How to Break in a Baseball Glove (The Right Way) –
Investing in a high-quality baseball glove is one of the most essential decisions a baseball or softball player can make about their game. FREE 1 Hour Coaching Clinic with MLB Hitting CoachWatch Clinic in conjunction with the MLB Hitting CoachWatch Clinic Now It may make a significant difference in your overall performance if you select the proper glove for your position and playing style. While no one glove can transform you into a great defender, selecting one that fits properly and feels comfortable may help you gain more confidence on the field and produce plays that are more clean and consistent in their execution.
Even if you choose a model that is somewhat below the “elite” level, you should expect to pay between $150 and $250 for a quality leather mitt.
One component of this is ensuring that it is properly broken in.
Unfortunately, there is a lot of disinformation out there about the appropriate and wrong procedures, and if you aren’t cautious, you might end up doing more harm than good.
How to Break in a Baseball or Softball Glove
Greetings and congratulations on your recent purchase! Premium leather gloves are pricey, but they demonstrate that you are dedicated to the game and are prepared to go to the next level. Top models such as the Wilson A-2000 and the Rawlings Heart of the Hideare expensive, but if you take good care of and preserve your new glove, it will be at your side for many seasons to come.
Why Do Baseball Gloves Need to be Broken In?
One of the characteristics that distinguish leather as a valued and flexible material is its long-term resilience. However, unused leather that has just been pulled off the production line is typically as rigid as a rock, and the leather used by baseball glove makers is no exception to this rule. Those of you who have ever attempted to catch a ball with a brand new glove are well aware of the difficulties involved. They’re nearly hard to close, and the ball bounces out as if it had been thrown against a wall of bricks.
The break-in phase might be anywhere from a few days to many weeks, depending on the type of leather used.
How to Break in a Baseball Glove – The Right Way
Nomar Garciaparra, a former Boston Red Sox shortstop, had one rule: no one else’s hand was permitted to be in his glove at any time. Nomar’s rule is one that is commonly observed among great baseball players. Why? Since leather expands and conforms to your hand and motions as you break in a glove, it becomes more comfortable and supportive. When you put on a glove, you want it to feel natural on your hand, as if it were an extension of your arm that you had completely forgotten was even there.
When you use the glove enough times, the glove will organically conform to your hand, creating a bespoke fit and a pocket that is tailored to your specific catching style.
In order to get the best-fitting, best-performing glove possible, you must put it through its paces by actually using it.
It toss, take ground balls, shag fly balls, and anytime you have the opportunity to catch a ball with your hand in a glove, do so. It will take some time, but it will be well worth it in the end.
How to Break in a Baseball Glove Fast
When it comes to breaking in a glove, a mix of warm water and manhandling is the most efficient method. Shigeaki Aso, a glove expert for Wilson Sporting Goods and one of the world’s foremost authorities on the subject, explains the procedure in the video below. What you’ll need is the following:
- A pail of hot water (not boiling)
- A pair of rubber gloves a cup of anything
- A softer surface (such as a cushion or a rug)
- Glove mallet/glove hammer (optional).
However, it’s important to note that, despite Aso’s well-deserved reputation, there is considerable controversy about the effectiveness of his technique in general. Aso is a highly skilled leather craftsman who creates some of the best gloves available anywhere in the world. He’s well aware of what he’s doing. Using water to soften the leather makes it simpler to work with, but if the water is not applied appropriately, it might leave the leather dry and brittle. So, if you decide to go this route, make sure to follow the directions to the letter – and keep in mind that making a mistake might result in damage to your mitt.
- Glove mallet from the Mizuno brand, with a rounded end.
- Using this method, you may loosen up the leather and make it more pliable.
- With the glove still slightly damp, you want to concentrate on applying as much pressure as possible to the region indicated by the yellow arrow in the illustration below.
- It is at this point that the glove mallet is utilized.
- Another fantastic approach to form the pocket from here is to place your hand in the glove and use the mallet to shape the pocket.
Steaming your glove is a simple, quick, and effective method of cleaning. The technique, on the other hand, has the potential to harm the leather’s fibers. It is for this reason that steaming will void Wilson’s one-year glove guarantee.) Using steam on your glove can soften it, but it will also decrease its durability. In addition, players frequently report that steamed leather fails to maintain its form, instead continuing to break in until it becomes almost too soft to handle. So, if you’re looking for a game-ready glove right now, this would be a good alternative.
