
Not to mention, there are varying styles depending on what position you’re playing.
- Best Baseball Glove 2019 Buying Guide
- Top 10 Best Baseball Glove Brands
- The Different Types Of Baseball Glove Webbings
- Baseball Glove Types By Position
- What Is The Best Type Of Glove For Pitchers?
- What Is The Best Type of Glove For Infielders?
- What Is The Best Type of Glove For First Base?
- What Is The Best Type of Glove For Second Base?
- What Is The Best Type of Glove For Shortstop?
- What Is The Best Type of Glove For Third Base?
- What Is The Best Type of Glove For Outfielders?
- What Is The Best Type of Glove For Catchers?
- The Best Baseball Glove For Each Position
- Best Baseball Gloves For Pitchers
- Best Baseball Gloves For Infielders
- Best Baseball Mitts For First Basemen
- Best Baseball Gloves For Outfielders
- Best Baseball Mitts For Catchers
- Best Youth Baseball Mitts
Best Baseball Glove 2019 Buying Guide
The purpose of this 2019 Buying Guide for Baseball Gloves is to answer some of the most commonly asked questions with regards to buying the best baseball gloves, as well as acting as a resource that you can use when you shop for your glove, no matter if you’re looking for an adult glove or the best youth baseball glove.
By the end of this guide, you’ll have the necessary information to answer that one key question that all fielders ask: what is the best baseball glove for me?
How Does A Baseball Glove Work?
This may seem like a silly question, but, in order to shop for the best baseball gloves, you need to understand how each part of the glove functions.
Not only will this give you a stronger appreciation for every inch of your glove, but you’ll also be able to better understand baseball glove reviews and the features of each product that make them unique and high-performing.
This is the bottom of the inside of your glove, right where you’re hand fits. When sizing a glove, the heel is where you measure from (more on this later). The heal is padded with typically high density foam. Some gloves may reinforce this with a plastic insert.
Top quality baseball gloves will feature two separate pads on either side of the heel, which allows the glove to flex and close more easily.
The next-door neighbor of the heel, the hinge is the crease of the glove where it folds to close.
You can usually find the hinge by tracing the stitching on either side of the glove to the point where they meet at the bottom.
This is where the player’s fingers go when they put the glove on.
The one thing to note about finger stalls is the difference between a baseball glove and a baseball mitt. Mitts don’t have individual finger stalls.
Catchers and first basemen are the only positions concerned with looking for the best baseball mitt.
This is the center of the glove and lines up with where the player’s palm is inside the glove.
The palm is a common place to catch the ball, so expect a lot of padding in this area.
Catcher’s mitts have five times as much padding as a normal, position-player’s glove.
When possible, it’s advantageous for infielders to try and catch balls with the palm of the glove, as it makes transferring the ball to your throwing hand easier than digging it out of the deep webbing.
This is the next big catch zone of your glove.
Catching a ball in the webbing isn’t painful, as catching in the palm can be, but it may take a few microseconds longer to transfer the ball and make a throw.
There’s several types of webbings that are favored by different players and positions. We’ll get into this more later in the guide.
How To Size A Baseball Glove
Aside from knowing how a glove functions and the purpose of each part, you also need to know how to properly size a glove.
Otherwise, you could find yourself buying a glove that is too small or too large for your person or position.
Most gloves display the size somewhere on the leather, usually along the pinky or thumb finger stalls.
If you aren’t sure of the size, you can measure it yourself with a fabric tape measure by checking the length from the middle of the glove’s heel to the top of the index finger stall.
Your typical baseball glove will run from 8 inches (youth baseball gloves) to 15 inches, with catcher’s mitts measuring as high as 35 inches!
The ideal size for a glove is based on the player’s position and their personal preference.
Some players may like a glove that is a little larger, or smaller, than the recommended length for their position.
Again, these are recommended sizes. If you prefer a smaller or larger glove, then play with what best suits your preferences.
Top 10 Best Baseball Glove Brands
Before you know what to buy, you need to know the top 10 baseball gloves brands, as this will help you know which manufacturers to buy from.
There are many baseball glove brands that you’ll be familiar with, like Nike or Rawlings, but many don’t operate outside of the glove industry, which means they aren’t those household names we’re used to seeing.
Nonetheless, each company on this list makes a strong case for being the best baseball glove company out there.
