When buying baseball equipment, people typically think to buy a bat, a baseball glove, maybe even a few balls.
You might not even think to buy another glove for batting. After all, batting gloves, strictly speaking, aren’t required in any baseball league.
They might not seem like much, but batting gloves definitely have their benefits! They will protect your hands and even help you swing better.
In this article, I’ll help you go over why you should buy batting gloves in the first place, how to choose batting gloves, and which batting gloves I recommend.
Why Should I Buy Batting Gloves?
Like I mentioned earlier, batting gloves aren’t required in any baseball league, not even professional ones; so why should you buy them? And why do professional baseball players use them?
Well, batting gloves help with three main things: grip, support, and protection.
Batting gloves help you get a firmer grip on your bat. Regardless of what material they’re made out of, the leather or synthetic palm helps generate more friction to improve your grip on the bat.
Batting gloves also reduce the effect of a sweaty palm, absorbing your sweat and allowing you to keep a firm grip.
Batting gloves also support your hands. The padding contours to the shape of your hands, supporting them as you hold and swing the bat.
This prevents your hands from getting sore so you can keep swinging your bat for extended periods of time.
The pads inside batting gloves also protect your hands by reducing stinging or vibration from swinging and hitting a ball.
This also reduces the risk of any blisters or burns that can potentially form from holding onto and swinging a bat.
Aside from these three main benefits, however, most people just buy batting gloves because they like the color or design.
They’re very customizable, and people like to use them to show off a bit of personality.
How Do I Choose A Pair Of Batting Gloves?
There are, of course, several brands selling many different styles of batting gloves.
They come in different designs and different colors. Maybe some of them even have features you didn’t know gloves could have.
It’s all very overwhelming, but the following are a few factors you may want to consider before purchasing a pair.
Batting gloves are typically made using only two materials: leather or synthetic leather.
Real leather gloves are typically made using either sheepskin or goatskin leather. Synthetic leather gloves usually imitate suede and other real leather materials.
Real leather gloves tend to feel more rugged and rustic. They tend to be more rigid and durable than synthetic leather gloves.
Many people also tend to prefer leather gloves because they last longer.
Synthetic leather gloves, on the other hand, tend to be softer, more comfortable, and more flexible. While not as durable as real leather gloves, they do offer better mobility.
There are also some batting gloves that come in a mix of both materials. The palm is made of real leather, while the rest of the glove is made with synthetic leather.
This option offers the rigidity of real leather for the palm while allowing your fingers to remain flexible, with better mobility.
The material mostly affects how the glove feels when you’re wearing them, so this comes down to personal preference.
You might like the classic feel of a leather glove, or you might like the comfortable fit of a synthetic leather glove.
Beyond the actual material used to make the glove, another factor to consider is whether or not you want a smooth or textured palm.
Many brands emboss the palms of their gloves with small holes to give it a texture, while others leave them smooth and plain.
Embossed palms generate even greater friction between your hand and the bat allowing for a tighter grip. Smooth palms, on the other hand, generate less friction.
While you generally want to have a tighter grip on your bat, many players already have grips on their bats to help with that.
Some players choose to go with the plain, smooth palms because they’re more comfortable and because the extra texture on embossed gloves provides too much friction.
Wrist style refers to how the gloves fit and how they stay fastened to your hands. There are several styles available, velcro straps, compression garters, or even buckles.
Velcro straps are the most common option and are very easy to use and wear. Velcro straps allow you to adjust the tightness and fit of a glove beyond the actual size of the glove.
They are very easily adjustable, offering you a gradient of different tightness levels, so you can always adjust how tight you want them to be.
Compression garters are another common option seen in batting gloves. These can vary wildly in how they’re made.
For the most part, these gloves contour around the size of your wrist to ensure a comfortable fit. The compression on these gloves may also affect how much support your gloves give you.
Buckles are the least common wrist style, as they can be very difficult to put on, especially by yourself. They also offer less flexibility than velcro straps.
However, some may choose the buckles solely for aesthetic purposes.
Fit And Feel
Batting gloves, like all gloves, come in a variety of sizes that can affect the fit of the glove.