Expect the glove to last you little longer than a season, at the very most. Allowing Dick’s to steam your glove is the quickest and most convenient option. During the steaming process, there are three processes involved:
- Glove conditioner will be applied by the technician, which will allow the pores on the leather to open up and soften throughout the steaming process. The technician will place the mitt in a glove steamer, which will soften the leather, allowing it to be more pliable. Taking the mitt out of the bag, the technician will begin striking it with a mallet, loosening up the crucial places. It is likely that this process will be repeated several times.
A good supplemental approach to aid in the break-in of your glove is to wrap it around your hand. There are two schools of thought on how to wrap a gift: one believes that a ball should be placed in the pocket and the other believes that it should not. The only one of those suggestions is right; you should always wrap your glove around a ball that is in the pocket. (You may find out more about why this is the case in the section on the mattress approach, which follows.) Wrapping your glove is a simple technique that takes only a few minutes.
- The glove is closed (with a ball in the pocket) by bringing the pinky and thumb together. Make a secure closure for the glove by wrapping it with thread, elastic, rubber bands, or anything else that will keep it in that closed position. Allow it to rest for a couple of days before unwrapping it and repeating the procedure
Wrapping the glove stretches the leather and retains it in place for a longer amount of time, making it simpler to deal with in the future.
Glove Conditioners and Oils
Conditioning and nourishing oils for gloves can be used both during and after the break-in process. The first rule of thumb when it comes to utilizing glove conditioners and oils is to only use items that have been approved by the manufacturer. Don’t apply Vaseline, petroleum jelly, chapstick, or olive oil on your glove since they will harm and/or saturate the leather, according to the manufacturer (leaving it greasy, heavy or dried out). The following are five of the most popular conditioners on the market.
- Nokona Classic Leather Glove Conditioner
- Mizuno Strong Oil Glove Conditioner
- Rawlings Glovolium Glove Treatment
- Wilson Pro Stock Glove Conditioner
- Wilson Pro Stock Mink Oil Paste
- Wilson Pro Stock Mink
It’s important to remember that a little goes a long way with oils and conditioners. For the most part, you’ll only need to apply a thin layer of coating and gently massage it in with a clean cloth. Essentially, the purpose of these items is to keep leather in good condition while also, in certain instances, softening it. Using too much can result in saturation, which can result in the glove becoming ruined. Another thing to consider is that, in most cases, you will not be required (or even desired) to soften your glove’s webbing, which is typically thinner than the glove’s body and should break in quite rapidly on its own.
The Wrong Way to Break in a Baseball Glove
We discussed a few alternative strategies for breaking in your new baseball glove in the section above. It’s time to go through some of the things you should certainly avoid doing (under any circumstances).
Don’t: Microwave or Bake It
Microwaves and ovens are only used for cooking food. Gloves are made of leather, and leather does not include any food ingredients. So let’s avoid using the glove in the microwave or the oven! Some people believe that baking leather in an oven softens it. That may be true at first since heat makes leather more pliable, but it is not always the case. Hot air, on the other hand, has a tendency to be dry — and this is particularly true of the hot air that comes out of an oven.
When you bake a glove, the moisture in the leather is drawn out of the leather. That implies that when the glove cools down, it will be completely dry to touch (and sometimes, brittle). A Wilson A-2000 that had been abandoned in an automobile.
Don’t: Leave Your Glove in the Car
When you leave your car in the sun, it will become quite hot. As a matter of fact, they’re similar to mobile ovens. which has led some individuals to believe that placing an open glove on a hot dashboard could be a better option to microwaving or baking it. However, you’ll receive results that are similar to those displayed above: a glove that has become dried out and cannot be repaired using a glove conditioning solution
Don’t: Use Shaving Cream
Barbasol shaving cream, which may be used as a conditioner, is one of the most commonly recommended methods for breaking in a glove. Lanolin, a natural oil derived from sheep’s wool, was used in the manufacture of shaving cream back in the day. Lanolin, it turns out, is a fairly effective leather conditioner. However, lanolin is no longer found in virtually all shaving products nowadays. Barbasol shaving cream contains a trace quantity of alcohol, but not a significant amount. Every jar of shaving cream contains an inordinate amount of chemicals and artificial substances that were not intended for use on skin or in the treatment of leather.
It’s possible that you’ve already figured out that dryness is the adversary of a properly maintained glove.
Besides that, some of the chemicals contain substances that can actually break down and weaken the fibers of leather, making it less durable.
