Archive for the ‘Baseball tips’ Category

How To Break In A New Baseball Glove

Thursday, May 23rd, 2013

All baseball gloves and softball gloves need to be “broken in” before use in order to provide a proper fit and to play a better game. Many companies use industrial machines to simulate the natural breaking in process. At Vinci, we find that this method often results in “floppy”, ill-fitting gloves with significantly shorter product lives. The individual nature of a player’s hand size and shape, catching style and glove preference lends itself better to a more customized break in process. The steps below will provide you with some basic tips on how to quickly and effectively incorporate your new Vinci glove into your game.

The two basic goals of breaking in a glove are softening the leather and forming the pocket.

Baseball Glove Break In Kit
1) To properly soften the leather, use exclusive Vinci Glove Conditioner with every new glove.** Using latex gloves, apply conditioner to all leather areas of glove including the pocket, laces, and rear. Too much conditioner can actually shorten the life of your glove by speeding up deterioration, so a good rule of thumb is to never apply more than a pea sized amount at a time. Usually 3 – 5 pea sized applications will
sufficiently treat each side of a new glove.

2) Let your glove sit for 24 hours allowing conditioner to fully absorb into leather. Wipe off any excess using a clean, dry cloth. Do not apply more conditioner for at least 2 weeks.

3) Move the heel of the glove firmly back and forth in a “shoe shining” motion. Do the same with the fingers and where the bottom of the web meets the glove. This movement will help to loosen the fibers of the leather and interior linings.
Besides playing catch there are many ways to form a pocket into your baseball glove.

4) Get a baseball or softball depending on your needs for the glove (some players prefer using a hollow plastic ball like the one pictured in the Vinci Break In Kit). Place the ball firmly into the pocket area of the glove.

5) Using 2 Vinci Glove Bands (string, elastic bands, belts, or bungees will work as well), wrap the outside of the glove in an “X” pattern, closing the ball firmly into the pocket. Allow the glove to sit overnight.

6) Remove the bands and toss a ball firmly into the pocket area 50 – 100 times.* Taking time to press and twist the ball into the leather.

7) Repeat steps 3 through 6 until your glove is sufficiently broken in.

You may also use a glove mallet like the one included in the Vinci Glove Break In Kit to hammer into the pocket. The tapered handle of the mallet can be used to size the finger holes of the glove if they feel too tight on your hands. Place the tapered end of the mallet into the fingers of glove and rotate slowly to expand the size of the openings.

Difference between Baseball and Softball Gloves

Monday, November 7th, 2011

What is the difference between baseball, fast pitch softball and adult softball gloves?

Gloves different from glove maker to glove maker, line to line, and even glove to glove. But what really is the difference between a baseball glove, a fast pitch glove and an adult slow pitch softball glove?

First, we need to look at what size of gloves each of the sports are wearing. Baseball players tend to use sizes from 10″ up to 12.75″.  Fast pitch softball players tend to use 11.5″ up to 13″. Adult slow pitch softball players tend to use glove that range from 11.5″ up to 15″.  As you can see, many of these sizes overlap, 11.5″ to 12.75″. Most manufacturers design these gloves towards the baseball market more-so than the other 2 markets.

Second aspect we will look at is the design of the glove itself based on the size of the ball being used. Baseball uses a 9″ ball; fast pitch and slow pitch softball uses either an 11″ or 12″ ball. With these differences in ball sizes, the pockets of the gloves need to be redesigned to catch the ball. When the pocket is redesigned, the rest of the glove changes. With baseball using a 9″ ball, the pocket is typically smaller and longer. Softball glove pockets typically are wider and deeper than baseball gloves. When the pockets get deeper, the height of the glove is shorter, even in the same size gloves. So, a baseball glove in 12.75″ will be taller than a softball specific glove in 12.75″ because the softball pocket is deeper bringing the profile of the glove down. However, many manufacturers tend to “add length” to their baseball gloves to make them softball gloves. They keep the pocket of the baseball glove and add the length making a balanced baseball glove into a heavy feeling softball glove.

Third aspect is how big the players’ hands are. Fast pitch gloves are geared towards female fast pitch softball players. Typically, females have smaller hands than males(not is all cases). So, the manufacturers design the fast pitch gloves with smaller hand openings and/or smaller finger stalls. Baseball and adult slow pitch softball gloves, have larger hand openings and/or finger stalls than their fast pitch counter parts.  However, not all manufacturers change their hand opening or finger stalls between the gloves. Some higher end manufacturers have slightly smaller finger stalls on all gloves that will form and mold to the players hand, whether small or big.