It really boils down to player preference and price.
There is no sport out there that doesn’t know the name Nike and its swoosh logo.
It is easily the most recognizable sports apparel and equipment brand because they consistently make high-quality, stylish products.
They also make good baseball gloves that range the spectrum from youth to adult and affordable to expensive.
Wilson is a dominant force in the industry and, without a doubt, one of the best glove brands out there.
Their Wilson A2000 and A2K model gloves are the highest rated baseball gloves all the way up to the pro levels.
No matter what position or type of player you are, these top baseball gloves are always a great option.
One of the oldest baseball glove brands on the market and they are still making top baseball gloves today.
That alone is enough to be on this list of top 10 baseball gloves brands, but it definitely helps that their products are made from quality materials and with great design elements.
Next to Wilson, Rawlings is the other titan of baseball glove manufacturers.
Their top gloves are made from only the highest grade leather, which guarantees quality and long-lasting durability.
These gloves are used and loved by players at all levels of the game, including Major League Baseball.
While not a household brand name, that shouldn’t stop you from exploring the Nokona company.
One of the standout qualities of their top baseball gloves is the kangaroo leather that the products are made from.
This exotic material is extremely lightweight. It’s also one of the most durable leathers in the world.
That’s the best of both worlds!
In terms of the leather of the glove, the only brand that perhaps rivals Nokona’s kangaroo leather is the Shoeless Joe company.
That’s because their gloves are specially made to feel, look and even smell like a vintage baseball glove.
They use aged, antique tobacco leathers that are hand-sewn and rubbed with “Old Time Ingredients.”
The experience of playing with a Shoeless Joe glove is unlike any other.
Based in Japan, Mizuno has quickly become a favorite brand for many baseball players.
Mizuno’s entire focus is on making equipment that functions at a high level.
Their baseball gloves feature cutting-edge designs and patterns that put them a step above.
If you’re a catcher, then you definitely want to pay close attention to the All Star brand.
While they do make gloves for all positions, it’s their catcher’s mitts that really shine.
And, many of their gloves and mitts are reasonably priced.
There’s no doubt that the Easton brand name carries a lot of weight in the baseball world, especially when it comes to their always-cutting-edge bats.
In terms of gloves, they are also a top competitor and a must-include name when discussing who makes the best baseball glove.
There’s a lot of similarities between a glove company like Under Armour and Nike. Both are better known for their all-sport athletic apparel.
Yet, neither company lets that stop them from developing great baseball gloves for players of all ages and levels of play.
High-end Under Armour baseball gloves are some of the best tools that money can buy.
The Different Types Of Baseball Glove Webbings
There’s eight different styles of webbings, each with its own purpose or intent.
The type of webbing most suited for your best all around baseball glove will largely depend on your position, but there is some simple personal preference at play too, as there’s sometimes multiple different styles for one position.
Basket Web: Many types of webbings have small or large openings in between the stitching or the web itself, as is the case with I- or H-webs. Basket webbed gloves can be easier to close because of the interweaving leather pieces that create the basket.
Trapeze Web: Capable of opening wider than other glove webbings, the trapeze is a great option for players that need a larger catch zone.
Modified Trapeze Web: These gloves mirror a trapeze, but have a more reinforced webbing thanks to added construction to the top of the glove.
This added stability is good for snagging a scorching line drive with the top of the glove, as the reinforced webbing won’t bend back at the hard impact of the ball.
I-Web: Named because the leather of the webbing creates an I-shaped pattern, these gloves promise quick catching and transferring to throwing hand.
The transparent webbing makes it a little easier to catch pop flys, as you can look right through the webbing.
Dual Post Web: Also known as the H-web, this style shares a lot of commonalities with the I-web, but they are a little sturdier and more flexible.
Single Post Web: This web style looks a lot like an I-web, but with an added horizontal strip.
It provides great visibility that is good for receiving a ball around the infield or pop flys.
Double Post Web: Single and double post webs look very different from one another, but they function very similarly.
The biggest difference is that double post webs don’t have that supreme visibility.
Two-Piece Web: These gloves are generally heavier because there’s added leather in the webbing, which is stitched tightly together.
Similar to the basket web, the two-piece web is closed, so there’s no visibility.
