Baseball gloves, including outfield gloves have been increasing in price recently, making it tougher to get the glove you want at the price you can afford. This post will break down the best outfield gloves for your budget, ensuring you can get the best glove no matter your budget.
What’s the Right Size for an Outfield Glove?
Outfielders typically want a longer glove to help them cover the outfield. Most outfielders in the MLB will use a 12.75″ glove, with some players even using a glove as long as 13″ (Bryce Harper is a good example). A longer outfield glove will give you the extra inch you need when you’re running down a gapper and extending to steal an RBI double away from the opponent. It also creates a deeper pocket that will improve ball security when you have to dive or bang into the wall. There isn’t a worse feeling in the outfield than catching a ball, but having it slip out as you crash into the turf, and a deep pocket usually solves that problem.
What’s the Right Web for an Outfield Glove?
This simple design provides the deep, sure pocket most outfielders want in addition to the stability needed for catching groundballs and flyballs in the outgrass. Though it takes practice, the holes in that pattern can also benefit an outfielder on a sunny day when you need to shield the sun but track the ball. By peeking through the holes, you can simultaneously shield the worst of the sun. (Editor’s Note: As an outfielder, I’ve heard from pros that this is done, but never done it myself!)
Other far less popular web styles you’ll see include the trapeze (or six finger) and modified trapeze webs, which are great options but a bit tougher to break in to your liking. While we’re going to recommend one trapeze mitt on this list, we remain partial to the simple H-web.
Here are our picks for each price level:
Under $100: Mizuno Franchise 12.5”
The Franchise series is one of the best bangs for your buck, as its $85 price is affordable and the materials are suitable for a lot of levels of play. It may not be suitable for catching 90+ MPH, but it will be perfect for most other players.
This specific model is 12.5” and has an H-web, which creates the length and deep pocket needed to snag fly balls in the outfield. There aren’t many good gloves in this segment, but this Mizuno Franchise is amazing for its price. Get this model at MizunoUSA.com for $85.
Under $200: Mizuno Prime Elite GPE1275
Mizuno strikes again at the mid-level price-point. The Prime Elite is an upgraded version of the Classic Pro Soft model, which was another Mizuno model that excelled at this price level. The Prime Elite is a steerhide model that feels smooth and provides good durability for the price.
The specific Prime Elite model we recommend is the GPE1275, a 12.75” outfield mitt with a modified trapeze web. While this web style is not our favorite for the outfield, it does create a good pocket for both fly balls and grounders in the outgrass.
Under $300: Wilson A2000 1799
We believe the A2000 is the best glove line within this budget, and the 1799 is our favorite (and the pro favorite) outfield pattern from Wilson. It is a 12.75” model with an H-web, and creates the deep pocket that will give outfielders the confidence to hunt down any fly ball within reach in the outfield.
At $299, the A2000 1799 is right on the edge of this price level, but it’s the best model we found within this budget. You can get the A2000 1799 at a few different retailers, including Baseball Express, Dick’s, Academy Sports, and Wilson.
Money is No Object: Rawlings Pro Preferred PRO3039
The 303 pattern is our favorite outfield pattern from any company, as it features a deep and symmetrical pocket that is perfect for the two-in-the-pinky grip most elite outfielders use. The Pro Preferred is also one of our favorite models within this budget, and will help you get your money’s worth through many seasons of heavy use.
While the Mizuno Pro models give the Pro Preferred a run for their money, the 3039 pattern is too good to pass up on when you’re spending this much money. Get Luis Robert’s gameday Pro Preferred PROS3039 at Rawlings.com for $400. We also found one on Walmart (above) for $270, though that’s probably not going to last.