An Introduction to Rawlings’ Youth Baseball Gloves
As spring rolls around and little league tryouts begin, parents start gearing up to buy new baseball equipment for their aspiring sluggers and fireballers. One of the most important pieces of equipment is a well-fitting, high quality baseball glove. For generations, Rawlings has been one of the most iconic and trusted brands for baseball gloves. Rawlings offers a variety of youth glove models under their popular Gold Glove line, designed to help young players enhance their fielding skills.
When considering a Rawlings Gold Glove for your child, there are several factors to keep in mind. First, you’ll want to select the right size. Measure your child’s hand from the tip of the index finger to the bottom of the palm. Rawlings offers gloves for ages 3-15, in sizes that range from 9 inches up to 13 inches. Be sure to get an accurate measurement so the glove isn’t too large and cumbersome or too small and restrictive.
Next, consider the position your child plays. Infielders generally do best with smaller gloves, around 11-12.5 inches, which allow for quick exchanges and transfers. Larger gloves, 12.5-13 inches, are preferred for outfield positions to help snag fly balls. Pitchers and catchers may prefer something in between for versatility. The patterns and shapes of Rawlings’ gloves are designed with specific positions in mind, so select one tailored for your player’s needs.
When it comes to materials, most Rawlings youth gloves feature full-grain leather which forms a pocket and breaks in readily. Higher-end models are crafted from soft, supple Pro Grade leather meticulously tanned and processed for a luxurious feel. Leather quality impacts the glove’s durability and performance over time. Consider opting for a more premium leather if your budget allows.
Rawlings youth gloves also boast a variety of cool features:
- Palm padding and finger stalls promote comfort and protection.
- Basket web patterns offer a deeper pocket great for infielders and pitchers.
- Tapered closed web designs provide a snug, secure fit for outfielders and catchers.
- Soft touch linings wick away moisture keeping hands dry and comfortable.
- Customizable back straps allow you to adjust the fit as your player’s hand grows.
Now you’re ready to check out some of the top glove models Rawlings offers for aspiring youth players:
Rawlings Gold Glove Elite Youth Series
A top-of-the-line option featuring pro quality construction, Pro Grade leather, and dynamic patterns and colors. With superior craftsmanship and a broken-in feel right off the shelf, it provides serious performance ready for game day. Around $199.
Rawlings Gold Glove Limited Edition Gloves
Unique collector’s edition gloves styled after the iconic Gold Gloves awarded to pro players. These eye-catching gloves offer premium materials, patterns, and graphics from your child’s favorite players and teams. Priced around $149.
Rawlings Gold Glove RGG Youth Series
A more affordable take on the classic Gold Glove line with pro-inspired looks. Features quality full-grain leather, soft palm and index finger padding, and position-specific patterns. Durable construction ideal for practice and games. Approximately $59.
With the 2023 Little League season starting up soon, now is the time to shop for that new Rawlings baseball glove. When choosing a mitt for your young fielder, the Gold Glove line offers pro-caliber quality, comfort and performance tailored specifically for developing players. Just decide on size, position, and features to select the perfect model to help your child gain confidence and take their fielding skills to the next level.
The Rawlings GG Elite Series: Top Features and Benefits
For young baseball players looking to take their game to the next level, having the right gear makes a huge difference. One essential piece of equipment is a high quality glove that promotes confidence and enhances performance in the field. That’s why so many serious players turn to the Rawlings GG Elite series.
As the flagship line from one of the most iconic baseball brands, the Rawlings GG Elite gloves offer premium materials and construction ideal for aspiring youth stars. Let’s take a closer look at some of the key features that make these gloves stand out.
Rawlings sources the supple, full-grain leather for the GG Elite series from the same tanneries that provide leather for their pro-level mitts. Handcrafted from top 5% Pro Grade leather, these gloves offer an ultra-soft feel right off the shelf. The leather breaks in quickly yet remains durable and resilient season after season.
Every detail of GG Elite gloves is tailored for specific positions on the diamond. Infielders benefit from shallow pocket designs with open webs for quick exchanges. Outfielders and catchers have deeper pockets and closed patterns to secure fly balls. Pitchers get a versatile blend of control and flexibility in their finger slots and webs. The patterns mimic pro mitts to shave reaction time.
Plush Comfort Lining
Inside, the GG Elite gloves feature a soft terry cloth lining that wicks away moisture to keep hands dry and comfortable even on hot, humid days. Thick heel and palm padding add cushioning to prevent sting while enhancing the pocket shape. The smooth lining and padding conform to the player’s hand for a custom, broken-in feel.
Adjustable Wrist Strap
To ensure the perfect fit as a player’s hand grows, GG Elite gloves have a dual snap closure on the wrist strap. Kids can quickly customize the strap as needed, tightening or loosening it to find their ideal fit. This helps optimize control and boosts confidence on the field.
Vivid Graphics and Colors
The GG Elite series gloves incorporate bold, eye-catching graphics inspired by Rawlings pro collection mitts. Vibrant colors and patterns give these gloves serious style to go with their premium performance. Players can express their personalities with unique styles including camo, stars and stripes designs.
In addition to these excellent features, GG Elite gloves offer some other great perks like:
- Soft finger stall linings reduce irritation and hot spots.
- Palm padding and index finger protection absorb shock.
- Tapered closed web provides maximum pocket depth.
- Basket web promotes fast exchanges for infielders.
- Full-grain finger pads stand up to heavy use.
Parents looking for a high-level youth glove backed by a trusted name know they can count on the consistent quality and craftsmanship of the Rawlings GG Elite series. These gloves give developing players pro-inspired looks, premium materials, and innovative features to gain confidence and take their fielding skills to the next level. Check out the GG Elite series today and find the perfect glove to help your young star own the diamond!
How the GG Elite Compares to Other Rawlings Youth Gloves
For young players ready to take the next step in their baseball journey, having a top-notch glove can make a major difference in building confidence and skills. Rawlings offers several youth glove lines, but the GG Elite stands out from the pack with its premium features and pro-level quality.
How does the GG Elite compare to some of Rawlings’ other popular youth models like the Gold Glove, Heart of Hide, and Pro Preferred? Let’s break it down.
The GG Elite uses exclusive pro-quality leather specially tanned for maximum softness and durability. Other Rawlings gloves use leather graded a step down. The GG Elite lining also contains more padding for a custom fit.