Baseball Glove Types By Position
Each position on the diamond has unique responsibilities, which separates it from the other eight spots.
Depending on what part of the field you play, you need the best baseball glove type to help you handle those duties.
What Is The Best Type Of Glove For Pitchers?
The best glove for a pitcher is something with a closed webbing. This helps disguise their grip on the ball.
If they used an I-web glove, it would be easy for the batter to pick up what type of pitch is coming, based on the gripping.
Thus, pitchers generally prefer a basket or two-piece web.
In terms of the biomechanics of pitching, the heavier two-piece webbed gloves act as a slight counterweight to the pitching arm.
What Is The Best Type of Glove For Infielders?
Infielders have a lot of options when it comes to the type of webbing in their glove.
By far, the most favorable is the I-web, especially for middle-infielders.
These gloves are typically lighter, so the player can really flash their glove for a quick catch, whether on a line or a grounder.
And, the webbing has high visibility, which helps when a player is covering the bag or settling under an infield flyball.
Single post and H-web gloves are also great options for infielders.
What Is The Best Type of Glove For First Base?
As mentioned before, first basemen actually use baseball mitts, instead of gloves.
These are better for scooping balls in the dirt, which can potentially save a bad throw from skipping by the fielder and hand the runner an easy extra base.
As far as webbing style, the number three position favors the single post web.
What Is The Best Type of Glove For Second Base?
The great visibility and lightweight design of I-web gloves is perfect for any middle infielder.
What Is The Best Type of Glove For Shortstop?
Same as second base, the I-web is really unmatched, especially when you want to quickly transfer the ball and try and turn two.
What Is The Best Type of Glove For Third Base?
The best glove for third base is a toss up between an I and H-web.
Like any infield position, the I-web is a great and popular choice.
But, third basemen will sometimes choose an H-web because it is a little sturdier and can help stand up against bullets down the line.
What Is The Best Type of Glove For Outfielders?
Outfielders are split on which style is the best.
Some prefer the visibility of an h-web style, while others like a trapeze or modified trapeze webbing, because this creates the most amount of catching surface.
More catching surface is great when you are ranging to make a long catch and need that extra inch of leather.
What Is The Best Type of Glove For Catchers?
Catchers need an extra padded mitt that is specifically designed for the position.
Some catcher’s mitts use a brighter color leather in the pocket, which makes it easier for the pitcher to see the target.
The Best Baseball Glove For Each Position
Now that we’ve looked at the best types of gloves for each position, it’s time to look at specific gloves from some of the best glove brands.
Unlike our typical review guides, which include lengthy descriptions of each product, this buyer’s guide will be much more brief.
We’ll look at two options for each position, including some options for the best youth baseball glove.
Best Youth Baseball Mitts
Best In Show: Rawlings Renegade Youth Series Baseball Gloves
We mentioned the Rawlings Renegade as one of the best baseball gloves for first base, but there are also youth Renegades available in different styles for other positions.
The Renegade stands out because of its soft, quality leather.
The youth models feel no different from their adult counterparts, so any young athlete can feel just like the big pros.
And, it is possibly the best youth baseball glove for players that want to save some money because it is one of the best affordable baseball gloves too.
Runner Up: Mizuno Youth MVP Prime Future GMVP1150PY1 Glove
It’s no secret that youth players can be a little afraid of the ball, whether they are at the plate or in the field.
The Mizuno Youth MVP Prime Future tries to fix this issue with Tartan Shock Webbing.
This feature is designed to reduce any sting or discomfort felt when catching or fielding a ball.
It’s helped by the soft, smooth leather that is oil-rubbed for even added comfort!
This glove is very versatile and is usable by youth infielders, outfielders and pitchers.
Honorable Mention: Mizuno Prospect GXF102 Youth First Base Mitt
This product is designed for a youth first baseman and it has a lot of performance-enhancing features that help this position.
For example, the ParaShock Palm Pad cuts down on any pain caused by catching a hard-thrown ball.
Another feature, the Power Close/Lock technology, allows this mitt to open and close more naturally than other models.
This can be an invaluable tool for a young player that is only just learning how to properly catch a ball.
As you journey to find your Excalibur, the best baseball glove for you, we hope that this buying guide is a resource you can continuously rely on to answer questions and refer back to.
For more in-depth baseball gloves reviews, be sure to check the other resources on this website.