If an outfield player is the last line of defense in baseball, an outfield glove is a player’s last resort to ensure excellent defense.
We can all remember our first outfield gloves. They are meant to have lots of padding and cushioning only to ensure great protection against fast and aggressive balls.
Of course, we had none of those…
Things are different today, and anyone can now purchase the gloves you can see in the MLB.
Browsing through outfield gloves will give you lots of options, making the final decision a bit confusing. After all, apart from the style and colors, they have similar features.
There is nothing to be worried about, though. I have put together this list of best outfield gloves for baseball, as well as reasons why you should consider them.
Image (click on it to zoom)
Check The Price
Best for Overall Performance
Franklin Sports ProFlex
Best for Value for Money
Rawlings PRO Preferred Baseball Glove Series
Best for Sweaty Hands
Rawlings Heart of the Hide
Best for Comfort
Best for Durability
Mizuno Franchise Baseball Glove Series
Best for Quality
Mizuno Prime Elite Series
Best for Flexibility
My list is based on two different things.
First, I chose the best gloves based on my personal experience with them.
Second, these are some of the best-rated and most-reviewed gloves on the market.
I have said it so many times, and I will always say it until something better pops up. This is one of the best outfield gloves out there and for some good reasons.
When professional players like Tim Anderson or Ke’Bryan Hayes show up with this glove, you know it is up to some good performance.
The mitt comes in a few sizes, with the 12.75-inch size being the most popular one. It is available in a few colors, but everyone loves the black and gray design.
Choose the hand orientation, and you are ready to order. Now, what about its performance?
The SuperSkin material is basically a microfiber one. It weighs two times less than the modern Pro Stock Leather, but it is also two times more durable.
It will resist moisture too, which is a great plus. Besides, it is easy to look after.
Then, you have the flat finger binding technology. In other words, if you like to play with your finger outside the mitt, you can do it without losing control.
Furthermore, the spin control technology reduces spin by boosting friction once the ball touches the glove.
Finally, it is worth mentioning the rolled dual welting, exquisite comfort, wrist lining, and thin heel pad.
- High level of performance overall
- Numerous technologies
- Great for control
- Lightweight and comfortable
- Easy to look after
- Might feel a bit too small for those with very large hands, so order one size up
Most commonly sold in the 13-inch size, this mitt is one of the best outfield gloves in terms of sizes. It is great for those with large hands as well, without having to order a size up.
Since it requires a bit of breaking in, you can get a perfect fit in no time.
Generally speaking, it does feel much softer than other gloves, so breaking in will be a breeze.
In terms of quality, you have good value for money. This is not the best mitt in the world, but not the most expensive one either. I find it excellent if you are shopping on a budget.
It comes with a high-quality cowhide palm, as well as a PU PVC hybrid shell that can easily stand the test of time.
The glove fits perfectly and comes in more sizes. It also has a bit of adjustability by the wrist. The strap can be tightened based on the size of your wrist.
Talking about the design, there is also a basket web design for more flexibility.
The glove is quite versatile. It is mostly aimed at baseball players of all ages and skills. It makes no difference if you are a high school player or you are just getting used to baseball as an adult.
However, it is also suitable for softball, among other similar sports.
- Good value for money
- More sizes available
- Suitable for more sports
- Flexible design
- Little to no breaking in required
- Might feel a bit small
Available in the classic 12.75-inch size for outfield players, over 20 different colors and designs, and both left and right-hand orientation, these gloves look ideal for everyone.
They come with a bunch of quality features and can match anyone’s preferences in terms of style.
Confidence is probably the best word to describe the mitt. Put it on, get used to it, and it will feel like a larger hand, simple as that. You can catch any ball coming your way, no issues whatsoever.
It is excellent for anyone, regardless of skill level.
It works well for newbies, as well as high school players and even professionals.
Moving on to technologies and quality standards, you have 100% wool padding, which is essential for the pocket.
Besides, the material is more likely to help retain the shape in the long run. Furthermore, the sheepskin palm lining keeps the hand comfy and dry.
Laces are also based on leather. Once tightened, you know they will never go loose. There is also a padded thumb sleeve.
Like other leather gloves, this one requires breaking in, which is a fairly simple and quick process.
- Good protection against sweat and moisture
- Suitable for all ages and skill levels
- Good shape retention
- Feels great on the hand
- Padded thumb sleeve
- Very stiff out of the box, but breaking in is easy
Loads of different styles and colors will make this glove suitable for those who appreciate style. To me, it is all about what a glove can do, rather than what it looks like, and trust me, this glove can do a lot.
Once you put it on, it fits perfectly. It boosts your confidence out of the box.
It is suitable for players of all ages and skills. You may see it in an official high school game, as well as a professional league. The leather stands out. It is made of 5% of steer hides.
It is strong and durable, but it also promotes a perfect fit. After all, the laces are also based on leather, not to mention the thumb sleeve.
In terms of comfort, the deer-tanned cowhide palm lining is soft and less likely to affect your performance. Then, it is worth noting the soft full-grain linings for your finger backs.
The thermoformed hand opening keeps the wrist safe and comfy too, but it also makes the glove more breathable.