Don’t: Put Your Glove Under a Mattress
Using the mattress approach, you may achieve a similar result to that of glove wrapping: by pressing the glove into a closed posture, you stretch the leather and make it malleable more rapidly than usual. The outcomes of these two techniques, on the other hand, are vastly different. The use of rubber bands or string to secure your glove helps you gently stretch the leather along the crease, resulting in a glove that folds properly. The mattress approach, on the other hand, will result in a glove that is flattened and like a leather pancake.
Putting your glove beneath the mattress can cause the heal (the firm leather bar at the base of the palm) to become unduly compressed, which is a critical component of what gives a glove its shape.
The converse is true: If you fold the heel, you’ll wind up with a loose mitt that you’ll have to squeeze hard in order to keep the ball from coming out.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the most often asked questions on how to break in baseball gloves, as well as the answers to those queries. What is the best way to break in a baseball glove overnight? Breaking in a baseball glove overnight is not only dangerous, but it may also be detrimental to its leather construction. In principle, submitting a glove to extremely high temperatures (such as an oven) or extremely high pressure (such as being driven over by a car) may soften it in that amount of time. That said, using such procedures will result in a dry, misshapen mitt that performs badly and is not very long lasting.
Is it possible to break in a baseball glove with shaving cream?
Glove conditioners such as triethanolamine (an alcohol), isobutane (an industrial gas product), sodium lauryl sulfate (a detergent), and propane are ineffective since they include chemicals and components that dry out the leather over time.
How to Break in a Baseball Glove Properly – Conclusion
As you begin to work on your new baseball glove, keep in mind that it will take some time for it to become comfortable. People are always eager to provide suggestions for ways to expedite the process, but such suggestions can sometimes cause more harm than good. Grabbing balls with a glove is the most effective approach to break it in quickly. Every alternative approach carries its own set of dangers and drawbacks, and it is best avoided if at all feasible. If you don’t require the glove to be game-ready right away, you can use it during warmups until it is ready to be used in the game.
Using oils and conditioners in moderation while caring for your mitt can keep it looking its best.
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How to Break In a Glove
Step I: Prepare warm water (warm, not boiling) and pour it into the glove’s pocket or palm with the finger side up to ensure that water does not get inside the finger stalls. The water will make it simpler to stretch the leather, which will allow you to more efficiently form the glove as a result. The glove should be placed such that the rear fingers are towards your chest and pointing up. Step II: Grab it between your thumb and pinky and squeeze, jerking each side back and forth a few times.
- Stretch the glove out by grasping it by the tops of the pinky and the thumb of your right hand.
- If you don’t want your finger top lace to be too loose, don’t strain on it too much at this phase.
- Step IV: Before commencing this process, consider the position you play and if you like a deep or shallow pocket for your cards.
- Finish by closing your glove and striking it with your mallet around the W emblem on the thumb side of the glove, moving it back and forth.
- (Optional) Fill the web top with your fingers and squeeze for five to six seconds to form a ‘S’ shape with your fingers.
- This aids in loosening the web top lacing, making it even simpler for your glove to shut exactly the way you want it to be closed.
Step VII:Complete the break-in process by throwing a catch. Would you want to watch the Aso glove break-in procedure in action? Watch the entire video in the player above.
How to Break In a Baseball Glove Overnight – Myths and Truths
It’s possible that this is your very first baseball recollection. A parent or someone you look up to offers you a glove and informs you that this glove is now yours to keep and use. But first and foremost, you must break it in. The term “breaking in” a baseball glove raises certain questions. What exactly are you expected to do? What is the best way to tell whether it has been broken into? And what kind of tools should you utilize to get it started? There are many different kinds of myths out there, and it may be difficult to distinguish between myths and realities.
A mallet is used.
Now, let’s separate the myths from the realities and figure out what it means to properly break in a baseball glove.
Why Break in a Baseball Glove at All?
When it comes to breaking in a baseball glove, two characteristics are important: flexibility and malleability. When you get a new baseball glove, it is likely to feel a little stiff at first. The stiffer it is, the less control you have over the movement of the glove, and vice versa. This impairs your ability to make an effective catching maneuver. Each catch will be more controlled if you can get the glove to adapt to your motions as much as possible throughout the catch. Stiffness is the enemy in this situation.
A baseball glove must be able to accommodate two different things.
Every outfielder also understands the importance of having a glove that fits well in your hand.
Breaking in a Baseball Glove: Myths and Truths
When you purchase a new baseball glove, you will immediately note that it exhibits all of the characteristics of new-baseball-glove syndrome. It’s stiff, it’s not form-fitting, and it’s not even really comfy right away, to put it mildly. Myth: It’s impossible to break in a baseball glove quickly. We’ll give this one a half-point for effort. What they’re really saying is that it’s tough to break in a glove as soon as you would want. However, it is possible. During the two-hour journey to a game, there have been reports of catchers putting forth extra effort to make their mitt more flexible.
