A sweaty baseball uniform covered with dirt and grass stains is a sign of a great and entertaining baseball game. As you walk off the field, those marks prove how much fun you had and how hard you tried to give your best. While they are excellent insignias, you must eliminate them to keep your baseball uniform clean, look bright, and smell good on your next outing.
Sadly, properly caring for your baseball uniform is no small task, especially if you’re like other players who follow the same routine: picking and wearing your baseball gear from the locker room, hitting and enjoying on the field, and getting showers after the game is done.
The catch is that proper maintenance of your baseball uniform is also necessary to ensure that it can continue to last and look fresh inning after inning. In this article, we’ll tackle all the best tips for maintaining your baseball uniform.
Washing Your Baseball Uniform is the Key
A clean baseball uniform will last longer and likely see another tournament than a filthy one. So, the best way to maintain your baseball uniform is by washing it after each game.
After all the dives and slides, your baseball uniform deserves a good wash. If not, all the dirt, sweat, and stains will embed more deeply in the fabric, making it harder to clean and shortening its lifespan.
However, washing your baseball uniform doesn’t mean simply throwing it away into the washing machine, adding some detergent, setting it on hot, leaving it, and doing other errands. You may know baseball uniforms are not made of cotton but are instead made of polyester and require special care.
Tip #1: Sort and Separate Your Baseball Uniform From The Laundries
One of the most essential tips when washing your baseball uniform is to separate it from other laundry. Other types of clothing, particularly blue jeans, may bleed color and ruin your baseball uniform. If you’re washing multiple baseball jerseys and pants, it’s also best to wash them separately per color and avoid unwanted color streaks.
Moreover, you should also wash other parts of the uniform, like socks, cup protectors, and chest protectors, separately from the baseball jerseys, undershirts, and pants. Other items may be abrasive for them, causing snags and damaging your uniform.
Lastly, don’t miss out on checking the pockets and removing seeds, gums, and other items or debris, if there are any. Those items making contact with your baseball uniform can also result in friction and promote untimely wear.
Tip #2: Always Pre-Treat Before Washing Your Baseball Uniform
As baseball uniforms must be washed on a more delicate wash cycle, you must get rid of all the stubborn stains prior to throwing them into the washing machine. You can do this and lift all the dirt by pre-soaking.
Simply fill a bucket with cold water and add two tablespoons of laundry detergent. Choose one with ample surfactants and enzymes that can break up the stains. Then, you can put one cup of baking soda to remove the smell of sweat and other pesky odors.
Soak your baseball uniform for 20 minutes to up to 24 hours. Just be wary that longer soaking allows better penetration into the fabric and better stain-removal results.
Alternatively, you may also use vinegar and water in the pre-soaking process. What you must avoid is using chlorine bleach, as they are too harsh, stripping away the outer layer and damaging your baseball uniform.
If there are still stubborn stains left after pre-soaking, you can gently scrub them using a scrub brush, sponge, or clean toothbrush to help loosen and release the dirt particles before washing. Try to clean any stains as soon as possible before they harden and get more challenging to remove.
Tip #3: Turn Your Baseball Uniform Inside Out and Don’t Unbutton It
Before putting your baseball uniform in the washing machine, ensure that you first turn it inside out. Doing so prevents the print, decals, numbers, names, patches, and logos from having direct contact with the laundry detergent. Thus, keeping your baseball uniform’s colors from quickly fading. Meanwhile, you should also keep your baseball uniform buttoned. If not, the button may snag onto other clothing and lead to damage.
Tip #4: Wash Your Baseball Uniform Under the Correct Settings
After soaking, you can now wash your baseball uniform in the washer. Remember to wash in cold or warm water (not hot!) to avoid damaging your pants and jersey. Cold water prevents shrinkage and fading, but warm water is best for thorough cleaning. You may choose the water temperature depending on how filthy your baseball uniform is.
Use only detergents suitable for baseball jerseys, possibly ones specially designed for athletic wear and with color-protecting properties. Opt also for liquid ones, as they dissolve better and are less harsh than powdered ones. On the other hand, you should avoid adding fabric softeners and instead put a bit of vinegar in the bleach dispenser when dealing with tough odors.
Always use the gentle setting on your washer and set it on short cycles. Keeping your baseball uniform in longer, more intense cycles can damage its fabric. Take your baseball uniform out of the washing machine immediately at the end of the cycle.
Tip #5: Air-Dry Your Baseball Uniform
After washing your baseball uniform, get a rust-proof hanger, like plastic or wood, and hang it to air-dry on a clothesline. Alternatively, you may lay your baseball uniform over a drying rack. Ensure that there’s no direct sunlight, as high heat can cause the fading of colors, shrinkage, and setting of stains. As such, it’s also not advisable to dry your baseball uniform in a hot clothes dryer.
If you need to dry your baseball uniform quickly, you may tumble dry it on the lowest temperature available or an “air only” setting. Don’t overload the dryer with other laundries to allow air to circulate properly and let your baseball uniform dry more effectively.
1. How Often To Wash Your Baseball Uniform?
You must wash your baseball uniform whenever it gets dirty, typically after each game. Never store a dirty uniform. Stains will set deeply into the fabric, and bacteria will start to harbor, making the uniform unfit for use in the next season. Always wash your baseball uniform before storing it. You can either hang or fold your baseball uniform during storage.
2. Can You Iron Your Baseball Uniform?
What’s great about baseball uniforms is that they tend to be wrinkle-fee once you properly wash and dry them. If it still needs some ironing or you simply want it to look better, perhaps for a big game or a photo ops, set the iron to a very low temperature and use a thin cloth over the polyester fabric to protect it. Be wary that high temperatures can quickly melt the decals, print, and fabric.
3. How Should You Wash Your Baseball Cap?
You must clean your baseball caps by hand washing. To do so, just fill a bucket or sink with cold or warm water. Then, add a couple of drops of mild detergent. Let it soak for about 15 minutes. Rinse thoroughly under cold water to remove the detergent and wash away the dirt. Lastly, reshape your baseball cap and let it air dry.
Maintaining your baseball uniform in mint condition may seem intimidating at first, but it will become easier once you’ve learned the ropes. Just be consistent, and your gear will last longer and help you always look great on the baseball field. Cheers!