With patterns mirroring pro gloves, the GG Elite provides optimal pocket depth and control for each position. The Heart of Hide and Pro Preferred offer similar performance, while the Gold Glove has good versatility across positions.
Plush lining and adjustable straps give GG Elite gloves a comfortable, customized feel. The Gold Glove also prioritizes comfort, while Heart of Hide and Pro Preferred favor performance over comfort.
Bold colors and graphics make the GG Elite stand out. The Gold Glove also incorporates flashy styles popular with younger players. Heart of Hide and Pro Preferred have more subtle, classic looks.
The GG Elite sits at a premium price point given its pro-grade materials and construction. The Gold Glove offers good value at a lower price tier. Heart of Hide and Pro Preferred cost a bit more than the GG Elite.
With game-ready leather, the GG Elite breaks in very quickly. The Gold Glove also breaks in faster thanks to softer leather. Heart of Hide and Pro Preferred require a longer break-in period.
Supple leathers and durable laces give the GG Elite and Pro Preferred exceptional longevity. The Gold Glove should also last through seasons of youth play. Heart of Hide leathers tend to soften and stretch over time.
While the Gold Glove line offers a solid value for developing players, the GG Elite stands apart with its professional-grade construction, materials, and performance. For youth players ready to take their skills to the elite level, the GG Elite is the top choice to gain confidence and consistency at any position.
Some other factors to consider when choosing between Rawlings youth glove models:
- Position played – Pitchers may prefer Heart of Hide or Pro Preferred for elite performance. Infielders can benefit from the GG Elite’s quick break-in.
- Playing frequency – Those playing year-round need the GG Elite’s durability.
- Age and skill level – Advanced players need the GG Elite’s pro patterns. Gold Glove suits newer recreational players.
- Hand size – Pro Preferred comes in more sizes to fit different hand sizes.
- Budget – GG Elite provides premium quality at a moderate price point compared to top-tier pro models.
While the GG Elite stands out as Rawlings’ premier youth glove, every model has its strengths. Consider your player’s age, skill level, and position along with your budget to select the ideal glove to take their game to the next level.
Key Factors When Selecting a Glove Size for Your Child
Choosing the right size glove is crucial for young players. A proper fitting glove makes fielding easier and allows kids to play with confidence. When shopping for your child’s first glove or upsizing as they grow, consider these key factors:
The most important factor is accurately measuring your child’s hand size. Have them spread their hand out flat and measure from the top of the index finger to the base of the palm. Compare this measurement to size charts from major brands like Rawlings and Wilson to determine the best fit. Go a little bigger to allow room for growth.
Infielders can handle smaller gloves, generally 11-12.5 inches depending on age. Outfielders need larger gloves, 12.5-13 inches, to cover more ground. Pitchers and catchers do well with 11.5-12.5 inches for versatility. Consider your child’s main position when narrowing down sizes.
Age and Skill Level
Younger recreational players, age 5-8, often use smaller gloves, 9-11 inches. More serious players aged 9-12 go larger, 11-12.5 inches. Older kids playing travel ball prefer adult-sized gloves up to 13 inches. Skill level dictates how much hand protection is needed.
Frequency of Play
Kids playing year-round and high-volume games need higher quality, durable gloves that require less frequent replacement. Those playing casually or seasonally can use more affordable gloves sized a bit larger to maximize longevity.
Consider how quickly your child is growing when selecting size. Kids hitting growth spurts will need their gloves replaced more often. Size up if they are growing rapidly to gain extra months of use before upsizing again.
Hand and Finger Injuries
Past injuries can impact fit. Broken fingers may need extra space and padding. Pitchers with sore hands may prefer gloves with greater shock absorption. Adjust size to allow for tender areas.
Glove Models and Brands
Sizing varies across brands and models. Try on different gloves to get the right feel, as some run large or small. Know if a model fits true to size or requires sizing up or down.
A few tips when measuring your player’s hand:
- Use a soft measuring tape for accuracy.
- Measure the throwing hand (non-glove hand).
- Measure palm width as well – important for finding the right pocket size.
- Re-measure every 6 months as kids grow.
With the right fit, a glove becomes an extension of your young player’s hand, boosting confidence on the field. Remember that gloves can be broken in over time so don’t size up too much. With careful measurement and consideration of your child’s needs, you can ensure you select a glove that provides the perfect fit for seasons of peak performance.
Getting the Right Fit: Ways to Ensure Proper Break-In of a Rawlings Gold Glove Baseball Glove
As a parent looking to buy your kid their first high-quality baseball glove, the Rawlings Gold Glove Elite Youth series is an excellent choice. Rawlings has been crafting quality leather gloves for over 100 years, and their Gold Glove line represents the pinnacle of their craftsmanship. However, while these gloves come partially broken-in from the factory, they still require a proper break-in period to achieve that Custom Fit feel that serious ball players desire.
Breaking in a new glove properly not only helps it form to your child’s hand faster, but extends the life of the glove as well. The right break-in routine molds the pocket exactly how your kid wants it, while keeping the leather supple and avoiding stiffness or cracking down the road. Here are some tips to make sure you break-in your young ballplayer’s Rawlings Gold Glove Elite Youth model correctly.
Start Off Right Out of the Box
Before you even think about playing catch or conditioning the leather, make sure the fit is right from the get-go. When you first take the glove out of the box, insert your child’s throwing hand all the way into the pocket, making sure their fingertips reach the end while their palm fills out the pocket. The wrist opening should be snug enough to keep the glove secure, but not tight enough to constrict movement.
If the glove is too loose, it can slide around and cause your kid to lose control of the ball. Too tight, and it will never break-in properly around their hand. Have them grip a ball through the glove to test the initial fit. The fingertips should just peek over the edge of the pocket when gripping a ball. If not, you may need to exchange for a different size.
Mold the Pocket with a Ball
Now that the size is right, it’s time to start shaping that stiff leather. One of the easiest ways to break-in a new baseball glove is simply inserting a ball into the pocket, then wrapping the glove with a wide rubber band or bungee cord to hold it in place. A regulation size baseball is best for infielder gloves, while a softball can work better for larger outfielder mitts.
Leave the ball in the pocket as much as possible, even overnight while they sleep. The constant pressure from the inside will begin forming the shape of the pocket while softening the leather. Make sure to remove the ball occasionally to allow the interior lining to dry out and prevent mildew.