This can vary from brand to brand, but generally, batting gloves are sized differently for men, women, and kids. Sizes then vary from small (S) to extra large (XL) or even extra extra large (XXL).
Brands will often have sizing charts to help you choose a size.
Generally, in order to figure out your size, you measure the distance between the base of your palm and the tip of your middle finger.
You want to choose a size that’s snug, not too tight, and not too loose. This ensures that your glove won’t slide off or be too constrictive.
Even if you do choose a size that’s right based on the length of your hand, your batting gloves may still have the wrong feel.
The padding inside might affect how tight it feels on certain parts of the glove. Maybe the fingers are too long and loose.
Make sure to choose a pair of batting gloves that feel well-contoured to the shape of your hand.
You may also find that the fit and feel of some gloves will improve over time. Batting gloves made out of leather—synthetic or otherwise—need to be broken in.
You should also take this into consideration when buying a pair since your batting gloves may feel different after some time wearing them.
I’ve already mentioned the most common features that batting gloves tend to have. But brands are continually innovating and offering more specialized features.
Some brands offer unique features like pre-curved fingers to provide extra support and comfort. There are also batting gloves specifically designed for cold weather.
If you have any hand issues you should seek the advice of a physiotherapist or a sports scientist to help you find a glove with the right features for your condition.
The Top 5 Best Batting Gloves of 2019
It can be overwhelming, trying to find the right pair of batting gloves, but I’m here to give you a hand.
The following are the top 5 batting gloves I personally recommend for 2019. I’ll go over the design, the material, features and more to help you narrow down your search.
#1 DeMarini Phantom Batting Gloves
DeMarini is known for creating high-quality baseball and softball equipment.
Athletes all over the world have relied on DeMarini for their commitment to excellence and quality.
So, it’s no surprise that they also make batting gloves to go with their wide selection of bats.
The DeMarini Phantom Batting Gloves has a very simple design. The palm itself is white sheepskin leather with a smooth texture.
The back has a two-tone design with a diamond mesh pattern. It comes in a variety of colors including black, navy, orange, purple, royal, and scarlet.
The DeMarini Phantom is true to its name, being a light pair of gloves that feels like they’re barely there.
DeMarini stitched together a single piece leather for the palm and a diamond mesh for the back.
The result is one of the most flexible and breathable pairs of gloves on the market.
The wrist style is a velcro strap with a low profile, hanging just below the wrist. This allows the glove to hold firmly onto your hand without restricting your wrist movement.
It also comes with a neoprene band to reduce friction during your swing and prevent any chafing. This further adds to the high-level of comfort the DeMarini Phantom offers.
The DeMarini Phantom also features finger and heel pads. These minimize the vibration coming off your swing when you hit the ball.
You can swing your bat confidently, knowing your hands are safe.
If you’re looking for a pair of gloves that will give you the support you need, the DeMarini Phantom is the pair for you.
These gloves give you all the support you need and they’re so comfortable that you’ll forget you’re wearing them to begin with.
#2 Nike Huarache Elite Batting Gloves
Moving onto our next pair of gloves, the Nike Huarache Elite Batting Gloves are a great looking pair of gloves with its stabilizing overlay forming a pattern of striking geometric lines.
The chromatic Nike logo is prominently featured on the back. It comes in shades of white, grey, and black as well as in red and blue.
The Nike Huarache provides you with an elite experience by designing an experience for the best control and comfort.
The single-piece sheepskin leather palm is smooth albeit for some perforations on the fingers.
This strikes a balance between a smooth and embossed palm while making the glove more breathable and comfortable.
The same perforations as the fingers appear on the back of the glove. These further make the Nike Huarache a very breathable pair of gloves.
Additionally, along with the stabilizing overlay, the perforations make the glove very flexible despite the leather palm.
The velcro strap wraps tightly around your wrist to give you a good ‘locked-in’ feel.
This minimizes the movement of your wrist, but this also gives your wrist support to prevent it from getting sore.
The neoprene band inside also reduces the risk of chafing.
The Nike Huarache is a great pair of batting gloves for someone ready to hit balls out of the park.
