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We have used hundreds of gloves in the past decade. Good ones, bad ones, expensive ones, cheap ones. But one thing we never did was make an in-depth review for each glove and post it online. That changes now.
Over the next few months, we will be publishing more reviews of gloves we’ve used. Some will be from notes we have from years ago, some will be from gloves straight out of a box.
Either way, you can be sure that each glove we review will be thoroughly tested for many different criteria. We hope they are informative and help you find your next glove, but we know each review will be rigorous and accurate.
Here is our list of reviews currently posted on the site and other ones coming soon. We will adding more and more as time goes on, with the hope of trying every glove series on the market (and even some lesser known ones):
Mizuno is like a little brother to Rawlings and Wilson, equally good in many ways but just falls short in popularity to the big two companies. They have quite a bit of market share, but they don’t jump to most people’s mind when you ask them their favorite baseball glove brand.
I’ve used and abused Mizuno gloves in the past, but now I am doing a full-fledged break-in of a Mizuno Pro Select GPS1-600R (11.75″) to determine if and how much people are sleeping on Mizuno gloves. The Pro Select is a good starting point because it’s a mid tier glove and within the price range of many higher level ball players.
Here is our initial impression of the glove. I plan to update it frequently as I get further into the break-in, start taking ground balls, and eventually using it in competitive play.
About the Mizuno Pro Select
Just a quick introduction to what this glove is. Our model is a GPS1-600R, an 11.75″ model with a cross web. It is built with Steerhide leather and features a beautiful darkish tan look. We paid $265 (retail price) for it and will have pictures posted within this article within the next few days.
What I Like
The glove looks, feels, and smells amazing out of the box. While this can be said about many new gloves, the clean all-brown look is just amazing.
The leather, a Steerhide, is super smooth yet a bit rugged. In an age where companies are trying to continually create a smoother leader, this is a good balance that maintains the feel you want from a Steerhide glove.
The pattern feels pretty unique. It’s very Japanese-esque, as expected, with a flat finger design and thumb-to-middle finger break. We’ll see how it breaks in over time, but it definitely feels different from many other mitts.
The finger stalls and wrist feel a bit tighter than a normal glove. They’re not as small as, say, Wilson’s Pedroia Fit, but you can feel both are a bit tighter than many “regular fit” gloves. Players with regular-sized or small hands will be 100% fine, but bigger hands are going to feel quite snug.
The wool wrist padding feels oh-so-good, and the hand liner is smooth as well. I wouldn’t say the liner is soft, per se, but it has a good balance of feel and durability that comes with a Steerhide palm liner (Mizuno calls it ‘Steersoft’ – a pretty good description).
The pop of the pocket. With stiffness comes a lot of sound, and the sound of this pocket is beautiful. We’ll see if it holds, but early rounds of catch show a catching sound that is music to the ears.
What I Don’t Like
I noticed the lacing was pretty bad. A lot of reviews say it is actually quite bad, and I can confirm that the laces throughout the entirety of the glove are thin, feel stiff but weak, and lack the suppleness that many gloves in its class have.
The stiffness of the glove is insane. In an era where companies are releasing more game-ready gloves, this glove is a brick. You might like this, but I feel a bit more work in the factory would have been handy.
The wool wrist padding may feel good, but there’s a reason most companies are moving away from it. It will feel amazing for a while, but over time it will flatten and even start to stink a bit if we really start sweating in it.
The Pro Select series is not a Wilson or Rawlings. And that’s a good thing. Many companies are copying each other in different ways, but this glove feels unique in many ways. From the pattern, to the design, to almost every part of the glove, it feels unique.
And as we play around more with this glove, we’ll see if this uniqueness puts it over Wilson and Rawlings gloves that are both more popular and more expensive.
44 Pro Gloves is a company offering custom made gloves at an attractive price – $199 for the Signature Series. These gloves are made from Kip Leather, a lightweight leather typically considered the best offered on a mitt.