Employ the Heat and Steam Method
Applying moist heat is another time-tested way to break-in the stiff materials faster. One easy method is to put on the glove, then place a towel soaked in hot water over the pocket. Wrap your hand around a hair dryer, set it to high heat, and direct the steam through the towel onto the pocket for 2-3 minutes at a time.
The combination of heat and moisture helps soften up the leather. Just be sure to keep the hair dryer moving and avoid prolonged excessive heat, which can damage the glove. Let it fully dry between steam sessions to prevent moisture damage. This steaming method also sanitizes and deodorizes the inside of the glove in the process.
Use Glove Conditioners and Oil Treatments
Regularly applying glove conditioners and oils during the break-in process ensures the leather stays supple and conditioned while avoiding drying and stiffening. Quality glove conditioners contain natural ingredients like coconut, mink, or neatsfoot oil to penetrate and soften the leather fibers.
Work the conditioner into the pocket, wrist openings, and laces frequently while working the glove over the ball. Conditioning oils can darken the leather temporarily, but this is normal. Over time the oils get absorbed, letting the leather breathe while remaining pliable.
Play Catch Often with a Partner
Perhaps the most traditional and effective break-in method is simply playing frequent games of catch with the new glove. The act of continually pounding a ball into the pocket while squeezing catches simulates real gameplay and conforms the shape exactly how your kid needs it. Start close, with soft tosses from no more than 10-15 feet apart, then slowly move back as the glove starts feeling more comfortable.
Make sure to pound the pocket all over, not just in the main sweet spot. Focus on soft catches to flex the leather rather than hard impacts. If the glove starts feeling stiff again, add more conditioner. With consistent catch sessions, the glove will form to your child’s hand in no time.
Practice Proper Glove Maintenance Habits
Once the glove is broken-in, make sure your young fielder maintains it properly to get the most life out of their prized possession. Keep applying conditioner regularly to avoid stiffness and drying. Store the glove with a ball in the pocket to hold its shape. Avoid leaving it in excessive heat or moisture, and clean out dirt and debris frequently.
With some diligent care and effort working that stiff new leather, you can break-in a Rawlings Gold Glove Elite Youth model to game-ready softness in no time. Just be patient and keep at the routine until your young ballplayer gets that customized fit dialed in. Before you know it, they’ll be flashing the leather and robbing base hits like their favorite Gold Glove winners in the big leagues.
High Quality Leathers Used in GG Elite Gloves
If you’re a baseball or softball parent, you may be considering buying your aspiring young player a new glove. And if you want to get them a high quality glove that will really help improve their game, you probably have your eye on a Rawlings Gold Glove. This iconic glove has been worn by countless professional players over the years. But with different versions like the GG Elite now available, you may be wondering what exactly sets these gloves apart.
At the heart of any great glove, and especially the Rawlings Gold Glove line, is the leather used. Simply put, not all leather is created equal when it comes to durability, feel, and performance. Rawlings sources only the best leathers for their gloves, with the GG Elite models featuring pro-quality leathers normally reserved for MLB players.
For instance, some GG Elite models utilize specially-tanned pro-preferred leather crafted in the Rawlings factory in the Philippines. This leather offers unmatched structure, durability, and break-in time right out of the box. Other models may feature Japanese Kip leather, known for its unbeatable softness yet sturdy feel. Or exotic leathers like Kangaroo can be found on elite models, offering lightning-quick break-in times.
The time-tested Heart of the Hide leather remains a staple as well. This leather offers the ideal combination of stiffness for support and softness for feel. HOH leather is meticulously crafted using proprietary tanning methods to create a durable pocket and supple palm areas. This gives young players that “true pro glove” feel they dream about.
Rawlings doesn’t cut corners when choosing the right leathers for each Gold Glove model. For example, smaller gloves designed for little league players may utilize softer, thinner leathers for easier closing and control. Youth outfielder gloves feature firmer, thicker leathers for support and durability when catching fly balls. And pitcher’s gloves are crafted with sturdy palm leather and flexible finger slots for optimum performance.
Even the lacing holding the glove together is specially crafted, using the strongest and most durable laces available. Rawlings coats the laces with wax for weather resistance. This ensures the glove stays intact season after season.
All these high quality leathers deliver vital benefits for young players. Superior feel and flexibility allow for quicker break-in times so players can maximize their performance right when they need it. And long-lasting durability ensures years of reliable use, even under the extreme demands of youth baseball and softball.
Premium Craftsmanship and Construction
Of course, it takes more than just great leather to make an exceptional glove. Optimal construction and craftsmanship is crucial for bringing together all the raw materials into a glove athletes can depend on.
Rawlings maintains strict quality control and craftsmanship standards for all their gloves. Gloves are meticulously inspected throughout the manufacturing process to check for proper pocket depth, finger slot spacing, web tightness, and more. This ensures every glove meets the Rawlings fit and performance criteria before leaving the factory.
The GG Elite line represents Rawlings’ finest craftsmanship dedicated to young players. Experienced technicians hand-assemble each glove in the factory. They leverage their expertise to provide the optimal shape, feel, and performance tailored specifically to youth athletes. This personal attention to detail ensures each glove meets the elite standards the next generation of ball players demand.
Rawlings continues to innovate new technologies and advancements to improve glove construction as well. This includes their patented Dual Core and 3D wrist lining technologies. Dual Core uses two layers of leather in the palm area, providing ideal structure and flex. 3D wrist lining molds to the shape of the athlete’s wrist for a more customized and comfortable fit.
Young athletes can be hard on their gloves, so durability is a prime consideration. Rawlings reinforces high stress areas on the gloves with extra layers of leather or rugged pro-spec lacing. Youth gloves feature smaller hand openings and finger slots tightened closer together for a more secure fit. Web adjustments, padded thumb loops, and other features also help the gloves withstand seasons of youth play.
All these construction and design elements come together to provide an optimal glove perfectly tailored to elite youth players. From little league to high school and beyond, young athletes can feel confident knowing their Rawlings glove will hold up to all the demands of practice and game-time play.
A Glove Worth Investing In
There’s no doubt premium gloves like the Rawlings Gold Glove Elite come with a higher price tag. But many parents find the investment well worth it knowing they are providing their child with a high quality piece of sports equipment.