#3 Marucci Pittards Signature Batting Gloves
Marucci is a relatively young company that started in 2004.
They are known for their high-quality handcrafted baseball bats. They have high standards and all of their products have to meet those requirements.
The Marucci Pittards Signature Batting Gloves are no different.
The Marucci Pittards has a relatively simple design, being mostly white with a few accent lines in black, gold, red, or blue.
Their designs are always thoughtful in function, and they have a certain sleek and elegant visual appeal.
Just like other entries on this list, the Marucci Pittards made its batting gloves with a digitally-embossed premium-grade sheepskin leather palm for a more comfortable feel.
The palm also comes with Gripster technology to ensure maximum friction.
Inside the gloves, the Marucci Pittards also has Lycra. The two-way stretch fabric ensures the highest mobility for any wearer.
This combines with the finger break contours for ultimate maneuverability. At the bottom of the glove, the velcro strap keeps the Marucci Pittards secure.
The Neoprene cuff wraps tight around the wrist, keeping everything very comfortable while providing a great deal of support to your wrist.
The Marucci Pittards are the best batting gloves for any player interested in maximizing their grip and control.
No bat will be flying out of your grasp when you’re wearing these gloves.
#4 Franklin Sports Pro Classic Batting Gloves
The Franklin Sports Pro Classic Batting Gloves is the latest in a line of gloves first designed with the help of Hall of Famer, Mike Schmidt.
They have a simple, classic design that’s sure to make you understand why so many professional baseball players swear by these gloves.
The Pro Classic brings together a Pittards digital sheepskin palm and a pro-grade spandex back into an amazing pair of gloves.
It comes in all-white, all-black, red and white, and blue and white.
The Pittards digital sheepskin creates the strongest grip on any baseball glove while maintaining a very soft and maneuverable texture.
The fingers on this piece of leather are also perforated to increase breathability and comfort.
Designed to adjust to your hand’s curvature, the Pro Classic is also equipped with floating thumb technology.
This helps increase the flexibility and adaptability of the glove. With this, you can get smoother swings and more powerful hits.
The pro-grade spandex back of the glove features quad-flex technology that can stretch but also retract to prevent material buildup.
This same spandex is also used for the velcro wrist strap, keeping it breathable, but tight and supportive.
The Pro Classic is definitely a classic for a reason. It is one of the most comfortable, dependable, and reliable pairs of gloves on the market.
#5 Franklin Sports COLDMAX OUTDOORS Batting Gloves
Our last pair of batting gloves also has the most specialized features on the list.
The Franklin Sports Coldmax Outdoors Batting Gloves are specifically designed for use in cold weather and are even good for use outside of playing baseball.
It comes only in one color—all black.
When the weather starts to turn cold, when it’s snowing, or even when it’s raining, your regular pair of baseball gloves just won’t cut it.
When your fingers start to shiver from the cold, the Coldmax Outdoors will keep your hand steady and your grip firm.
The Coldmax Outdoors will keep your hands warm in any weather. It’s water-resistant, windproof, and very well-insulated.
The Coldmax Outdoors also comes with a Pittards digital sheepskin leather palm.
This is the highest quality leather to ensure a strong grip in any weather while staying soft and warm.
If you’re looking for a pair of batting gloves to use in the cold, you need not look any further. The Coldmax Outdoors is just the pair you need.
Which Batting Gloves Should I Buy?
Which Batting Gloves Should I Buy?
Buying batting gloves can be very intimidating.
With all the different pairs available on the market, you can easily get lost looking at how many brands are available and how many styles are under each brand.
It’s very easy to get discouraged and just grab the one you think looks the best.
The important thing to remember is that batting gloves are mainly there to protect your hands.
The additional support or the added grip strength is great, but batting gloves are mainly there to help you swing at your best.
Batting gloves are there to keep you swinging all the way from practice to the championships.
Buying batting gloves ultimately boils down to how they feel on your hands. Make sure that whichever pair you choose to buy, you’re able to swing confidently.
I hope this guide has helped you narrow down your choices and you find the pair that will fit your needs perfectly.
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