Now, just like most other types of quality leather baseball gloves, this one also requires breaking in. Here comes the good news, though.
About 65% of the breaking in is done in the factory, so you are only responsible for the last bit, which is mostly about finding the perfect fit.
Last, but not least, the glove is available in left or right-hand orientation too.
- Superior technologies for comfort
- High-quality leather design
- Easy breaking in
- Durable and strong
- Suitable for all skill levels
- Contour means it is a bit on the small side when it comes to sizing
Wilson A1000 glove is one of the best outfield gloves if you want value for money and durability. It comes in more colors and combos, as well as different sizes.
Plus, make sure you pick the hand orientation before placing an order.
Just like most other gloves from Wilson, this one is based on premium leather. While there are gloves out there made of higher quality leather or innovative materials, the truth is it is hard to beat this mitt for durability.
I am not sure what Wilson did about it, but it seems to last for ages.
You will most likely get a new glove because you get sick of this one, rather than wearing it out.
Moving on to rolled dual welting, some people see it as nothing but a matter of appearance. I agree to disagree. The welting is built into the liner. The support is flawless.
More importantly, this glove retains its shape over years of consistent use.
Finally, it is worth noting the so-called DriLex wrist lining too. You might be familiar with it if you have used Wilson gloves before.
Its role is to enhance breathability, so it keeps the hands comfortable and dry, regardless of how much you normally sweat.
- Impressive durability
- Retains shape extremely well
- Comfortable design
- More sizes and styles
- Good support
- Feels very stiff out of the box
Mizuno Franchise Baseball Glove Series have always looked amazing, and this appearance is not just because of a good designer or a smartly picked color combination, but because of the quality standards as well.
After all, these gloves have always stood up in the crowd with their build.
Available in a few different colors, the tan-brown design is by far the most popular one. Now, talking about quality, get ready for a series of technologies.
You have a full-grain leather shell, as well as laced binding. The fit is perfect and slight adjustability makes it suitable for all kinds of wrists.
The glove is super comfortable and comes with hand-based patterns. It is designed with the human hand in mind, so it literally feels like an extension of your hand.
The hand-based patterns obviously help with the overall feel and comfort too.
Moving on, the ortholite palm pad stops the ball from spinning at impact and reduces the sting. You have the modern MZO lining too, which clears out moisture and skin away.
The HiLo lacing is an alternative to classic laces that offers more flexibility.
Bottom line, Mizuno has upped the game for pretty much every aspect of its glove.
- Plenty of technologies
- Super comfortable
- Great appearance
- Easy to break in
- Good sizing fit
- Laces might feel a bit soft when tightened too much
If you have used Mizuno gloves before, you probably already know that this brand does not fool around with quality.
There is always some new technology or material used in the process, only to make the mitt stand out in the crowd.
Moving on to features, you have roll welting, which defines the clean appearance of the glove. It comes in more sizes and colors. No matter what you choose, you will have the same clean look.
Besides, the design adds a bit of extra stability around the fingers.
The palm liner is incredibly soft. It feels good, and it is comfortable, but it also helps with ball control. You feel like controlling it with your actual hand, rather than a glove.
Moreover, there is a rugged silicon patch to prevent slips.
Made of real leather, the glove will require breaking in.
It has professional patterns throughout the surface for better ball control, similar to what you can see in more expensive mitts.
Talking about control, you will also appreciate the modern finger stall shape, which also adds to the flexibility.
- Great level of flexibility
- Provides good control
- Soft palm liner for a good feel
- Good value for money
- Finger core technology
- Aggressive break in period
Differences Between Infield Gloves and Outfield Gloves
The roles played by infield and outfield players are extremely different, but also quite important.
This is why you need to take your time when browsing through outfield gloves, but also understand the particularities and differences between different types of mitts.
The pocket depth is one of the most significant differences, often overlooked by newbies. The outfield player is supposed to chase fly balls.
The player is supposed to make very long throws into the infield too. This is why the pocket must be deeper.
It provides better control for the ball, but it also ensures the ball does not bounce out. You basically need to retain possession at any given time.
On the other hand, the infield player is supposed to do many turnaround plays, hang around the bases and make quick transitions between caches and throws.
The pocket is not that deep, but deep enough to provide security. At the same time, too many movements obviously ask for a lighter glove.
With these thoughts in mind, the length is another major difference between the infield and outfield gloves. The outfield glove is meant to have a longer size.
After all, you need a bit of extra range to catch those difficult balls.
The back has some particularities too. Outfield gloves feature a closed back. The wrist support is much better too, especially since you deal with fast-flying balls.
You want to be able to catch them without risking your wrist.
Then, infielders will rely on different gloves. After all, the position is extremely important when choosing the glove.
Outfielders have a few crystal clear goals in the game, so outfield gloves will be similar in features, size, and operation.
It makes no difference where you are. Things like the webbing or the pocket depth are not that relevant, despite the small differences between one manufacturer and another.
At the end of the day, it is mostly a matter of personal preferences.
How Should an Outfield Glove Fit?
If this is the first time, you are looking for outfield gloves, choosing the right model can be a bit daunting, especially when you shop online.
