There are many baseball gloves available in the market, varying by size and design. But did you know that there are different ones for different players as well? Yes, it is true!
If you have watched a baseball game, either in person or on television, then you may have noticed the wide range of gloves. For example, you will be able to tell that the first baseman’s baseball gloves are not the same as the others. Rest assured, this does not happen for no reason. First base gloves are made to satisfy the unique needs of such players.
In general, they are larger with deeper webbing and conjoined fingers. But, needless to say, there is more information worth knowing about these gloves. To consume the details well, it is best to look at them in conjunction with the typical baseball glove. That being said, check out our article on the topic of first base glove vs regular glove! We will take you through the essentials, including:
- Care & Maintenance
First Base Glove vs. Regular Glove: Design
Unlike other baseball gloves, first base gloves, also referred to as first base mitts in baseball, have a distinct round edge and mitt-like structure. Together, they create a deep funnel form. The general shape of these gloves can be described as an oval bowl.
Another significant characteristic of first base gloves is the lack of separate finger stalls. Instead, there are conjoined fingers. This is arguably the most recognizable detail within the overall appearance of the glove.
Contrary to regular gloves with shallow pockets for quick transferring, first baseman gloves have deeper pockets that support the frequent scooping by players in this position.
First base gloves have open webbing, as opposed to other types of gloves with closed webbing. The open webbing is to optimize functionality. In detail, these gloves can have Dual Post Webbing or H-Webbing.
First baseman gloves are a lot larger than regular gloves. They offer a wider surface area, which contributes to a bulky-looking form. Generally, these gloves are 12″ to 13″ long. To give you a better idea, this is about the same as your Macbook Pro! Their width is typically 8″, measured from the base of the thumb crotch to the outer end of the opposite side.
However, there are also sizing for youth players, if that is what you are looking for.
Despite differing drastically in terms of shape and size, the material used to manufacture first base gloves are the same as regular gloves. Leather is used in both types.
However, if we are being technical, the gloves can be made of varying sub-types of leather, such as kip, cowhide, steerhide, and full-grain, among others. The specific leather used can influence the durability, feel, and price of the gloves.
Nevertheless, the leather construction converges a good balance of sturdiness and flexibility, which is necessary for first baseman players to perform well.
7. Other Add-Ons
Most of the time, first baseman gloves have extra layers of padding to cushion players’ hands against wild balls and particularly hard throws.
First baseman gloves can also include wrist adjustment features for enhanced comfort and convenience. They provide a firmer fit to support players’ performance. These can come as a Velcro strap, extra lacing, or a D-ring. However, these special add-ons differ from product to product. Both first baseman and regular gloves can offer them.
First Base Glove vs. Regular Glove: Functionality
The above qualities for design are to work hand-in-hand with functionality. Just a reminder, first baseman players, also referred to as the first sackers or cornermen, are in charge of fielding ground balls and receiving throws from other players on the field—pitcher, catcher, and infielders. By the same token, they need gloves that assist in handling and offer boosted control. First base gloves should allow players to scoop up the baseball quickly and easily. Players also want to do this without picking up dust and dirt along with the ball. Hence, in this regard, the gloves fulfill a unique need.
First Base Glove vs Regular Glove: Price
Price varies with gloves. You can get a first base glove for as little as $50, but some gloves can cost up to $500. How much money you will have to shell out depends on a variety of factors—brand, quality, features,…—and not so much about whether it is a first base glove or a regular glove.
It is important to invest in a good pair of first base gloves if you are serious about playing the said position. However, that being said, you should not assume that a very expensive glove is automatically unrivaled. As with any other sporting gear, or any product for that matter, the best is what suits you.
There are many standard-quality but affordable gloves that you can find in the market. Reliable brands that manufacture baseball gloves are Rawlings, Wilson, and Mizuno. These manufacturers provide both first base and regular gloves. You can look for either type in official websites, online retailers, or make an in-person visit to brick-and-mortar stores.
Baseball is a sport for everyone. So, rest assured that you can expect to find gloves, both the first baseman and regular type, for yourself at a fitting price point. Simply put, with so many products and price tags in the saturated baseball market, you are bound to get a product that aligns with what you are able and willing to pay for.
First Base Glove vs. Regular Glove: Care & Maintenance
Care and maintenance are relatively similar for both types of gloves. The biggest difference is that you do not have to designate any extra time and attention to addressing finger stalls. You will want to break it in if it is brand new, clean it regularly, and condition it after every upkeep session. You can learn more how to break your first base gloves here.
To effectively care for and maintain baseball gloves, seek out specially made products, like glove oils or conditioners, leather cleaners, leather wipes, leather dry brushes, etc. Otherwise, you can also opt for homemade solutions and other workarounds. Vaseline or olive oil lying around in the house are good alternatives to commercial leather conditioners. Most of the time, simple mixtures of mild, non-fragranced, and non-alcohol soap will suffice. Soft toothbrushes and thin cotton cloths can substitute leather wipes and dry brushes.
What are Some of the Best First Base Gloves in the Market
In our opinion, these brands provide the top-tiered first baseman baseball gloves: Rawlings, Wilson, Mizuno, Under Armour, Marucci, and Easton. They are all solid options, offered by reputable brands that have been in the baseball manufacturing industry for a long time.
However, there are many other lesser-known brands that provide just as good first baseman gloves. You can always try scouting the Internet and forums!
So, you have reached the end of this article on the topic of first base glove vs regular glove. Did you enjoy it? Hopefully, you have learned a lot about this important baseball gear, especially the answer to why are first baseman gloves different.
With that said, if you have any other follow-up questions or thoughts, you are welcome to let us know in the comments. We are always super happy to hear from our readers. So, do not hesitate! Also, if you know anyone who will appreciate the content of this article, feel free to share it with them.
Five years as a baseball player, my training approaches with this game give me the motivation to inspire and support young players more. Like all sports, we should start with the desire to have fun and maintain our resilience to strive better at any competition. But, of course, some of us want to have some fun and train for better health. It does not matter what your initial purpose is; I believe that most people ever holding on to the baseball bat will fall in love with the games as I do.