The truth is that a glove that has been broken in is more comfortable.
It’s like putting on a new pair of shoes for the first time.
They are even capable of causing blisters.
This is a subject that is up for dispute. Using a glove mallet or glove hammer, softening the glove with hot water, and essentially pounding up the baseball glove until it’s closer to the shape you need, for example, is recommended by a leather craftsman. Glove steaming may be recommended by others.
How Do You Break in a Baseball Glove Overnight?
First and foremost, you can do a great deal to break in a baseball glove without having to play catch a thousand times in a row every day. In fact, it’s probably in your best interests to do so. In an ideal situation, you’ll have several weeks to break in a baseball glove. While wearing your new glove, you may notice something odd about it, such as the way it fits your pinky or the way the pocket of the glove isn’t quite set. You can do a lot to break it in overnight by putting it on and off several times.
One method for breaking in a baseball glove quickly
Make sure you have the proper equipment. It will be required to use a bucket of hot water. A cup, a soft place on which to work, and either a glove mallet or a glove hammer to assist in breaking it in would also be beneficial. Make use of the hot water. Pouring it over the glove (as opposed to soaking it in, which would over-saturate the glove) would just soften the surface, allowing you to deal with it more easily and effectively. Use the “hinge” of the glove to complete your task. The region of the glove where the padding beneath your thumb is located is critical in this situation because if this area is not flexible, it will be difficult to properly wrap the glove around a soccer ball.
This approach does not ensure that you will be able to race with a glove that is properly fitted to you.
Can You Use Shaving Cream to Break In a Baseball Glove?
You can, and in certain cases, it may be better to other ways due to the fact that shaving cream will not do as much damage. In terms of how “broken in” your glove is, though, it won’t have a significant impact. Adding another ingredient here will very certainly improve your chances of getting more of the broken-in effect you desire. Some people, for example, may let their baseball glove sit with a softball inside it to assist decide the form of their baseball glove. Others, however, are not in agreement with this strategy, mostly because they are attempting to catch baseballs, not softballs.
It takes a lot of pressure and a lot of time to achieve the “lived-in” look you want.
Can You Use Vaseline to Break In a Baseball Glove?
Baseball players are fully aware of this since it is one of those “old- timer’s” tactics that they have heard about before. The concept is straightforward: applying Vaseline to the outside of your glove will assist to soften the leather, making it more malleable and accepting to fresh feedback. However, when a manufacturer provides explicit suggestions about what you should use, this becomes an issue. When this occurs, do not apply Vaseline. In certain cases, you may discover that it reacts with the glove in a way that is detrimental to the glove’s long-term longevity.
- Vaseline used shortly before a game, for example, will only slightly soften the glove while making it slippery, according to the manufacturer.
- Keep in mind that Vaseline is considered a “conditioner.” It is not enough to just apply Vaseline to the affected area.
- The term “conditioner” refers to something that helps soften your hair in the same way that a conditioner could.
- However, in order to take use of this pliability, you’ll need to provide the baseball glove with extra feedback (for example, by inserting a baseball inside it).
- It should only be used in little quantities.
- Only when you want to construct the glove later on should you condition the glove.
- Using tactics such as wrapping a ball inside the glove and tying rubber bands around it can help you make the most of the time you don’t have to use it, which will save you money in the long run.
You should also avoid over-applying a conditioner if you’re currently using one. This implies that you should avoid using Vaseline on a regular basis, and if you do, avoid using so much that it totally saturates the glove.
Can You Use Olive Oil to Break In a Baseball Glove?
Olive oil is frequently lumped in with Vaseline as a moisturizer. Some ball players’ “home cures” say that you should break in your glove with olive oil, and that it may also be used as a glove conditioner. You can discover these suggestions on the internet. However, you’ll want to make certain that you follow the instructions provided by the glove maker first. Otherwise, handle olive oil in the same manner as you would Vaseline, as described above. That entails being aware of how to use it properly, using it as a “conditioner” rather than a particular breaking-in product, and otherwise minimizing your exposure to it.
Should You Steam Your Baseball Glove?
Sure! This is an excellent approach for causing the least amount of harm to the glove while simultaneously increasing its flexibility for working with. When it comes to glove steaming, one method is to use the conditioner that was advised by the glove maker. Afterwards, you steam the glove until it is soft enough to work with without tearing it. You’ll next use a glove mallet to break in the glove, making it much simpler to fold over a ball when it comes your way in the future.