This review will reveal the good, the bad, and a final verdict on whether we recommend you buy a 44 Pro Gloves Signature Series mitt:
Customization Options: Tons of web styles, colors, sizes, and other options are all at your finger tips when building a mitt on their customizer. You will spend hours picking and choosing different options, but at the end of the day, the only limit is your imagination.
Leather quality: It doesn’t have the leathery feel of the Pro Preferred model (another Kip leather mitt), but the leather is nonetheless very nice. It’s smooth and surprisingly durable for its price, though it doesn’t quite match up to the A2000/A2K or HOH/Pro Preferred level.
Lace Quality: This is where I was the most surprised. Gloves at this price point, and even at higher prices, typically struggle with lacing, but the Signature Series has supple lacing that doesn’t stretch too much past the initial break-in period.
Dark Color Quality: The Black leather on our mitt was pretty much flawless after years of play. There was no discoloration and the majority of this part of the leather still looked like it was brand new.
Customer Service: 44 Pro’s customer service is ridiculously good. They give you updates on your glove, are more than willing to answer questions quickly via email, and put a lot of resources into place to ensure you’re happy. Out of all the glove companies, 44 was the most pleasant to work with.
Other Color Quality: Our mitt has a bit of red on it (we were too tempted by the many options), and the color faded quickly. Even in spots that don’t get used a ton. Although this is commonplace for most custom gloves, it just reminds us that bright and flashy colors aren’t always a good move.
Pattern: While 44 Pro has updated the patterns they offer, out mitt had quite the odd pattern. The natural squeeze was a bit goofy, and the double-laced palm made for an interesting break-in. They have improved this, however, so this point may be less relevant now.
Stiffness out-of-the-box: I personally love stiff gloves that require some break-in, but this glove was too much. If I were to assign a percentage to it, I would have to say around 10-15%. If you’r short on time or a bit impatient, you may end up messing up the break-in.
Palm Liner: The palm liner is super smooth out of the box and feels pretty nice, but it’s very slippery if you sweat at all. 44 Pro has also upgraded this recently, so perhaps we’ll have to give it another shot.
It’s tough to beat a fully custom glove for $200. And with the traditionally dominant models becoming more and more expensive each year, any quality glove at this price point is a bargain.
While there are certainly some areas their gloves need to improve, 44 Pro has consistently worked to remedy these issues. Even moreso than companies with much more R&D money.
If you’re in the market for a custom glove and simply do not want to spend anywhere from $350-$550 for customs from other companies, 44 is a more-than-excellent alternative that you will enjoy for many baseball seasons.
Accessories are hardly necessary for keeping your glove in top-notch shape. However, several of them can certainly make this ongoing process a lot easier. In this post we break down the best baseball glove accessories to make protecting your glove’s shape simple and easy.
Mitt Spit Glove Cleaner and Conditioner: This US-made product is the best conditioner on the market. It both smells good and gives your glove a clean, smooth feel after application. Pick it up here.
Extra baseball or softball: When you are not using your glove, it is helpful to leave a baseball (infield glove) or softball (outfield glove) in the pocket. This helps you maintain the shape of it in a cost-effective manner.
Lacing kit: Laces sometimes snap, leaving you in a tough situation to either send your glove away or fix the lacing yourself. With a lacing kit and a few Youtube videos, you can fix the lacing yourself both effectively and affordably. Here’s our favorite lacing kit, and Wilson sells a full-service one as well.
Glove Mallet: A wooden mallet is a good way to mimic catching a baseball when breaking in your glove. While not necessary, using a mallet is an affordable and effective way to break-in your glove quicker. Buy one here.
Webgem Glove Care System: The Webgem is a carrying case for your glove that keeps it protected and maintains it shape. They have models for fielders and catchers. Albeit pricey, they are a good way to maintain the desired shape of your glove. Get one here.