Fourth is how the players like to wear their gloves. Most softball(fast pitch and adult slow pitch alike) players like to have the glove clamped to their hands as tight as they can go. So, manufacturers combat this by putting velcro on the glove for the widest degree of adjustability. Baseball players tend to feel more comfortable with a little movement in the glove, so the velcro isn’t needed and they have standard backs.

Fifth is the quality of gloves offered. Baseball gloves range from $50 and up to $600. Typical fast pitch and slow pitch softball gloves range from $50 to $200 and some manufacturers offer quality gloves the $200 mark. However, most manufacturers do not offer a softball specific glove above $120, pushing softball players into baseball gloves with smaller pockets. Vincipro does make high end softball gloves for the serious softball player.

In short, baseball gloves tend to have a more shallow pocket and a taller profile than softball gloves. Softball gloves typically have a deeper, rounder pocket and shorter profile in a same sized ball glove. Fast pitch players typically like to have velcro adjustment straps on their gloves.

Vinci offers both high end baseball and softball gloves.

Guest Blog by Mark Jones

What Is The Best Baseball Glove For Kids?

Monday, October 17th, 2011

Purchasing your child their first baseball glove is an exciting venture. It also can be challenging with all the different types of gloves available. Hopefully, this will give you some insight into what to look for when getting ready to purchase that youth glove.

There are 2 common theories about what size of glove their players should wear that I have heard little league coaches discuss.
  1. First theory is to buy a smaller sized glove (9.5″-10.5″) for your child. A smaller glove will allow your child to control the glove easier to where it needs to be.  This aids in developing the correct fundamentals now and to build confidence later.
  2. Second theory (the less common of the 2) is to buy a larger glove(11″-12″) for your child. This larger glove will allow your child to flag down the balls and build confidence to enjoy the game, then build fundamentals off of confidence.
  3. Personally, I teach to use a smaller glove and develop the skills now. If the player is starting from square 1 and is needing to learn the basics, it is easier to teach them the correct skill set and tweak them as they grow vs allowing them to develop bad habits with a larger glove and have a coach change everything that they have learned down the road.
Glove Material
When shopping for a youth glove, there are many different types of materials used for gloves. 2 common materials are real leather and synthetic leather. Buy your child a real leather glove and stay away from the synthetic leather glove. The real leather glove will take a bit to break in, but it can be broken in the way you or your child wants to break them in. The [real leather] gloves will feel better and also perform better. The synthetic leather gloves are shaped to look like they have a good design, but they are designed to stay that way and are tough to close. The synthetic leather has a tendency to be slick and have balls slide out of the glove. Synthetic leather gloves will be cheaper than most real leather gloves, but the cost is well worth it in the end.
In a later blogs, I will be discussing what glove is best for infield, outfield and pitcher for the advancing player.
A very good option for a real leather youth glove is the gloves made by Vinci. They are $49.95. These gloves are designed from adult models in smaller sizes to start the player out right. The Vinci Youth Gloves can be found here: Vinci Youth Gloves
Guest Blog by Mark Jones

Caring For Your Baseball Glove

Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

Care for baseball gloves is often overlooked during the season and the off-season. Many players throw their gloves into their bags and walk away. To get the most out of your glove, one must take care of it in season and in the off-season.

Here are a few tips for caring for your glove:

  • Keep it clean. Cleaning a glove periodically, not only looks better, but keeps the pores of the leather clear.
  • Condition the glove with baseball glove conditioner. This keeps the glove leather hydrated and supple. After all, a glove’s leather was a living being at one time. It’s skin. While conditioning the glove, think less is more. It doesn’t need much.
  • Store a ball in it. Whether it is in season or off season, store a ball in the pocket to keep the shape of the glove’s pocket.
  • Store the glove in room temperature. Extreme heat will cause the glove to dry out and become hard. Extreme cold will cause the glove to become hard and not pliable until it warms up. Keeping a baseball glove at a constant room temperature when it is not in use will keep it from deteriorating as quickly.
  • Keep the laces tightened. Tighter laces keep the glove formed. Loose laces are more susceptible to breakage and put unneeded tension on other parts of the glove, speeding the break down of your glove. Quicker breakdown of the glove will result in the glove getting floppy and needing to be replaced sooner.
  • Replace any frayed or broken laces. Frayed laces will break soon. Broken laces transfer the tension to other parts of the glove, usually the other laces. Added tension to these laces cause them to stretch and break quicker.

If you follow these tips, they will help maintain the longevity of your glove and aid in helping you Make The Play!

Guest Blog by Mark Jones

Specially designed for breaking in baseball gloves and softball gloves. The Vinci Glove Break in Kit includes wooden mallet, glove conditioner, rubber bands and plastic ball. Made for players of any level!