What Oil Can I Use to Break In a Baseball Glove?
Glove oil made by the manufacturer is generally the finest option. Manufacturers do not provide these recommendations at random; they do it in order to assist you in avoiding damage to the glove. After all, it is their desire that you will appreciate the goods and that you would submit a nice review for them on Amazon. Sure, you can learn everything about microwaving and utilizing warm water for a variety of at-home cures from books and the internet. Furthermore, several oils, such as olive oil, are frequently advised as conditioners for the hair.
There is no alternative for the passage of time.
How Many Gloves Do MLB Players Go Through in a Year?
It’s difficult to get exact data on this, but on average, major leaguers will receive two gloves each spring training. One of these gloves is the “main,” which means it’s the one that will be broken in over the offseason. The second one serves as a backup in the event that the first one fails. Some major leaguers may go through even more of these, breaking in new gloves using gimmicks like petroleum jelly or a wooden mallet, as well as other minor leaguers. Everyone appears to have their own set of tastes.
It’s important to have trust in your glove when a big-time hit comes off of a baseball bat, or whether you’re practicing outfielding against a hitter on a pitching machine.
A glove that has been properly softened and broken in is vital for every position in baseball, whether you’re playing shortstop or first base.
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Breaking In A Glove
New baseball gloves are frequently stiff and not yet ready to be used in a game setting. Even gloves that have been customized to your playing style, such as custom baseball gloves or custom softball gloves, must be broken in before they can be used on the field for the first time. Many baseball players are curious in how to properly break in a baseball glove, as well as which ways should be avoided. We’ll guide you through best practices, things to bear in mind, things to avoid, and even show you what the experts do in the sections that follow.
When breaking in a new baseball or softball glove, purists adhere to established procedures. They just play catch with their gloves for a number of hours each day for several days or weeks until the glove is properly broken in. Despite the fact that this procedure takes longer, it naturally breaks in your glove better than any other approach, and other methods can speed up the process if you want to rush it. Overall, no matter what you do to break in your glove, the more you can play catch and practice with your mitt, the faster it will break in and become more comfortable.
Baseball Glove Oils and Conditioners
When thinking about how to break in a baseball glove, one of the best places to start is by softly applying a thin coat of glove oil to the palm of the hand. Glove oil keeps the leather “alive,” while also providing a softening condition and helping to protect the leather from gaining weight. Apply about a dime-sized amount of glove oil to a sponge or cloth, and then use the sponge or cloth to apply the oil to the regions of the glove that are currently stiff, as shown in the illustration. Begin with the palm and work your way up to the breakpoint of the glove and finally the web of the glove.
- Make care to massage the glove oil into the leather in an equal fashion.
- Instead, apply the glove oil to the glove’s interior.
- Failure to do so may lead them to begin to fracture and the webbing to become loose, resulting in them being unstable.
- When it comes to deciding what sort of oil to put on your glove, the majority of individuals (even professionals) go for shaving cream.
- It is recommended that you continue to use glove oils and conditioners once your glove has been broken in throughout the season.
However, you must avoid going overboard. Oil should be applied three to four times throughout the season to get the desired results. Then, for the greatest storage results, add oil to your glove one more time before putting it away after the season.
Work the Rigid Parts
When it comes to physically exercising a glove, many players are likewise confused of how to properly break it in properly. One of the most effective methods is to stretch the tight regions and work the leather to aid in the breaking up of the leather. The thumb and pinky are two of the areas that are the most constricting. It is beneficial to draw these sections of the glove towards and away from one another. This aids in the loosening of the binding and leather, allowing the glove to squeeze and catch the ball more effectively.
It is important to vary the amount of manipulation you do with the fingers depending on how tight you wish your finger laces to be.
Soften and Shape the Glove
When it comes to softening and molding a glove, wooden mallets are frequently utilized. Pounding the pocket can aid in the formation of a ball shape, allowing the glove to get more used to gripping a ball. Pluck the glove in various places to loosen the leather and get it ready for play. Make sure you place a ball in the pocket to evaluate the size and form before continuing to soften and shape the leather using a wooden mallet to achieve the best results.