The top grade leathers and pro-level construction simply outmatch cheaper gloves in terms of durability, performance, and longevity. That means you won’t have to replace an inferior glove after one or two seasons of youth ball. A Gold Glove has the materials and craftsmanship to last through seasons of practices, games, and memories.
Additionally, a pro-style glove not only performs better, but can help elevate your child’s game. The optimal shape, pocket stiffness, and quick break-in time let young athletes make plays right away that cheap gloves just can’t provide. As their skills improve, your child will appreciate the high-end features helping take their play to the next level.
There’s also the pride and excitement factor of owning a glove actually used by the pros. Young players get motivated seeing their gear mirrored on the fields of MLB, softball and colleges. The iconic Gold Glove name carries prestige and reputation unmatched by generic sporting good brands.
As a final bonus, Rawlings gloves have excellent resale and trade-in value should your child eventually outgrow the glove. The durability ensures plenty of life left for another young player. So you can recoup some of the investment by passing it along to other aspiring athletes.
In the end, a glove purchase represents an investment in your child’s athletic passion. By choosing a high quality, pro-level glove that will last through seasons of play, you invest in memories, skills development, and excitement for America’s pastime.
Here is a continuation of the 1000+ word article on buying a Rawlings Gold Glove for your kid:
Impressive Craftsmanship and Durability
When investing in a high quality glove for your young ballplayer, you want something that can stand up to the rigors of practices, games, and summer weather. Rawlings Gold Glove gloves are designed and constructed to provide impressive durability and withstand seasons of youth play.
Rawlings starts with premium leathers chosen specifically for strength, structure, and durability. Whether it’s their classic Heart of the Hide leather or specialty treated kipskin, these leathers maintain their shape and performance much longer than cheaper glove options.
The construction of the gloves also contributes to their longevity. Rawlings pays meticulous attention to details like binding the edges, precision shaping the pocket, and tightly lacing the webbing. These elements come together to create a sturdy glove ready for real game action.
The gloves also incorporate innovative features to enhance durability. The Palm Pad protects a vital contact point from abrasion and wear. Thermal Plastic Ulnar Cut reshapes the wrist edge to prevent tearing. Rawlings even individually breaks-in each glove before shipping to extend its life.
For high wear areas, Rawlings doubles up the leather layers. The palm, thumb edge, and finger loops all utilize extra leather reinforcements. Rugged pro-quality laces withstand tugging and stress better than cheaper laces. Rawlings understands where gloves need the most fortifying for hard youth play.
Even seemingly small touches boost durability. Rawlings waxes the glove laces to prevent moisture damage. They use strong polyester thread, not cotton, for seams. Vinyl binding and welting add structure and keep the edges intact. Every detail aims toward extending glove life.
Of course, proper glove maintenance is still important for longevity. Young players should follow some basic practices after each use, like storing it properly, re-shaping the pocket, and keeping it clean and conditioned.
With the right care and the premium Rawlings craftsmanship, a Gold Glove can easily last through seasons of youth league, high school ball, family backyard games, and more. Parents can feel confident the investment in the glove will be one that pays off for years as their child’s baseball or softball journey continues.
Superior Fit and Feel
For any glove to perform at its best, achieving the optimal fit and feel for the young player is crucial. Rawlings obsesses over the minute details and design choices that provide customized fit and response.
It starts with offering different glove patterns tailored specifically to either baseball or softball. Position-specific glove shapes provide the ideal pocket depth, index finger arch, and hand opening for that position.
Size ranges account for different hand sizes at different ages. That means an elementary school shortstop can get a glove meeting their hand size, versus the high school third baseman.
The gloves utilize different palm linings and finger back linings to optimize feel. Soft linings maintain flexibility, while thicker linings promote structure. Based on the model, Rawlings selects the linings to match glove function.
Inside each finger slot, special memory foam molds to the player’s finger shape. This creates a more custom and comfortable fit. For an even more precise fit, Rawlings offers custom glove personalization for an added fee.
Sometimes it’s the smaller details that enhance fit. Rawlings knows that youth and teenager hands sweat more, so they add perforations for cooling airflow. An adjustable wrist closure accommodates different wrist sizes for security.
All these custom elements allow young players to focus on playing their game, not being distracted by an ill-fitting glove. The glove becomes like a natural extension of their hand, forming around it for peak performance.
Of course, the proof lies in how the glove actually feels on the player’s hand. All Rawlings gloves undergo rigorous quality control checks to evaluate break-in time, pocket depth, closure tightness and more. Only gloves meeting the stringent criteria pass inspection.
Players and parents can feel confident that the Gold Glove line represents the pinnacle of precision, customization and quality when it comes to fit and feel for youth players. The focus is on optimizing the glove to the young athlete’s hand, not the other way around. This gives aspiring players an essential tool needed to elevate their game.
Why the GG Elite Excels for Infield Positions
When shopping for the right glove to match your child’s baseball or softball position, you’ll find the Rawlings Gold Glove line offers ideal features for infielders. Whether at first base, second, shortstop or third, GG Elite gloves provide the performance young infielders need.
For starters, Rawlings crafts infielder gloves using stiffer, sturdier leathers. This gives the gloves the structure and durability to handle repeated ground ball impacts. An infielder glove won’t work properly if it loses shape or gets pushed around catching hard hit shots.
The finger slots on infielder gloves have a curved shape to help young players flex their hands and control the ball. The curved fingers help guide the ball smoothly into the pocket for secure grabs and smooth transfers.
For critical reaction time, Rawlings designs GG Elite infielder gloves to offer a quicker break-in time. Players can stick the glove under their mattress overnight to start shaping the pocket to their hand. This gets them game ready faster than cheaper gloves.
The ideal pocket depth and shape ensures young infielders can scoop up grounders of all speeds while allowing quick ball exchange. An infield glove pocket that’s too shallow risks pop outs, while too deep makes swift transfers tough.
Rawlings reinforces high impact areas like the palm heel, edges, and webbing. This added reinforcement becomes important when receiving ball after ball, especially on turf fields. Infielders need a glove built for repeated contact.
For added protection, many GG Elite infielder gloves feature a Palm Pad or even a full wraparound palm to reduce sting. Comfort translates to confidence for youth infielders charging those choppers.
Versatile patterns like the Pro Preferred allow players to better customize pocket shape and break points. As skills improve, players can tweak the glove to their specific needs. And having their name embroidered on it gives that personal pro feel.