Different people have hands in different sizes. A glove in the right size could match a hand perfectly, but it could also feel too large or too tight for a different hand.
Generally speaking, outfield gloves for anyone over 14 years old should be in the 12 or 13-inch size. They can go down to as little as nine inches in size, but this size is mostly aimed at seven-year-old kids.
As you can see, sizes are quite diversified. To make sure a glove suits you, you should try to figure out how it feels on the hand and wrist. These are the two main elements of comfort.
On the same note, a perfectly fitting glove will also ensure a high level of performance on the field.
Generally speaking, a glove must come with a snug fit. If it feels floppy, you will struggle when it comes to catching balls.
On the other hand, if it feels too tight, you will not even be able to get your hand in. Sure, you can squeeze it in, but it will feel extremely uncomfortable and will hurt your performance.
The fit and wrist size makes the difference. With these thoughts in mind, it pays off going for an adjustable strap. There should be no issues, then.
As for the fit, it is difficult to guess, but I have a few tips.
- Try out different gloves from your friends and teammates to figure out which size is more suitable for your hand.
- Different brands may have different sizing standards, so try gloves from different manufacturers, even if they are in the same size.
- Even if you plan to shop online, go to a local store and try out the gloves you are interested in. You can see how they feel before shopping online.
Choosing the Best Outfield Gloves for Baseball – Our Buying Guide
There are a lot of outfield gloves.
Some of them are better than others, whether it comes to your personal preferences or particularities in terms of quality and performance.
The price or the actual features are not the only things to pay attention to. Here are a few other considerations.
Size of the Glove
When I mean the size of the glove, I am not referring to the classic size every brand gives you. Sure, outfield gloves for adults are usually around 12.75 or 13 inches.
However, this size is not always related to the actual internal size.
Outfield gloves are meant to be long. You need extra length for difficult balls. In many circumstances, you will literally have no time to think or plan something. You just need to run and go for it.
At this point, you need a long glove. Ideally, it should be a bit longer than average, but the inside fit should feel snugly.
If you buy this glove for your kid, you will obviously need a smaller size.
Outfield gloves tend to have deeper pockets anyway, but the deeper it is, the better you will feel.
The depth gives you control over the ball. Imagine catching the ball with no pocket, it will hurt, and the ball will most likely get out of your hand.
The depth is not everything, though, but also the material.
Cowhide leather laces are quite tight. They provide more strength and control. More importantly, it will absorb the impact, which means less pain.
Deep pockets offer a bit of extra room, too, so you can handle tough balls much easier.
The best outfield gloves must be easy to operate. You do not have to be a rocket scientist to figure out how to run them, but make sure they are straightforward, without causing any difficulties.
For example, once the ball touches the palm, modern technologies will reduce the spin a little. You need to close the hand at the exact same moment. Otherwise, the ball will bounce out of your hand.
You get the point. A good glove will allow you to open your hand and close it within less than a second.
Some will suggest getting a glove that requires little and quick breaking in. The truth is the stiffer a glove is, the more likely it is to last.
A glove that requires no breaking in at all will not last that long. Talking about the operation, opt for a lightweight glove.
Materials and Quality
The actual material will define the quality and tell you what to expect from a glove.
Outfielder gloves are made of different materials. Some of them are based on cowhide, others are made of synthetic leather. Then, you have full-grain leather, too, not to mention pigskin. And the list can go on…
From personal experience, gloves based on cowhide and pigskin will cost less. They are economical, but they are less likely to last for a lifetime.
On the other hand, a glove made of full grain or steer hide will most likely last for ages, especially if well looked after.
At the end of the day, it depends on your priorities, requirements, and overall budget, of course.
Some gloves can cost four or five times more than others.
Best Outfield Gloves for Baseball – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What glove do pro outfielders use?
Different professionals rely on different gloves, yet some names are more common than others. You will notice Rawlings is one of the most popular brands used in the MLB, followed closely by Wilson, which is world-renowned for its high-quality sports equipment.
How do I choose an outfield glove?
There are a few things to pay attention to when choosing outfield gloves. Most importantly, make sure the glove matches your goals, style, and preferences. Your available budget is also quite important. Other than that, try to hunt value for money based on the materials and pocket.
What glove size is best for the outfield?
Different players may have different sizes. Even if they are the same age, their hands might be incredibly disproportional. Normally, outfield gloves range between 12 and 13 inches. Most outfielders will do with 12.75 to 13 inches. Kids will obviously require smaller gloves, around nine inches.
Deciding on the best outfield gloves for baseball can be a bit tricky with so many options out there, but no matter how many professionals you ask, you will keep hearing the same makes and models.
Wilson A2000 is probably the most balanced glove out there in terms of materials, quality, durability, and technologies. It offers good value for money as well and is highly recommended by a few MLB players.
If comfort is your main priority, you just cannot go wrong with Rawlings Heart of the Hide, which is just as popular in the MLB.
You just can’t go wrong with these seven gloves – all of them have their own unique features that make them stand out. However, if for some reason you don’t like any of them then use our buying guide to help you make the best decision for your needs!