Important Points to Remember
- The use of too much glove conditioner/oil can harm and decrease the life of a fresh glove. During this time, in a warm environment, let the glove oil to seep into the leather. Play catch every day until the glove is ready to be used in a game. Use only a little amount of the glove oil
- You may always add more afterwards. Apply glove oil to your glove towards the conclusion of the season to prevent it from becoming brittle. Maintain the form of your glove by storing it in a dry area with a ball in the pocket. Use of neat’s foot oil, linseed oil, or silicon-type spray is not recommended. It is likely that this will cause leather to dry, stiffen, and grow heavy as a result of the closure of the pores. When it comes to breaking in a glove, there is no shortcut
- Playing catch is still the best method. To avoid overconcentration of the glove oil at the place of application, first apply it to a piece of cloth and then apply to the glove
- The most difficult leather to break in will almost certainly be a high-quality leather. It is not recommended to break in your baseball or softball glove in the oven or microwave. This will cause irreparable harm to your glove. Do not leave your glove outdoors or in your car while you attempt to break it in
- Instead, go to a safe location.
When it comes to learning how to break in a baseball glove, many individuals prefer to consult with the experts. A professional baseball player will occasionally break in a glove in a manner that is contrary to the recommendations of the glove maker. In order to prevent your gloves from wearing out faster, glove manufacturers do not recommend this practice. Due to the fact that professional baseball players typically receive their gloves free of charge, they are less concerned with lifespan and more concerned with a short break-in time.
- First, they soak their glove in a pail of extremely hot water for 1-2 minutes, then remove it from the water.
- Infielders often have one baseball in their pocket, whereas outfielders typically have two baseballs in their pocket.
- Following that, they will place their glove in a dryer to dry it while the baseball(s) are still in their pocket.
- After that, they will untie the glove and work in shaving cream containing lanolin, or glove oil, into the glove.
- In order to utilize glove oil, apply it to a sponge or a cloth first, then use the sponge or cloth to apply the oil to the portions of the glove that are currently stiff.
- Then, using the glove oil, apply it to all other sections of the glove, including the whole inside, to help moisturize and preserve it.
- It is now time to begin pummeling the glove with a baseball bat.
Breakpoints should be pummeled in order to make the glove loosen up even more. This will expedite the process, but you will still need to play a lot of catch and use the glove in order to have it completely broken in. Keep in mind that using this approach will reduce the lifespan of your glove.
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How to Break in a Baseball Glove: Step-by-Step Guide
The truth that gloves need to be broken in before they can function to their full capacity can be attested to by anyone who has played baseball for more than a year or two. When it comes to breaking in and softening your glove, there are a variety of options available. Some of these approaches can be used alone, while others can be used in combination with others. Continue reading to learn about the many techniques for breaking in your glove, as well as the various methods for lubricating gloves.
- Getting Catcher’s Mitts and First Base Gloves Used to Each Other
Breaking in Fielding Gloves (Baseball or Softball)
You’ll probably realize right away that your fielding glove is rigid and lacks the pocket necessary to collect fly balls and ground balls with ease once you’ve determined your suitable size and style, as well as after you’ve purchased your fielding glove. Forming a pocket in your glove is an important part of breaking in your glove. Forming a pocket may be accomplished in a variety of ways, and the most effective strategy is totally dependent on player choice. There are some gamers who swear by the microwave (although we do not encourage it), while others feel there are better ways to prepare the food.
Here are a few examples:
Tried and True or Traditional Method
If you’re a purist, this will almost certainly be the way you like to use to break in your glove. Simply get a group of buddies and engage in a game of catch. In practice, the more times you squeeze the glove around a ball, the more likely it is that the glove will be fully broken in and ready to use throughout the season. While this procedure is, without a doubt, the most time-consuming, it is also the most effective and most recommended one available. When compared to alternative ways that some players may choose to employ, it significantly lowers the possibility of harming your glove.
Glove steaming is a tried and true approach that has been proven to be effective. This is typically regarded as the second-best approach, after playing catch, for catching a ball. Steaming the glove helps to relax the leather and seams, allowing it to be more game-ready before use.
The glove steaming process typically involves the following steps:
- Glove conditioner should be applied to the glove to assist in opening the pores in the leather. Steam the glove until it reaches around 150 degrees. Using a glove mallet, break in the glove’s opening
If you happen to be in the vicinity of a MonkeySports shop, you may stop by and get your glove steamed by one of our knowledgeable staff members.
Manhandling a Glove
This strategy is effective for getting rid of some hostility. All you’re doing here is pressing the glove’s pocket to soften the leather and shape the pocket’s shape. This will require you to either purchase a glove mallet (such as the one depicted below) or make your own mallet out of an old baseball to accomplish. We recommend that you get a genuine glove mallet, which is designed to be used with baseball or softball gloves.
