What softball glove should I buy?
Many times I run into people asking which glove they should buy. Here are a few questions you should ask yourself when you are searching for that next fielding tool.
What position do you play? Softball infielders like smaller gloves than outfielders do. If playing slow pitch and you have never played before, look at a glove around the 13″ range for a good starting point. Put the glove on and see how it feels to you. If you have played before, ask yourself the question below.
What glove do you currently use? What are the pros and cons of this particular glove? Figuring out what you like and dislike about your current glove will start you on a fast track to finding out what you want. Consider rating how you like the size of the glove, the web, the back, the feel of the glove, the padding in the palm, the pocket size, the leather quality, durability, etc.
How many games a year do you play? Players who play 50+ games a year should look toward a higher end glove. Higher end gloves typically are built better with better materials and leather to help with the durability.
What level of softball do you play? Higher levels of play have higher demands on player’s equipment meaning a higher end glove will probably suit a higher level player better than a lower end glove. On the flip side, a lower level player may be better suited for a more inexpensive glove. However, the amount of games played by a lower level player may be better due to the durability aspect.
Price: How much are you willing to spend or can you spend on a new piece of leather? This is pretty self explanatory. If you can only spend X on a glove, you can only spend X on a glove. Gloves range from $50 and on up. As the prices go up, typically so does the quality.
Higher end gloves usually last longer than the bottom of the barrel gloves. If you spend $75 a year on a glove, 3 years down the road, you have invested $225 in gloves and invested time to break them all in while also getting use to them. Consider buying a higher end glove and getting better quality, saving time on breaking in numerous gloves and saving time on getting use to the glove itself. Also, higher end gloves can usually be re laced, where the lower end gloves it’s not worth really worth it.
Also, higher end gloves take more abuse than lower end gloves. Have you ever been caught out in the rain while playing? I know I have. As much as I don’t suggest getting your glove wet, sometimes, you just can’t help it. Higher end gloves usually can bounce back better than lower end gloves. Typically, if a lower end glove gets soaked, it’s done. A higher end glove usually can be saved. I have had better luck with higher end gloves in and after the rain.
But, it all comes down to you as a player and what you feel comfortable with. The above questions are a starting point to guide you to the glove that will be perfect for you.
Guest Blog by Mark Jones