If you’re an infielder looking for a premium performance glove, you’ve come to the right place.
Here we take a look at the best infield gloves out there today. From materials, to construction, to key features, we’ll tell you everything you need to know. So read on, and get ready to make that all-important purchase.
1. Wilson A2000 SuperSkin
Wilson’s A2000 SuperSkin is one of its “Pedrioa-fit” gloves, designed for players with smaller hands. Taking its name from star player Dustin Pedroia, it has a smaller hand opening and narrower finger stalls than other gloves.
Then there’s the SuperSkin, an innovative combination of leather and synthetic fibers. It makes the glove lighter and more flexible than all-leather versions. Wilson claims it’s twice as strong, whilst weighing just half as much as other gloves. It also repels moisture, so you won’t find it sliding around in damp conditions.
The same attention to detail is evident in the finger stalls. First up, there’s the welting that runs along the full length. That’s designed to give better playability whatever position you’re in.
Then there are the dual leather strips placed along the back of the fingers. These reinforce the glove, helping it maintain its shape throughout the season and beyond.
Last but not least, there are colors. If you want a distinctive glove, this might be the range for you. Choose from red, tan and yellow; grey, red and black; or our personal favorite, silver, brick red and black. If you’re really looking to stand out, go for the blonde, black and tropical blue colorway.
2. Louisville Slugger Xeno Fastpitch
Constructed from high-quality leather, it features a band of memory foam at the wrist. That foam will mold itself precisely to the shape of your wrist, giving a perfect fit. You can take a flying leap for the ball, confident you won’t lose your glove at the crucial moment!
Styled in white and ice blue and with embroidered logos on the back and wrist, it’s a great looking glove. It features soft lining, and it’s game-ready with minimal breaking in. Be warned though: there’s a seam on the back of the wrist that can rub for the first few uses.
This is a glove with a closed weave web, so it’s a better choice for players on third base. That’s because it will deal well with the harder hits you’re more likely to receive there. Other infielders may prefer a glove with an H-web, I-web, post web or modified trapeze web. They’re better for quick ball-to-hand transfers.
3. Rawlings Heritage Pro
If you’re worried that might make it too stiff, never fear. Rawlings has taken the strain out of breaking it in. Their factory processes claim to have done 70% of the work for you. That leaves just enough room to give it your own unique feel. Expect that to take about a week.
The palm is lined with cowhide and there’s split leather welting to help keep the ball in the pocket.
At the wrist, a thermoformed strap ensures a secure fit. As with the Wilson A2000, that strip is designed to keep moisture at bay. So whether you’re sweating or playing in the rain, you won’t need to worry about your glove slipping. And for an extra bit of luxury, there’s a padded thumb loop too.
There’s a pro-H web, making this a glove with plenty of flexibility for different infield positions. The Finger Shift design helps you close it with minimal effort, and protects your hand from stinging hits.
4. Wilson 6-4-3 Pedroia Fit
Another glove designed for players with smaller hands, the Wilson 6-4-3 features all the modifications requested by Boston Red Sox player Dustin Pedroia. Smaller hand openings? Check. Slimmer finger stalls? Check. Snug fit? Longer laces? Low profile heel? Check, check, check.
There are versions for both left- and right-handed players. And while this is an all-leather glove, you won’t have to spend weeks breaking it in. The double play leather, double palm construction and rolled dual welting are all designed to be game-ready fast.
The welting is formed from thin strips of high-quality leather, tightly rolled. It makes sure the glove keeps its shape game after game, but won’t leave you fumbling with balls that bounce off the surface.
Then there’s the carefully positioned layer of leather between the outer shell and the palm liner. As well as increasing durability, it keeps the pocket stable. It’s another feature to give you an extra confidence boost on the field.
Styled in all black, this is a serious-looking glove packed with great features. All that, and it’s reasonably priced too.
5. Rawlings Sandlot Series
First up, the basics: it’s available for either left- or right-handers. You can choose from a range of different glove lengths. And you can pick your preferred web style, so there’s plenty of scope for customization.
A lot of consideration has gone into making this a super-comfortable glove. The factory process is designed to break it in up to the 90 percent mark. That means minimal extra time and effort needed before it’s ready for that big game.
The palm pads will absorb shocks effectively, even from pitches that break the 70 miles per hour barrier. Your fingers will be well-protected too. There’s plenty of padding all along the lining of the finger backs.