Here’s what you need to do:
- Put the glove on in the same way as you would typically do
- Make use of your throwing hand to hold the mallet and strike the glove’s pocket on a consistent basis. Take the glove off, place it palm side down on the floor, and strike the rear of the glove
- This will help to break in the glove even more.
Other methods may instruct you to wet the leather and lay it out in the sun, but we recommend that you avoid using water and sunlight in this process and instead follow the steps outlined above.
The methods described above may all be utilized to break in your baseball fielding glove. The same tactics will apply if you’re wondering how to break in a softball glove; just be sure to use a softball instead of a baseball to guarantee that your pocket ends up being sufficiently sized.
Additional Tips for Breaking in Your Baseball or Softball Glove
When looking at how to break in your baseball glove, you may find yourself down a trail of false information. There are several beliefs, the most of which are incorrect, concerning how to break in your baseball glove quickly. The fact is that the most effective method of breaking in your glove simply requires time and effort. Here are a few additional pointers to keep in mind when breaking in your glove.
Using Baseball Glove Oils and Conditioners
Even though they are not strictly a break-in procedure, glove oils and conditioners are materials that may be used to soften leather baseball and softball gloves without the need of other methods. If you’re thinking of breaking in your glove with oils and conditioners, the first thing you should know is that items like Vaseline, petroleum jelly, extra-virgin olive oil, mink oil, and linseed oil are never recommended. If you intend to use oils or conditioners on your gloves, you should stick to the items that your glove manufacturer recommends using.
Some conditioners are created particularly for leather and are only available through specialized firms.
Apply a thin layer of paint to the glove and massage it in.
How to oil your baseball glove:
- Use only the oils and conditioners indicated by the manufacturer. Don’t overdo it with the oils. Remember that a little goes a long way
- Avoid using items that are not recommended for use with leather or that are known to dry out fabrics.
Best Baseball Glove Oils and Conditioners
Following up on our earlier discussion, we only advocate utilizing oils and conditioners that have been authorized by the manufacturer. Specific varieties of leather must be handled in a specific way, or they will become damaged if not treated properly. Here are some of the top glove oils and conditioners to choose from: We have oils and conditioners available for purchase in theGlove Accessoriessection of our online store if you wish to give them a try.
Glove Wraps and What They Do
The process of breaking in your glove does not come to a stop after that. While the procedures outlined above assisted you in forming a pocket in your glove, you are not yet finished. You’ll still need to wrap your glove, so be patient. Learning how to wrap a baseball glove is a simple process.
Final steps that will fully prepare your glove for baseball and softball action:
- Fold your glove in half to protect your hands. The pocket is formed at the point where you see the crease beginning to develop. To begin, fold the glove in half starting at the point where your pinky sits
- Continually fold the pinky side of the glove inwards toward itself. Once the glove has been folded in on itself, use a glove wrap, an old set of glove laces, or a pair of shoe laces to secure the glove in place and maintain the folded form. If at all feasible, you should utilize a glove cover that has been designed expressly for this purpose. You can also choose to wrap your glove around a baseball or softball that is placed in its pocket. The use of a softball will result in a larger pocket, which is necessary for people who play slowpitch or fastpitch softball, respectively.
What NOT to do When Breaking in Your Glove
As you read popular baseball or softball forums and articles on various websites, you may come across some fairly unconventional techniques of improving your game. Although many people believe that these break-in procedures are a quick way to soften up a glove, in the long term, they may actually reduce the life of your glove. Some of these strategies may even result in the voiding of the glove’s manufacturer warranty, which is included with the purchase. Here are some of the “tips” that you should avoid at all costs.
This is one of the most popular methods of breaking in a glove, although it has the potential to cause irreversible harm. It is possible that using a microwave or an oven can dry up the leather and make the laces brittle, resulting in them breaking. The use of microwaves and baking gloves in the oven is extremely risky, and should not be done. It has the potential to start a fire if left untreated. If your glove has any metal elements, the danger of injury is enhanced.
If you don’t intend to eat your glove for dinner, avoid using the microwave and the oven to prepare it. As an example, consider what happens if you bake your glove in the oven or microwave – both gloves were the same size before they were baked in the oven:
Inside the Car
Similarly to the microwave approach, keeping your glove in a hot car can cause the leather to dry up, causing the laces to become brittle and snapping off (however the chances of your car catching on fire are far less than burning down your kitchen). Keep your hands on the steering wheel at 10 and 2, but leave the gloves at home.