Accessories we don’t recommend:
Most glove conditioners: There’s a million types of leather conditioners for sale, but most are either a) not for baseball gloves, or b) contain chemicals that are questionable for your mitt. We recommend sticking with what we listed above.
Glove Wrap: Albeit cheap, most glove wraps are largely ineffective. They break-in and shape a glove unnaturally, and we recommend either carrying your glove or putting a baseball in the pocket if you must store it somewhere enclosed.
Sting Pads: Most sting pads are uncomfortable and provide limited benefit. If your index finger is stinging too much, we recommend going index finger-out grip or figuring out why the padding in your palm is failing.
Taking simple steps to care for your glove is the easiest way to ensure its longevity for many seasons. However, most players don’t know how to take care of their glove off the field, and in this post we break down the simple methods to keep your glove in tip-top shape:
Keep your gloveout of extreme weather: You can’t always control this when on the diamond, but when you’re not using the glove, you should not let it sit in the rain, in a hot car, in the sun, or anywhere else where the climate may affect or damage the leather.
Store it correctly: Most players throw their glove in their bag. Instead, you should aim to either carry your glove or place it in a bag with a baseball (infield mitt) or softball (outfield mitt) in the pocket. A pricey option is a Webgem glove care kit.
Use Oil on it Infrequently: Glove Oil is an easy way to clean and condition your glove, but too much of it can damage and weigh down the glove. We recommend using Mitt Spit glove conditioner and only using it once every few months.
Wipe off excess sweat/dirt: If you’re on a dusty field or it’s particularly hot out on the field, your glove is going to soak up sweat and dirt. After one of these days, take a dry towel and wipe the excess sweat and dirt from the leather.
Tighten the Laces Frequently: Unless you truly like the loose-lace feel, tightening the laces on your glove is in your best interest. This protects the leather laces from unnecessary strain that will break it down over time. And when the laces are worn out, relacing them is a great idea.
Use It Frequently: The best way to keep your glove’s shape is to use it. While this isn’t a problem during the season, your glove may sit dormant over the winter. By using it regularly, even a few days per week in the offseason, you’ll allow it to stay ready for the next season.
Breaking in a glove can be a time-consuming and difficult process. But it can also be a fun and interesting one if you employ the best methods of doing so. In this post we detail the best methods to break-in your baseball glove in the most time-efficient and effective manner:
Best Method: Playing Catch
Cliche, but breaking your mitt in by playing catch allows your glove to truly break in to how your squeeze your hand. This makes the glove both more comfortable and easier to close over time.
A hack to make this easier is to find a flat concrete or brick wall and throw dimpled baseballs at the wall. They’ll come back at you, replicate the act of having a catch, and help break-in your glove without another person.
This is the most time-consuming method, but it truly is the best method to break-in your glove the most natural way. Plus, there are many other skill-related benefits to having regular catches to break-in your glove.
An OK Method: Hot Water and a Mallet
Wilson’s Aso has recommended this method for years, in which you pour hot water over the pocket of your glove and hit the pocket of your glove with a wooden glove mallet. Here’s a video displaying the process.
This method will break-in your mitt very quickly, but at the expense of slightly damaging the leather of your mitt. Hot water will certainly help loosen the leather, but it harms the long-term durability of it as well.
We only recommend this method for players who need their gloves broken-in quickly or who only use their gloves for a short time. If you are looking to keep your glove in-shape for a longer time, we recommend simply playing catch.
What You Shouldn’t Do
Glove Steaming: A process in which you or someone else heats your mitt in a steamer, oven, or microwave. This breaks the glove in quickly, but it damages the leather of the glove significantly. We wouldn’t recommend in pretty much any circumstance.
Running Over Your Glove with a Car: This flattens the glove, giving it a broken-in feel, but it creates an unnatural squeeze that’s going to be uncomfortable. Never recommended.
Glove Wrap: Wrapping your glove with a rubber band and a baseball in pocket is a decent way to store your glove, but a bad one to break one in. This also creates an unnatural squeeze and honestly doesn’t really break-in your glove all that much.
