When baseball season comes around, almost every child wants a baseball or T-ball glove of their own. This is a glove that they wear during their practices and games, which ensures that they get both protection and a proper playing experience.
With the right kind of baseball glove, it’s possible to catch balls more easily. This way, fast balls wouldn’t hurt the player’s hand and they’d get a good grips them as well. Plus, wearing such gloves is considered to be part of the baseball uniform. Many facilities and schools might not even allow a child to play baseball if they don’t have a baseball glove with them.
The Importance of a Good Fit
When we think about enhancing the baseball skills of our kids or anyone else, we might tend to overlook the fielding part of the game. This is a pity, as fielding is half of baseball itself. We should emphasize this aspect of the game, as focusing upon it can help to shape a well-rounded player and a successful team.
The ideal baseball glove should have a perfect fit and be comfortable enough for long wearing periods. Without this feature, it would probably be hard for any baseball player to play well. If the glove is too small, it can cause hand injuries and chafing. If it’s too large, it would slide about on the player’s hand, making it hard to catch any kind of ball. Either way, players usually wouldn’t be able to wear an ill-fitting baseball glove for the whole game.
Since gloves are usually subjected to rough usage, the ideal choice would also be made of durable material and sturdy stitching. You should take all these factors into account when buying a small-sized baseball glove. To make things easier for you, below are some tips on choosing just the right baseball glove for your child or for anyone who requires one in a small size:
A small-sized glove needs to be just as durable as a regular-sized one, perhaps even more so. Children are more prone to use their gloves roughly. They might also leave it lying around and not take proper care of it. Hence, the glove you end up purchasing should be one that can withstand a lot of use. It should ideally be able to last through the season, if not several.
The best materials you can choose for a small-size baseball glove are vinyl, leather, or a composite of the two. Vinyl is the cheapest option, though it may not last more than two seasons at the most. It’s also hard to break in, making it difficult to close when the wearer tries to catch a ball. A leather option, though, would be softer, more long-lasting, and be easier to wear for a long time. The composite option is a compromise between the two, being cheaper than leather and more flexible than vinyl.
Make sure the size is suited to the person who’d be wearing the glove. Measure the glove from below the palm area to the top where the index finger would fit. This measurement could range from 8-15 inches, but depending upon the hand it should fit, it could be smaller. If it’s your first time buying a small-sized glove, there’s no better option than trying on some likely sizes.
The best size would be one that fits the whole palm, is snug but not tight on the wrist, and allows for comfortable finger movement. Make sure that the player can close the glove with his or her hand inside it, and then open it again easily enough.
3. Right or Left
If your child is left-handed, bear in mind that a regular right-handed glove won’t work for them. See which hand they throw and catch with, and buy their glove accordingly. A right-handed thrower would need a glove for the left hand and vice versa. Your child’s school or sports facility might not stock gloves for the right hand, so this is another reason to conduct proper research before buying one yourself.
4. Buying Large
Parents of growing children might feel like buying gloves in larger sizes would be the best investment. High-quality baseball gloves can be expensive, so many parents feel like they want to get the most use out of their purchase by planning for the future when the child grows bigger.
However, you should only consider buying one size or half a size larger than the exact fit for a growing child. If the glove you get is 2-3 inches bigger than the player requires, this would make it hard to open, close, or even carry the glove. It would become heavy on the child’s hand, leading to possible injuries and fatigue.
5. Positional Gloves
There are different positions in baseball, so players need special gloves for each position. The catcher would use a certain kind of glove, while the outfielders use more regular ones with a slightly larger pocket. The special glove for a catcher might not be so useful if the player is still learning the game. You should consult a coach or the staff of a sports equipment store about the best choice of gloves in such cases.
Choosing the Right Small-Sized Baseball Glove
Some people are also naturally built in a way that they require small-sized baseball gloves. These individuals might have to opt for youth-sized or child-sized baseball gloves. Luckily, there are several high-quality options in the market today, so one doesn’t have to compromise on getting a decent glove that fits their hand. We’ll discuss some of these choices below:
Since left-handed players usually face difficulty getting quality baseball equipment, let’s start here with a glove especially for them. If your young baseball champ is a lefty, they’d probably be playing first base most of the time. This Mizuno glove is a perfect fit for that particular position, with both right- and left-handed options.
The main features of this glove include its soft leather, a high adjustability level, and a design that closes very easily. Since the material is mostly leather, the break-in period will be quite short. The adjustability is especially good for growing children and will satisfy parents on a budget as well.
The one downside here is that while the leather is incredibly soft, the manufacturers might have skimped on the padding to some extent. Some reviewers reported that they felt a sting when they caught a hard ball with this glove. If the intended wearer can take it, this glove is among the best options out there.
Nokona is one of the most famous makers of baseball gloves in the United States. It’s hence no surprise that we see one of its offerings on this list. You’ll be assured of a high quality with this option, along with some of the best materials around. This particular glove is made of fine buffalo hide and several other quality kinds of leather.
This glove also has the patented Nokona pocket, which is great for catching and fielding in any baseball game. The design is sturdy and meant to last several seasons, giving a soft and comfortable experience to its wearer.
However, we should keep in mind that the cost of this baseball glove is quite high. It might not be in the budget for every player or their parents. The special finger slots and a small opening at the wrists come at a price, so make sure your player is absolutely ready for this commitment.
We have another offering from Mizuno here, as this is also one of the best-known names for providing baseball equipment. This particular glove is pocket-friendly, but that doesn’t mean that it compromises on quality. While you may not pay as much for this glove, it still has a great appearance and strong stitching that will stand a lot of rough usage.
This glove should help any young or smallish baseball player to ace their practice. Plus, the adjustable wrist strap means that the glove can keep up with growing bodies and changing sizes.
However, we shouldn’t expect a buttery soft leather quality here. In order to get that comfy experience, this glove might require quite a bit of breaking in.
This junior baseball glove is available for both right- and left-orientations, so you can place your order according to your needs. The leather here is a specially aged and treated one, giving us a soft experience from the very beginning.
Another excellent feature here is the XRD Extreme Impact Protection padding in the glove. This will cushion the impact of hard balls and help your young player stay safe in the field. According to reviewers online, the break-in period for this glove is quite short. On the downside, there aren’t really many reviews to go by.
This glove option has a PVC construction, which is great for durability. Each finger here has two leather strips that provide a long-lasting, comfortable experience that also protects the players on the field.
Some might find the PVC material too warm for comfort, but that depends on how long you have to wear the glove. For average practices, the breathable inner lining should be enough to wick away moisture from the skin.
Getting the proper small-sized baseball glove would help any child or a small-statured person to enjoy the game properly. The right fit would achieve that necessary comfort level in order to stay safe on the field as well. Go into a sporting goods store to try on a few different kinds. Ask the right questions, and you’ll have the perfect glove in no time. Remember, though, that the shopping and the playing should both remain a fun learning activity. You can also find out more here at The Baseball Stop.
You might also want to read up on the names of the best baseball manufacturers today. This information can help you shortlist the right kind of small-sized baseball gloves. You’ll also be surer of the quality and durability, so the extra effort is worth it.