How To Choose a Glove? Don't be afraid to go big!

Dang, there are a lot of Bradley Gloves.

I did that for a reason. When a kid chooses a glove, or a parent chooses a glove for a kid, it's good to have some eye candy, some variety. This is supposed to be fun, not boring.

But if you're confused, I'm here to help. My first bit of advice, if you're shopping for a kid who's still developing confidence with his catching hand is to go big. Believe it or not, there's a good chance your kid will have more fun playing with a slightly bigger, more forgiving glove in the early stages of his baseball development, then gravitate toward something smaller as he gets older...especially if he's an infielder.

Let me back up and repeat that, using some different words. Little kids often prefer bigger gloves and older players often prefer smaller gloves, especially infielders. 

There are a lot of reasons for this. Number one is that kids like to catch the ball in the web. Why? Because it doesn't sting! Older, more experienced players, actually prefer to "feel" the ball hit their palm, and do not like the feeling of "losing the ball" in the web.

All these sizes, from 11" to 12.5" in our youth, may seem perplexing, but don't let it intimidate you. Same thing with the web styles. On young players, those webs are basically fashion statements. Let them pick one that catches their eye. As for picking the right size, try to judge your kid's playing ability. Would he benefit from having a little more glove, a little more margin for error when reaching to catch a ball? If so, go big!

If he's a confident fielder who's already working on the quick-exchanges needed for middle infield play, then maybe go down a quarter-inch. The tiny gloves used by Major League middle infielders are a badge of honor, so to speak, earned after hours and hours of practice, building hand-eye coordination and confidence.

But it's my belief that most kids want a little more glove.


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