Spin Control has made its return the Wilson lineup after a long hiatus. After being used in 1990s and 2000s gloves, Wilson finally revamped and improved the technology for the latest series of gloves. Here’s everything you need to know about it:
Spin Control is a technology that uses a dimpled palm and special oiling process to reduce the amount a ball will move in the pocket upon catching the ball.
The Spin Control technology comes in the palm and, usually, the web. These are the areas where the ball typically hits and begins to torpedo in the leather, where either you corral the ball or watch it squeak out.
Why would I need this? Due to its spherical nature, a baseball likes to rotate all kinds of ways in the air or in your pocket. This tech simply reduces the amount of spin that can effect how well you catch the ball.
Does it actually work? We haven’t tried it out yet, but it seems like MLB players have been using it and liking it so far. We’ll have more information on how well it works soon, but for now it seems pretty good.
Is it worth it? Right now, Spin Control mitts aren’t any more expensive than regular A2000 gloves. Although we don’t see it as the latest, greatest feature to get on your glove, if you want to be one of the early adopters of this glove tech, it’s probably worth it.
Right now there are a few gloves that come with this technology, as it roll-out has been calm and measured. These are the models where Spin Control is used:
Wilson A2000 1786 Spin Control: Our favorite middle infield glove that measures at 11.5″ with and shallow pocket and I-web. Get it here.
Wilson A2000 1975 Spin Control: An 11.75″ mitt that is largely an oversized 1786. Good for shortstop and third base. Buy it here.
Wilson A2000 H12 Spin Control: A 12″ glove that is an oversized 1787, with a medium depth pocket and I-web. Good for third basemen and some shortstops. Check it out here.
Wilson A2000 M1D Spin Control: A 33.5″ Catcher’s mitt. Probably the best mitt to have Spin Control, as catcher’s deal with a lot of different stuff behind the dish. Get it here.
Wilson A2000 OT6 Spin Control: A 12.75″ outfield mitt that comes with a trapeze web and elongated feel. Spin Control is probably good for outfielders to avoid weird flyballs popping out of their gloves. Buy it here.
Baseball gloves are getting awfully expensive, with prices pushing $300 on gloves that cost half that a decade ago. In this post we rank the best gloves for the infield on a budget, so you can ball out without spending a ton of cash.
Wilson A1000 1786: An 11.5″ model with some decent materials and a great pattern for the middle infield. At $140, it’s reasonably priced and will last you a couple of seasons. Get it here.
Mizuno MVP Prime11.5″: A really nice model for around $100 (many times a good amount less). Can get through a few seasons and features a really nice shallow pocket and Mizuno’s cross web. Highly recommend for tight budgets. Buy it here.
Rawlings Encore EC1150: An 11.5″ mitt that features an I-web and shallow pocket. Priced at $160, it’s not the cheapest glove, but it is worth the price and almost half the price of the next Rawlings model. Check it out here.
Mizuno Franchise 11.5″: Another Mizuno model, this time priced at $80. Materials don’t feel great, but they will last a few seasons are are the best at the price point. Good pattern for the middle infield as well. Buy it here.
Rawlings R9 11.5″: Another $100 option that features materials about the same as the above model. Decent design and pocket, but feels a bit overpriced for what you would be getting. See it here.
Some Wild Card Options
Snagging a discounted A2000 or Heart of the Hide: Sometimes you can find our favorite higher priced models in the $150-$180 range on eBay or Amazon. You can typically find them in July/August, but deals are largely random. Look for an A2000 1786 or HOH PRO204.
Customized 44 Pro Glove: A fully customized, high quality mitt for $185. Again, may be a bit out of the “budget” category, but you get amazing bang for your buck. We recommend an 11.5″ mitt with an I-web. See them here.
Wilson’s premier A2K series returns for the 2020 and 2021 seasons as one of the best glove series in the world. And once again, Wilson has outdone themselves on the designs and materials on the 2021 Wilson A2K Gloves.