Rawlings knows today’s young infielders demand premium performance without sacrificing comfort. So GG Elite gloves balance sturdiness with carefully engineered comfort features. The result is the ultimate combination of control, protection, and quickness.
Outfield Glove Features
Tracking down fly balls in the outfield requires a glove built for the long haul. Fortunately, Rawlings equips Gold Glove outfielder gloves with exactly what young players need to cover the grounds.
It starts with the pocket design. Outfielder gloves feature a deeper, flared pocket. This gives more room to cradle fly balls softly and securely on the run. A skinny, shallow pocket risks balls popping out, especially when sprinting full speed.
The deeper pocket depends on a sturdy, structured leather back that won’t collapse. Rawlings uses firm, durable leathers on GG Elite outfielder gloves to maintain that ideal pocket through seasons of play.
A flared pocket edge facilitates scooping balls on the run versus gloves with a narrower pocket opening. Tracking down gappers and liners requires split second scooping, so that flared design matters.
For full extension, Rawlings outfielder gloves boast longer patterns and extended palm designs. This allows for maximum reach on leaping, diving grabs at the wall or in the gaps. Those few extra inches could be the difference on a spectacular catch.
The index finger on outfielder gloves also extends higher up with more padding for snagging hard liners. Getting stung can cost you the ball, so that protection keeps young outfielders confident.
Durability stands up to repetitive impacts from hitting the ground chasing balls. Sturdy pro-quality laces, binding, and web construction ensure the glove endures season after season.
In short, Rawlings Gold Glove outfielder gloves give developing players the tools to cover more field and make the plays. For outfielders of all skill levels, these features build fundamental skills and confidence needed to excel.
Ideal for Outfielders Looking for Maximum Range
Tracking down fly balls in the vast outfield spaces requires the right glove features to cover all that ground. For aspiring young outfielders, Rawlings Gold Glove gloves deliver the size, shape and performance to stretch their range.
It starts with an overall larger, longer glove pattern to extend the reach. Gold Glove outfielder gloves add precious extra inches on the palm and fingers compared to typical gloves. This edge could make the difference on sinking liners or gappers.
The gloves feature a lower finger arc and shallower pocket for scooping balls out of the air. A deep pocket intended for the infield would inhibit getting under high flies. So Rawlings flattens the pocket for upward extension.
On some models, the little finger features a longer extension called a finger wrap. This extra length allows for full arm extension going for leaping grabs at the wall. No need to hold back.
The index and middle fingers utilize a wider shape and size to snare ball after ball. Less skilled outfielders will appreciate the larger catching surface as they learn proper technique.
By crafting taller webs, Gold Glove outfielder gloves provide more netting between the thumb and fingers. This expanded catching area becomes key for snow cone catches on the run.
In the palm, Rawlings outfield gloves have an open back design to allow for unrestricted wrist flexing and movement. Chasing down gappers requires free range of motion without any binding.
Premium pro-grade leathers offer the ideal blend of lightness for speed yet sturdiness for repeated impact from dives. Comfort motivates outfielders to lay out without fear of injury.
Rawlings even offers larger glove sizes above the typical youth levels. A 12.5″ glove can fit a high schooler’s hand but provide the bigger catching area needed in the outfield.
While learning proper positioning and fundamentals should come first, young outfielders inevitably rely on their glove to cover more ground. With their specialized features, Gold Glove gloves give them the tools to extend their range.
Try It On for the Right Fit
With all the factors involved in choosing the optimal glove, Rawlings recommends trying on different gloves to find the right individual fit for your young player.
Every player’s hand size, shape and preferences differ. So while position and baseball/softball specific gloves serve as a starting point, finding the ideal size, pattern and model involves trial and error.
Players should try gloves on both their dominant hand and off hand to gauge comfort. Break the gloves in properly to feel how the pocket shapes to their hand. Test gloves out during practice to determine what features they like or dislike.
Younger players under age 10 may want to size up to allow for growing hands. But gloves too big can hinder proper technique and feel. Consider how long they will realistically use the glove before replacing it.
Consult with coaches to ensure the right glove for their position and skill level. An elite high school infielder may play best with a pro-style glove versus Little League just starting out.
With Rawlings’ 30-day Playability Guarantee, players can return gloves after breaking them in if they realize a different model would work better. This allows room to experiment without getting stuck with the wrong glove.
In the end, finding the optimal balance of fit, features and performance takes trying out different gloves. But the result will be young players fielding with confidence using the glove tailored specifically for their needs.
Here is a continuation of the 1000+ word article on buying a Rawlings Gold Glove for your kid:
How the GG Elite Can Enhance Your Child’s Fielding Ability
As a baseball/softball parent, you want to provide your child with the best equipment possible to help them succeed. With fielding being so vital, choosing the right glove offers a big opportunity to improve their defensive skills.
Premium gloves like the Rawlings Gold Glove Elite can enhance fielding ability in ways cheaper or incorrect gloves just can’t match. The right features allow young players to make plays more smoothly, cleanly, and confidently.
For starters, minimal break-in time gets youth fielders game ready faster. GG Elite gloves require less shaping by the user to form an ideal pocket. Players can stick it under the mattress overnight and be catching balls in practice right away.
The quick break-in also provides a softer, more flexible feel. Stiff, rigid gloves force players to over-compensate on their technique, leading to poor fundamentals. Softer gloves promote proper hand positioning.
An ideal pocket depth and shape helps young players cleanly scoop up grounders and fly balls. Gloves with improper pocket shapes lead to fumbling, bobbling, and popup balls.
Reinforced palm padding and index finger protection give players confidence to get their glove in front of balls. Stinging through the glove causes hesitation and tentativeness on the field.
Lighter weight models help improve reaction time for those diving stops and quick transfers. Heavier gloves lag behind the pace of play.
A customizable fit via different size options, finger lining, and shape allows for natural glove feel. An improper shape or size leads to unnatural compensation in technique.
Durability stands up to the repeated impacts from balls game after game. Weaker gloves lose shape and structure, affecting performance.
In short, the right glove becomes like an extension of the player’s hand rather than an impediment. Proper fundamentals come naturally rather than struggling against the glove.
While price represents an investment, parents should consider the value of improved confidence, fewer errors, and more fun playing defense. That makes the Gold Glove Elite well worth it.