Add to that a good, deep pocket that helps keep your catches secure. It’s well shaped too, so you’ll still be able to get to the ball quickly for fast plays.
All in all, this is a great glove with bags of features and vintage style.
6. Rawlings Player Preferred
The well-loved Player Preferred series from Rawlings can be used for either baseball or softball. It’s available in left- and right-hand fits and a range of sizes. The basket web will work in almost any field position too. Plenty of outfielders use it, though for our money it’s best suited to infield play.
The palm padding is called “Zero Shock”, which tells you everything you need to know about what Rawlings want to achieve here. Are they successful? Absolutely. This glove will absorb the impact from even fast pitches.
There are plenty of other features designed for comfort. The adjustable wrist strap has Velcro for easy use and to ensure a snug fit. It’s lined with fur too, to prevent it from rubbing.
The leather is soft and supple, and it doesn’t take too much work to break it in. A few applications of glove conditioner will help it along the way. One issue, though, is the seam that runs at the base of the thumb. For some players, it can cause discomfort. The only way to tell if you’re one of them is to try it on.
7. Mizuno Pro GMP2-400S
Mizuno is expert in high-end baseball gear, and their Pro range of gloves is trusted by thousands of players. They’re available in all manner of combinations, but for infielders, we recommend the GMP2-400S.
The deep III web and smaller 11.5-inch pattern work particularly well for players at shortstop and second base. You can choose your pocket depth depending on your style of play. Shallow works best for middle infielders, while deep will suit shortstops and third base.
The pocket sits directly beneath the web, helping it mold to your hand as you break it in. There’s also an index finger pad to offer extra protection in defensive play.
The materials here are top notch. The glove is made from American Kip leather, tanned in Japan. Its tighter fibers ensure it’s both flexible and hard-wearing. The same leather is used for both the shell and the palm liner, giving a consistent finish.
One thing to bear in mind is that this is very definitely a glove for adults. If you’re looking for a Mizuno infield glove for a youth player, go for the Classic Futures series.
8. Nokona X2 Elite
This is a premium glove, and its specifications are reflected in the price. It’s constructed of two different types of leather: stampede steerhide and kangaroo. The result is a tough yet supple finish, soft enough to be used straight out of the box. That’s right: you won’t need to break in this glove at all.
It has a conventional open back and H-web, making it ideal for second or third base or shortstop. And while technically a baseball pattern, its deeper pocket would also suit slow pitch softball.
Nokona has been making baseball gloves since 1934, and their experience is evident in the quality on display here. The name comes from the town where they’re produced, Nocona in Texas, and the firm stands behind their workmanship. These gloves are backed by a two-year manufacturer’s warranty.
9. Rawlings R9
The shell here is made completely of leather and Rawlings claim that it’s 80 percent broken in at the factory. Be prepared to spend a little time on that last 20 percent, though. Some glove conditioning oil is a wise investment to make sure it’s ready for your game.
Its tapered fit is designed to keep it secure on smaller hands. There’s also a reinforced palm to protect from the sting of hard hits.
The webbing here is modified trapeze. There’s a conventional back, and plenty of padding all along the finger back liners. The pattern is versatile enough to be used by pitchers, as well as second base, shortstop and third base.
A good-looking glove in black with red accents, the R9 offers a lot of features for your money.
10. Franklin Sports Field Master
For the price of three artisan coffees, you’ll get a comfortable glove that’s great for the occasional game. It’s made of synthetic fibers rather than leather – so a good choice if you’re vegetarian or vegan. That does, though, mean that it doesn’t breathe, and it’s not as hardwearing as the leather versions.
It will need a little breaking in, but nothing excessive. There are some nice features, too.
The “contour fit system” allows you to adjust the thumb fitting, and the hand-formed pocket makes it easy to scoop the ball. The 11-inch pattern is perfect for middle infielders, with an I-web design that’s brilliant for quick transition plays. There’s also a 12-inch pattern with trapeze web that would suit infielders and pitchers.
This isn’t likely to stand up to a season of league games. But for anyone looking to enjoy an occasional knock about in the back yard, it’s a great option.
Time to go shopping!
We hope you’ve enjoyed our round-up of the best infield gloves available today.
Whether you’re male or female, wannabe All-Star or back-yard player, on a budget or ready to flash the cash – the perfect glove is out there waiting for you. Consider your price point, playing style and any special features you can’t live without. Then all you need to do is choose the best match. Simple, right?
Happy shopping – and good luck for that next game!