2021 A2K Materials
The 2021 Wilson A2K Gloves feature the best materials Wilson has to offer, including:
Pro Stock Select Leather: a buttery smooth leather that will stay strong for many years.
Double Palm Construction: a double layer of leather in the palm that doubles durability and shock absorption
Superskin (Some Models): Lightweight synthetic material that decreases weight and increases durability
Snakeskin (Some Models): Textured leather that adds a cool look and feel to a mitt.
Put all of these together and you get a glove(s) that is sleek, durable, and will help you perform at the highest level in the field.
2021 Wilson A2K Infield Gloves
Here are the infield models in the 2021 Wilson Glove Line:
2021 Wilson A2K 1786
The 1786 is an 11.5 model with an I-web, shallow pocket, and saddle tan and black colorway. It’s our favorite middle infield model for 2020-2021, and you can pick it up here.
2021 Wilson A2K 1786SS
The 1786SS is the same model as the 1786, but with the synthetic Superskin backing. This makes it lighter weight, helping you turn quicker double plays. Get it here.
2021 Wilson A2K 1787
The 1787 is an 11.75″ mitt with an I-web and medium depth pocket. This glove is perfect for second base, shortstop, or third base, and you can buy it here.
2021 Wilson A2K 1795
The 1795 is a 12″ Third Base Mitt with an H-web and deep, rounded pocket. It’s nicknamed “Blaze” for the red/metallic and gray look, and you can get this Western-themed glove here.
2021 Wilson A2K 1795SS
The 1795SS is the same 12-inch, deep pocket model as above, but with a lighter Superskin shell. Buy it here.
2021 Wilson A2K Outfield Gloves
Here are all the 2021 Wilson A2K Outfield Gloves:
2021 Wilson A2K 1799SS
The 1799SS is a 12.75″ Outfield Mitt with an H-web, deep pocket, and Superskin shell. It is one of our favorite outfield models for 2020-2021, and you can pick it up here.
2021 Wilson A2K JS22
The new JS22 is the Juan Soto game model glove and is a replica of the above 12.75″ 1799 with a different colorway. You can buy it here.
2021 Wilson A2K 1775SS
The 1775SS is a 12.75″ mitt with a single post web and deep pocket. It’s a bit different than the above 1799, which we detail below. You can get the 1775SS here.
Compared to the aforementioned 1799, the 1775 will have a rounder pocket and play bigger, which will help you snag more flyballs in the outfield.
2021 Wilson A2K Pitcher’s Gloves
The Following are the Pitcher’s Gloves in the 2021 Glove Line:
2021 Wilson A2K B2
The B2 is a 12″ Pitcher’s glove that comes with a medium-to-deep pocket and grip-concealing 2-Piece Web. Get it here.
2021 Wilson A2K D33
The D33 is an 11.75″ model with a Closed Pro Lace Web, deep, rounded pocket, and Superskin back.
Compared to the B2, it’s a bit shorter, lightweight, but with a deeper pocket. You can buy it here.
2021 Wilson A2K First Base Gloves
Here are all the 1B Mitts in the 2021 Glove Line:
2021 Wilson A2K JA79
The JA79 is the Jose Abreu game model and a 12.5″ 1B mitt with a Snakeskin back and single post web. It’s Wilson’s biggest 1B glove in the A2K model.
In addition, the mitt comes with a “Spin Control” pocket that reduces the changes of a ball popping out of the pocket. Get it here.
2021 Wilson A2K 2820SS
The 2820SS is a 12.25″ First Base Mitt with a Superskin back and Single Post web. This model comes with a deep pocket and double break palm. You can buy it here.
2021 Wilson A2K Catcher’s Mitts
There’s only one A2K Mitt in the 2021 Glove Line, the M1D:
The M1D is a 33.5″ Catcher’s Mitt with a Half-Moon Web and extended pocket. It’s one of the best catcher’s mitts on the market, and you can get it here.