Be Patient Learning Proper Break-in
While advanced GG Elite leather requires less break-in out of the box, parents must still teach their child proper techniques for breaking in a new glove for peak performance.
It starts with gently massaging leather conditioner into the glove, especially the pocket, to soften the materials. Wool mallet pounding closes the pocket while ball pocket pounding shapes it.
Players should gradually work the glove, opening and closing it repeatedly to limber it up. Closing it around a ball at night quickens the break-in process.
During break-in, avoid over-oiling the glove as that can break down the leather over time. Use heat sparingly to avoid drying out the glove.
Be patient. break-in takes real game use over several weeks to get full pliability. Proper break-in leads to years of ideal shape and performance.
A correctly broken-in GG Elite glove forms precisely to your child’s hand. The pocket shapes to their specific catching style and position. Taking time upfront creates a custom tool tailored to them.
Parents can teach the nuances of break-in to give their child an advantage right from the start. A little patience goes a long way toward fielding success down the road.
Tips for Proper Care and Maintenance
If you’re thinking of buying a Rawlings Gold Glove baseball glove for your kid, you’ve made an excellent choice. The Rawlings GG Elite series is designed specifically for youth players and offers pro-level quality and performance. However, like any high-quality leather glove, proper care and maintenance is essential to ensure your kid’s Gold Glove lasts for many seasons of play.
Here are some tips to help keep your kid’s Rawlings GG Elite glove in prime playing condition:
Breaking In the Glove
A new Rawlings Gold Glove will be quite stiff right out of the package. It needs to be slowly worked in to soften the leather and allow it to conform to your child’s hand. Have your kid gently pound a ball into the pocket and squeeze the glove repeatedly to start this process. During practice and games, encourage them to keep the glove on their hand in between innings to hasten the break-in time. Use a high-quality glove conditioner to keep the leather supple. With consistent use and conditioning, a GG Elite glove should be nicely broken in after a few weeks.
Cleaning and Conditioning
After games and practices, your kid should wipe down the glove with a clean, damp cloth to remove dirt and debris. Allow it to fully air dry. Once it’s dry, apply a thin layer of high-quality leather conditioner. Rawlings recommends using their Glovolium or Softee Sheen products. Rub it in well, focusing on the palm and other high-wear areas. Conditioning the glove regularly (every couple weeks or more often with heavy use) will help the glove retain its shape and prevent the leather from drying out and cracking.
Storing the Glove
When not in use, the glove should be stored properly to maintain its shape and keep the leather supple. An ideal way is to tightly wrap a ball in the pocket and secure it with a wide rubber band. You can also stuff the pocket with newspaper or a glove ball. Either way, this helps prevent the leather from sagging. Before storing for a prolonged period (like over the winter), clean and condition the glove well. Keep it in a cool, dry place away from direct heat or sunlight.
With proper care, a Rawlings Gold Glove can last several seasons. But certain practices can shorten its lifespan. Discourage your kid from leaving their glove out on the field when not in use. The sun and weather elements will quickly dry out and crack the leather. Dirt and debris can also grind into the palm, so remind them to stash it safely in the dugout. Don’t allow them to over-oil the glove, as this can break down the inner lining over time. And of course, make sure they don’t abuse the glove by slamming it on the ground, spikes, or anything else!
Relacing the Glove
No matter how well you care for it, the laces on your kid’s GG Elite will eventually wear out and need replacing. This is simple enough to do at home. You’ll need high-quality rawhide laces, often sold by the spool at sports stores. Carefully remove the old laces and use a lacing needle to thread the new ones back through the holes. Crisscross them through the web as directed by the lacing pattern on the glove. Pull each lace tight so that the web is snug but not overly stiff. Singe the lace ends with a lighter and knot them off so they don’t unravel. Fresh laces will make the glove look and perform like new.
When to Retire the Glove
With consistent use and care, a Rawlings GG Elite glove should last at least 2-3 seasons before needing retirement. You’ll know it’s time to replace it when the pocket gets overly soft or floppy and lacks shape retention. Cracking or rips in the leather that can’t be repaired are also signs it’s due for replacement. The good news is that your kid can move on to a new GG Elite and continue enjoying Rawlings’ top-notch youth gloves for years to come!
Investing in a quality Rawlings baseball glove is wise, but keeping it in optimal shape is just as important. Follow these glove care tips, and your kid’s Gold Glove should deliver season after season of flawless performance. With a little maintenance, it will become a trusty companion on the diamond and create memories that will last a lifetime.
Affordable Pricing Compared to Other Premium Gloves
When considering buying a new baseball glove for your child, the Rawlings Gold Glove line offers an excellent balance of quality and affordability. Rawlings GG Elite gloves provide pro-level performance at a price point that’s easier on the wallet than many competing premium gloves.
For young players serious about honing their defensive skills, the right glove can make a big difference. You want something durable yet flexible, with a contoured fit and responsive feel. Leather quality is also key – you need leather that’s game-ready right off the shelf, yet still capable of forming to your child’s hand over time.
Premium gloves from iconic brands like Wilson, Nokona, and Mizuno can run $250-$500 for youth models. But Rawlings has found a way to deliver that same elite-level quality at a more budget-friendly price. Here’s how the Rawlings GG Elite stacks up cost-wise against some of the other top glove brands on the market:
Arguably the most famous baseball glove ever made, the Wilson A2000 is a perennial favorite among pros. But that famous name comes at a price – expect to pay $260-$400 for a youth model. The A2000 definitely provides a great fit and feel, but dollar-for-dollar, the Rawlings GG Elite delivers comparable quality for less.
Handcrafted in America since 1934, Nokona is renowned for their top-grain steerhide leather. Their youth Alpha series runs $250-$350 per glove, and many MLB players wear Nokonas. However, for a glove with similar pro-level performance, you can get a GG Elite for $50-$100 less.
Another instantly recognizable baseball name, Mizuno crafts their gloves from exclusive Japanese Kip leather. Their youth Pro gloves retail for $200-$300. Again, you’re paying somewhat of a premium for the brand name, as a GG Elite glove provides similar quality at a more affordable price point.
Akadema Prodigy Series
Relative newcomer Akadema has made a name for themselves crafting pro-quality gloves at reasonable prices. Their youth Prodigy gloves cost $80-$150 – an excellent value. However, for just a bit more money, the Rawlings GG Elite provides a noticeable step up in materials and construction quality from Akadema’s budget-minded gloves.
