How to Choose a Baseball Glove
No matter the level of competition, having confidence when stepping out onto the baseball field is key. With the right size of baseball glove, you’re able to not only increase your confidence but improve your overall performance. Whether you’re picking out a glove for yourself or a young baseball player, knowing the basics of how to choose a baseball glove is a key step to playing your best on the field. Since there are a combination of different factors that go into determining which baseball glove is right for you or your player, our Baseball Experts break down what you need to know in order to choose a baseball glove. Once you narrow down the size and style of baseball glove you need, see what our Experts suggest are the best baseball gloves of the year.
How To Measure a Baseball Glove
Before identifying which baseball glove size will fit best, it's important to have a basic understanding of how to measure a glove. All baseball gloves and catcher’s mitts will have a size listed, usually in inches.
- To determine the size of a baseball glove, measure from the tip of the index finger along the palm to the heel of the glove. Most baseball gloves don’t measure greater than 12.5 inches.
- When looking for a catcher’s mitt, you’ll notice that the sizing of the glove is between 32.5 to 34 inches. That’s because a catcher’s mitt is measured by the circumference.
Baseball Glove Size & Position
When finding the right size baseball glove, there are several factors to consider including hand size, age, and field position. The baseball glove size charts below are a great starting point in narrowing your size options.
Youth Baseball Glove Size Chart
|Age||Baseball Glove Size|
|5 & under||9" - 10"|
|6 - 7||10" - 10.5"|
|8 - 10||10.75" - 11.5"|
|11 -12||11" - 12"|
Youth Catcher's Mitt Size Chart
|Age||Catcher's Glove Size|
|Under 7||29.5" - 30"|
|8 - 10||30" - 32"|
|11 - 13||31" - 32.5"|
High School & Adult Baseball Glove Size Chart
|Infield||11" - 12.25"|
|Outfield||12.5" - 12.75"|
|First Base||12" - 13"|
|Pitcher||11.5" - 12.5"|
|Catcher||32.5" - 34"|
Depending on your position, you’ll want to look for specific features within a baseball glove to help improve your overall performance. It’s important to note that if you’re a utility player or are just starting to play baseball, it’s more important that your baseball glove feels comfortable than meets all the requirements below. Below is a summary of what to look for in a baseball glove based on your position.
- Infield Gloves: If you’re playing an infield position, you’ll use a smaller glove with a shallow pocket. This allows infielders to quickly transfer the ball from the glove to their throwing hand.
- Outfield Gloves: For an outfield position, you’ll typically want a larger glove with a deep pocket. With the extra length, outfielders have a longer reach to snag fly balls, while the deeper pocket offers added control after the catch.
- First Base Mitts: Playing first base is one of the most demanding positions on the field. A first base mitt is constructed as more of a hybrid between a catcher’s mitt and an infield glove because first basemen spend much of their time catching throws or fielding ground balls. The mitt-style construction provides a deeper pocket for easier catching and scooping up ground balls, while the extended length of the mitt makes fielding throws easier.
- Pitcher’s Gloves: When you’re a pitcher, you’ll use a glove nearly the same size as an infielder, but you’ll want to pay more attention to the webbing on the glove. With a closed web-pattern, a pitcher can hide their grip to prevent the batter from knowing which pitch is coming their way.
- Catcher’s Mitts: With a catcher’s mitt, you should be most concerned about which size offers the best feel for your hand. With the right size catcher’s mitt for your hand, you’re able to catch and transfer the baseball quickly.
Baseball Glove Web Types
Aside from size and position, you’ll also want to consider the baseball glove’s web type. To improve efficiency in catching and transferring the ball, you’ll want to find the right glove web type that matches your preferences and position. Below is a brief summary of the four most common web types.
- I-Web: A baseball glove featuring an I-Web is mostly used by infielders. This webbing is an ideal size and will sift through dirt when scooping up a ground ball.
- Modified Trapeze: The modified trapeze webbing, often referred to as mod trap, is used by infielders or the pitcher. With a mod trap design, there is a leather strip down the middle of the webbing to provide more stability as well as help hide the pitcher’s grip.
- Two-Piece: This style of webbing is mainly used by pitchers because this webbing option helps conceal the pitcher’s grip the best. Added coverage means added weight, so a glove with a two-piece webbing is typically used by older players with more strength.
- H-Web: Depending on the glove’s size, the H-Web webbing can be used by infielders or outfielders. With the leather strips making an “H” pattern, this webbing is very strong yet allows players to see through the webbing to locate fly balls.
Aside from these four baseball glove web types, there are a few more position-specific web types including basket, trapeze, single-post, and dual-post.
For a brief review of how to choose the right baseball glove, one of our baseball experts, Jimmy, summarizes what you need to keep in mind before picking out your next glove.
Now that you have a basic understanding of how to choose a baseball glove—considering your age, playing position, and webbing—you’re ready to start browsing in store or online for your next glove. Just remember when choosing your baseball glove, it’s all about personal preference and comfort. If you need additional help or have questions about how to choose a baseball glove, contact your local SCHEELS to speak with a baseball expert!
Looking for other new baseball equipment? Check out our two expert blogs—How to Choose a Baseball Bat and the Best Baseball Cleats.