Breaking in Catcher’s Mitts and First Base Gloves
The procedure by which you should break in your catcher’s or first baseman’s glove is quite similar to the process by which you would break in your fielding glove. In particular, catchers and first basemen will find that merely using the glove will be the most effective way. a great deal! Running catch and bullpen sessions will get the task done the most efficiently, albeit not necessarily the quickest way to get it done. Listed below are a few suggestions to bear in mind:
- Make extensive use of your glove
- Keep a ball wrapped in your glove at all times. Use only oils and conditioners that have been recommended by the manufacturer. Always avoid putting strange things on your glove. Don’t ever put a glove in the microwave or the oven. Never forget to take your glove out of your car.
Good luck with your new glove, and remember to follow the instructions in our baseball glove care guide to maintain your glove in peak condition! That’s all there is to it! Remember to visit our online store for a broad selection ofbaseball and softball gloves with which you can put your newly acquired break in abilities to the test, as well as all of our other informative how-to tips.
How To Break In A New Glove
Enjoy your new baseball glove, and remember to follow our baseball glove maintenance tips to maintain it in great condition! That’s it! You’re finished. Remember to visit our online shop for a broad selection ofbaseball and softball gloves with which you can put your newfound break in abilities to the test, as well as all of our other helpful how-to tips.
How to Break in a Kid’s Baseball Glove the Right Way
The process of breaking in a new glove is one of baseball’s most valued customs and traditions. Even today, when composite technologies make professional baseball gloves lighter and more flexible than ever before, the basis of a goodball glove is thick, stiff leather — leather that must be abused and cared for in order to mold into the proper fit for the player’s hand. Everybody has their own method of breaking in a glove — some people use balls and elastic bands, while others simply back over it with a truck — but the experts have it down to a science when it comes to it.
Pea learnt about glove maintenance from Shigeaki Aso, the glove designer for Wilson Baseball, who is considered to be a real master of the craft.
Don’t Go Pro Too Soon
According to Pea, one of the most common mistakes parents do is attempting to put a professional glove on their son’s hand too soon. Professional-grade gloves are designed for adults and are huge and heavy, which might interfere with a child’s ability to play the game effectively.
According to Pea, “the one thing I would advise fathers to do is to relax with the semi-pro or pro gloves.” In the end, it isn’t really about the leather, but more about the mechanics. It’s like your arm is an extension of the glove.”
Start With a Ball And a Mattress
Although there is nothing you can do to break in a tee-ball or training glove, it isn’t necessary to do so in most cases. Due to the fact that leather is far too heavy for a tiny child, the first glove a toddler learns to catch with will most likely be made of plastic or some other type of synthetic material. Those gloves nearly always arrive with a broken-in feel to them. Pea, on the other hand, believes there is anything you can do to assist. Try to give the pocket of a synthetic glove some form by stuffing a ball inside it, securing the pocket with rubber bands, and placing the glove under the child’s (or your) mattress for a day or two.
Follow This Four-Step Process
A player is generally ready for a leather or largely leather glove by the time he or she is nine years old. So the Pea/Aso procedure is employed in this situation. Here’s everything you’ll need to get started:
- An ice-cold glass of heated (but not boiling) water Consider the temperature at which you clean your dishes — heated, but not too hot to touch — as an example. In order to pour the water, a measuring cup is required. A mallet such is a glove, a baseball bat, or a wooden kitchen mallet (such as you would use to pound garlic)
- A clean, dry towel
The procedure is rather straightforward. Put the glove on your hand and stream warm water down your hand’s palm until it runs clear. Pour the water back into the bucket. Keep the water from getting overly saturated; instead, allow the heat and moisture to break up the stiffness of the leather. Pour it over the palm first, but make sure to get it all the way down the fingers and throughout the majority of the glove’s surface. Occasionally, according to Pea, this can stain the leather a little, but that’s alright because it’s a glove and it’s going to become dirty anyhow.
That should give you a better sense of the contour of the glove and assist you in breaking the stiffness of the glove a little.
Third, pound the glove with a baseball bat or mallet until it is completely broken.
According to Pea, you should concentrate on creating a pocket where you’ll catch the ball by slamming the glove in that exact location of the glove.
The moment the new glove begins to feel like the old glove, according to Pea, is when the new glove becomes comfortable.
After that, pound that place.
Throughout this process, you should continue slipping the glove on and off your child’s hand, allowing them to experience how the glove is breaking in and getting it to fit properly for their fingers.
But, as Pea points out, you are not required to do so. The majority of the time, the following step is just to play catch. Oops! Please try your search again. Thank you for signing up for our newsletter!