As you can see, the Rawlings GG Elite line manages to bridge the gap nicely between price and performance. The MSRP of $80-$200 per glove makes them competitively priced with discount brands like Akadema, yet they offer premium quality on par with the “big boys” like Wilson and Mizuno. For budget-conscious parents seeking a high-end glove without the sticker shock, the GG Elite hits a real sweet spot.
And Rawlings isn’t skimping on materials to achieve these savings. GG Elite gloves are expertly crafted from top-grain leather and feature pro-preferred lacing, patterns, and shapes. They’re lined with soft Cambria fabric for comfort and equipped with the Rawlings RCS palm pad to reduce sting. Simply put, they offer everything you want in a premium glove at a family-friendly cost.
Less expensive big box store gloves may seem tempting at first glance, but their cheaper nylon/vinyl construction can’t match the feel and performance of a real leather glove. And low-end gloves often lose their shape quickly, while a GG Elite will maintain its precise pocket and contours season after season. Investing a bit more up front in a GG Elite will save you money in the long run while providing a much better experience for young players.
With its smart value pricing, Rawlings manages to place the GG Elite series within reach of most families’ budgets. And with proper care, a GG Elite glove should last through several seasons of youth and high school baseball. So you end up saving money in the long run while avoiding the “budget glove blues”.
For parents seeking high quality, great value, and trusted reliability, the Rawlings GG Elite rises above the competition. Their ideal blend of premium materials, precision craftsmanship, and affordable pricing makes them a perfect choice for serious young ballplayers who want a pro-level glove that will boost their confidence and improve their defensive skills.
Thinking of Buying a Rawlings Gold Glove for Your Kid? Here’s What You Should Know:
If you’re a baseball parent looking to buy your aspiring young infielder or outfielder their first high quality glove, you may have come across the iconic Rawlings Gold Glove line. With its signature gold patch and premium leather construction, the Rawlings Gold Glove has been the choice of countless Major League pros for generations. But how do you know if it’s the right glove for your youth player? Here are some key things to consider when shopping for a Rawlings Gold Glove elite youth model.
Popular Color and Design Options to Choose From
One of the great things about Rawlings Gold Glove gloves is that they come in a wide range of colors and designs these days beyond the classic all-brown leather models. You can find black, blonde, blue, red, orange, and other fun colors to match your kid’s personal style. There are also different web designs like the closed H-web or the open I-web. This variety allows you to choose a glove that will not only perform well, but that your child will be excited to use and show off on the field. Consider involving your kid in picking out their preferred color scheme.
High Quality Leather and Construction
Of course, performance is also key when selecting a youth glove. The Rawlings Gold Glove line utilizes premium steerhide leather that is pro-grade quality. It will be sturdy yet flexible right off the shelf, allowing for quick break-in compared to lower tier gloves. Rawlings also uses advanced lacing and embroidering techniques on their Gold Glove models to ensure durability and shape retention. You’ll be getting a glove built to last multiple seasons of youth ballgames.
Position-Specific Fit and Feel
It’s important to pay attention to position-specific features when shopping for a Rawlings youth Gold Glove. For infielders, smaller gloves with shallow pockets will allow for quicker ball transfers and throws. For outfielders, larger and deeper gloves are needed to secure fly balls on the run. Rawlings offers Gold Glove models tailored for each position. Be sure to consult the sizing guide and product details to match the right glove to your child’s defensive position. Getting the proper fit will boost their confidence and success in the field.
Price Points to Fit Every Budget
There’s no denying that Rawlings Gold Glove models sit at the higher end of the glove price spectrum given their pro-level quality. However, Rawlings does offer different product tiers within the Gold Glove line to fit different budgets. The top-of-the-line “Heart of the Hide” models provide the absolute finest materials and craftsmanship with corresponding premium pricing. The “Pro Preferred” and “Select” lines offer excellent quality and performance at slightly more affordable prices. And for value-focused shoppers, the “Gold Glove Elite Youth” models provide high quality full-grain leather and pro patterns at lower costs. With a bit of comparison shopping, you can likely find a Rawlings Gold Glove at a price that works for your family’s budget.
Try It On First for Best Fit
Like buying shoes, the best way to find the right baseball glove is to try some on. If possible, take your player to a sporting goods store and have them slip on some different Rawlings youth Gold Glove models to get a true sense of fit and feel. Your local baseball specialty store will likely have some in stock. See how the glove closes, if they can reach the pocket for their position, and if the size/weight feels comfortable on their hand. Ordering a glove sight unseen can be risky in getting the proper size. Always best to test out some options in person first before purchasing if you can.
Don’t Forget the Break-In Period
Keep in mind that all new gloves, including Gold Glove models, will need some break-in time before they are game-ready. Expect your kid’s new Rawlings glove to be quite stiff at first. They will need to put in some work pounding the pocket and working the leather before it softens up. You can help speed up the process with some conditioning treatments. But also advise your young player to be patient as the glove gradually molds to their hand over time. The effort will be well worth it to gain a perfectly broken-in Gold Glove that will perform and last for many seasons. Just anticipate some elbow grease on the front end.
Prioritize Quality Over Position
When deciding where to allocate budget for your young ballplayer’s gear, consider investing more upfront in a higher quality glove over a bat or other equipment. A top-notch glove appropriate for their position can be used for many years as kids grow. And a solid glove will provide more day-to-day value enhancing defensive play versus incremental improvements in bats. Since you’ll likely use the glove for multiple seasons, the upfront investment will pay off in the long run. Going with a premium Rawlings Gold Glove now can be money well spent.
Finding the right baseball glove for your aspiring youth infielder or outfielder is an exciting part of their baseball journey. With its classic pro-style design, premium materials and construction, and range of custom options, the Rawlings Gold Glove line is a top choice to consider for many parents. Keep these key factors in mind as you shop for the perfect model to match your kid’s needs and get them off to a golden start on defense!
Thinking of Buying a Rawlings Gold Glove for Your Kid? Here’s What You Should Know:
As a baseball parent, you want to get your aspiring young player the best equipment to help them succeed. And for many, that means getting them their first true high quality glove like the iconic Rawlings Gold Glove. But with so many retailers and models out there, how do you ensure you’re buying an authentic Rawlings Gold Glove Elite youth glove? Here are some tips on where to shop to find the real deal.
Where to Buy an Authentic Rawlings GG Elite Glove
With Rawlings Gold Glove gloves being so popular, you have to be careful about counterfeits floating around online and in discount stores. To guarantee you’re getting a legit Rawlings youth glove, consider these safe shopping options:
The obvious place to start is directly from the source – Rawlings’ own website. Here you can browse the full product catalogs across all model lines knowing everything is 100% authentic. Rawlings runs deals and discounts frequently, so you may be able to score a bargain. And their customer service can walk you through sizing and product questions. The only downside is you won’t get to try the glove on in person before buying.
Local Sporting Goods Stores
Major sporting goods chains like Dick’s, Academy, and Modell’s carry Rawlings gear including the Gold Glove line. Trying gloves on is ideal, so visit your local store to check out options in person. Plus, store staff can provide knowledgeable recommendations. Selection may be limited to only top-selling models however. And prices are often full retail.
Baseball Specialty Shops
For the best in-person selection and expertise, visit a dedicated baseball pro shop if one is nearby. These specialty retailers carry a wide range of Rawlings gloves including youth Gold Glove models. Their staff will take the time to properly size your child’s hand and suggest ideal gloves. Although pricing may be on the higher side, the full service experience can be worthwhile.
Reputable Online Retailers
If you need specialty sizing or prefer more options, buying online can work if you use trusted sites. Retailers like Baseball Monkey, Baseball Express, and JustBats are safe online choices with wide Rawlings selections, easy returns, and price matching. Read product info closely to match the right glove model to your player’s age and position.
Authorized Resellers on Marketplaces
Major ecommerce sites like Amazon, eBay, and Walmart offer convenience for finding deals. But be wary of unauthorized third-party sellers here. Vet listings carefully and only buy from Rawlings authorized resellers on these marketplaces to ensure authenticity. Also confirm generous return policies in case the fit is off.
Used Glove Market on Social
For major savings, join used gear groups on Facebook or local parenting forums. Gently used Rawlings youth gloves pop up often as kids outgrow them. This option takes effort to monitor listings and meet up for exchanges. But you can potentially grab a quality used Gold Glove at a fraction of retail cost. Be sure to closely inspect condition before purchasing.
Rawlings Outlet Store
If located near one of their outlet locations in Alabama, Missouri, or Ontario, you can get discounted deals on overstocked gloves and last season’s designs. Call ahead to check their youth glove inventory, then visit to dig through their stock in person if possible. An outlet store is like a treasure hunt for marked down gems!
Proceed With Caution on Unknown Sites
Beware of any ecommerce sites you’re unfamiliar with that appear to have too-good-to-be-true pricing on Rawlings gloves. Trust your gut, do your homework on them, and look for signs of legitimacy before buying. Unknown retailers peddling cheap Rawlings gear are likely too risky. Better to stick with reputable sellers you can trust.
While it takes a bit more diligence, there are avenues to buy authentic Rawlings Gold Glove youth gloves across a range of budgets. Do your homework to find trusted retailers and authorized sellers either locally or online. Take time to inspect any glove carefully before purchasing. With a discerning eye and some deal hunting, you can score your aspiring young ballplayer a real Rawlings Gold Glove to take their defense up a notch this season!
Now that you know where to start your search, here are some other tips for picking the best Rawlings Gold Glove for your youth player’s needs and budget…
Thinking of Buying a Rawlings Gold Glove for Your Kid? Here’s What You Should Know:
As a baseball parent, you want to give your child every opportunity to excel on the field. And one way to help give them a competitive edge is by getting them a pro-quality glove like the Rawlings Gold Glove Elite. Here’s how this iconic glove can boost their defensive skills and confidence.
Give Your Child the Competitive Edge with a GG Elite
When you see your child struggling to catch routine fly balls or having balls pop out of their flimsy glove, it becomes obvious that an equipment upgrade is needed. A Rawlings Gold Glove Elite model can provide key advantages to improve their fielding game:
The Rawlings Gold Glove line utilizes premium steerhide leather, pro-grade lacing, and quality craftsmanship throughout. This is the same glove worn by MLB stars, shaped into ideal youth sizes. The sturdy construction better secures caught balls in the pocket versus lower quality gloves.
Ideal Break-In and Shape Retention
The high quality leather on a Gold Glove Elite breaks in faster than typical gloves. Your child won’t have to wait as long to feel comfortable wearing it. The shape also holds over time so the glove maintains proper pocket depth and closure. Cheap gloves tend to get saggy and floppy with use.
Various Size and Web Options
Having the properly fitted glove for your child’s hand size and defensive position gives them an advantage in the field. The Gold Glove line comes in specific youth sizes and popular web shapes like closed, I-web, modified trapeze, and more. The right fit means less fumbling of balls.
Flashy Pro Styling
Kids love the flashy pro look of the Rawlings Gold Glove models. Being able to pick their favorite colors and designs gets them excited to use their new glove. The iconic gold patch gives it major league flair too. Having gear they’re proud to sport builds defensive confidence.
Performance Inspiring Quality
Simply having a glove worn by the pros can inspire better fielding performance. The Gold Glove Elite cues your child’s brain that this is a serious glove for making plays like the big leaguers. Quality gear subconsciously motivates hustle and focus. Believing they have an edge sparks effort.
Longer Lasting Durability
The premium construction also means the glove will last your child several seasons before needing replacement. The money invested upfront goes further over time versus having to buy cheaper gloves year after year as they break down. Your child can take pride in their long-term glove.
Improved Defensive Technique
A high performing glove like the Gold Glove Elite reinforces proper defensive form and technique. The glove works optimally when used correctly, forcing your child to employ proper hand positioning, footwork, and ball handling. A quality glove develops muscle memory.
Elevates Team Play
By individually elevating your child’s defense, their improved play also boosts the overall team’s performance. Their Web Gem catches and error-free handling of balls inspires teammates to raise their game. Everybody wants the cool glove that makes great plays. Enhanced defense is contagious.
Of course, a fancy glove alone won’t magically make your child a better fielder overnight. Proper coaching and practice still come first. But equipping them with a high performance Rawlings Gold Glove Elite model can give them an undeniable edge over the competition. Their glove shouldn’t be what holds them back from making the highlight reel play. Give your aspiring youth infielder or outfielder every advantage this season and put them in a Rawlings Gold Glove!
Now let’s explore some specific Rawlings glove models and features to consider when shopping for your child…