In the last 30 years, baseball and fastpitch have been blessed to see some incredible outfield defense get displayed on their biggest stages. The greatest defender to ever roam MLB outfields came in the 1990s in the form of Andruw Jones. And since he retired, outfielders like Kevin Kiermaier and Lorenzo Cain have kept up the high standard of safeguarding the big green ocean. And on the fastpitch front, we’ve seen highlight reel catches from players like former LSU star AJ Andrews and her younger sister and Aliyah Andrews.
And why have we seen such impressive outfield defense since the arrival of the 1990s? In this writer’s opinion, there can only be 1 answer: The Glove.
The modern outfield glove is lengthy and able to tightly secure a ball even when jostled around during a diving catch. In an era where we can more accurately measure defensive performance, it has become extremely important for fastpitch and baseball defenders to have the correct glove when heading out to roam the cavernous outfields on amateur ball fields. Because of that, our team of Glove Experts has put together this comprehensive list of 9 gloves that we believe outfielders must consider for use during 2023. Enjoy!
BEST BASEBALL OUTFIELD GLOVES
Wilson A2K SuperSkin MB50 Mookie Betts 12.5" Baseball Glove (WBW101012125)
Although he hasn’t broken into the “best defensive outfielder of all time” conversation just yet, Mookie Betts might cement himself into that discourse within the next few years. He has an absolute cannon for an arm and if a baseball is in the air in the right field of Dodger Stadium, it’s probably going to get pulled down by Mookie's outfield glove. This beautiful Wilson A2K is 12.75 inches in length and Mookie's glove of choice when he takes to the big green ocean (a.k.a. the outfield). The beauty of it is created by the full SuperSkin backing that comes in blue and white colors. If you’re playing outfield on a team with colors that look anything close to the LA Dodgers, then you need to get this glove.
Top Glove Features
- Pro Stock Select Leather Is The Best Leather Material From Wilson
- SuperSkin Backing Keeps The Glove Lightweight, Moisture Repellant & Strong
- H-Web Is The Most Popular Web Used By Outfielders
Rawlings Pro Preferred Ronald Acuna Jr. 12.75" Baseball Glove (PROSRA13)
Acuna Jr’s Rawlings Pro Preferred will come in at 12.75 inches. That length has become the most popular for use in the outfield by experienced amateur players (high school and older). To support that 12.75 inch length, Rawlings adds their full-grain kip leather to the glove. It will come as a extra stiff glove, but if you put in the time to get it broken into game-ready shape, you’ll love the final fruits of your labor.
- The RA13 (Ronald Acuna #13) Pattern Provides Ample Pocket Size
- Pittards Sheepskin Leather Lines The Inner Palm & Is Super Comfortable
- Professional Grade Laces Hold Glove Together Exceptionally Well
Wilson A1000 12.5" Baseball Glove (WTA10RB20KP92)
Over the past couple of years, this glove has absolutely blown us away here at JustGloves. This A1000 from Wilson just keeps getting picked up by players and parents looking for a baseball glove that is extra roomy and sold at an incredible price! With it having a 12.5” length, it is going to meet the demands for handling any outfield position. As well, it is going to be made from Wilson’s Full Grain leather which is going to make it a soft glove and easy to break in. You’ll see that this glove checked all of the boxes for our customer below…
“High quality leather, Fairly easy break-in, Balls go in and don’t come out, Great Price!” - JG Customer, Angler
Rawlings Heart of the Hide R2G Kris Bryant 12.25" Baseball Glove (PRORKB17)
Few things in life feel better than getting a 2-for-1 deal. And that includes being able to cover two positions on a baseball field with one glove. This Kris Bryant model made by Rawlings has the ability to do just that.
For Kris, it is used as a 3B glove, but with it being made at the rare 12.25” length and with an H-Web that transfers well between the infield and outfield, this glove should be able to handle both positions. Generally speaking, a glove of this length would be slightly too large for infield play and maybe a little too small for the outfield. But hey, you have to make a few sacrifices if you want to get that elusive 2-for-1.
Best Glove Aspects
- This Heart of the Hide R2G Has A Special Design That Allows Glove To Break In Easier (Only 35% Is Left To Player)
- Comes With A Snug Wrist Fitting That Works For Teens & Adults
- Pro Grade Leather Laces Should Be Long-Lasting
Akadema Precision 13" Baseball Glove (ARZ136)
Akadema might not have the same brand power as Rawlings or Wilson, but they can sure make a high-quality baseball glove. This Precision outfield glove is a testament to Akadema’s glove-making ability. Akadema markets the glove as being made with Kip leather (which is one of the most sought-after glove materials) and then sells it at a remarkably affordable price. And the customers cannot get over the lightweight feel of this lengthy 13” baseball glove…
“This glove is extremely light, has a great pocket and is very easy to break in. It was my first kip leather glove and I am very impressed. - JG Customer, Hawk28
Marucci Oxbow Series 12.5" Baseball Glove (MFGOXM97R3)
If you have a young baseball player who is already specializing in defending the outfield then it may be worth the investment to get him an outfield glove. It certainly seems that the extra reach of an outfield glove has the potential to help outfielders if they are in the beginning stages of their baseball journey. This Marucci Oxbow glove is going to give a young outfielder a youth glove a solid amount of reach with its 12 inch length. However, the hand stall should be conducive to fitting a younger hand.
Three More Reasons To Shop The Oxbow:
- Very Little Break-In Will Be Needed
- M-Type Fit Removes Annoying Thumb And Pinky Loops From The Glove
- Microfiber Wrist Lining On The Inside Of The Glove Should Mold To The Shape Of The Hand With Time
BEST FASTPITCH OUTFIELD GLOVES
Wilson A2000 SuperSkin T125 12.5" Fastpitch Softball Glove (WBW100216125)
Just like in baseball, when you see a fastpitch glove bearing the name “A2000” on it, you can rest assured that you’re dealing with a top quality glove that has been trusted by ball players for many years. This specific model is a glutton for swagger as it features an all-SuperSkin backing and it will also feature the ornate Modified T-Web. We could actually even characterize this glove as a hybrid outfield glove. The 12.5” length can serve both outfielders and infielders. That length will make the glove able to reach outfield fly balls with ease and should still promote quick infield transfers with a softball.
And even though A2000s have typically been considered gloves that require a little more work for a break-in, one customer actually noted the opposite:
“Best glove for a quick break in!!” - JG Customer, Michelle Freeman
Rawlings R9 13" Fastpitch Softball Glove (R9SB130-6G)
This Rawlings R9 checks the box on just about every single expectation that players have for a fastpitch glove:
- Soft and easy to break in…check.
- Able to last multiple seasons…check.
- Reasonably priced…check.
And this H-webbed model will be beloved by outfielders as it is going to be extra lengthy at 13 inches. You’ll be able to crash in on softballs that are flared just over the infielders’ heads and you’ll also be able to run down deep flies.
Shoeless Joe Shoeless Jane 13" Fastpitch Softball Glove (1300FPBW)
It never hurts to have a fastpitch glove that can handle multiple positions and this Shoeless Jane model can do just that. The 13” length will obviously make it an outfield glove as the long length allows you to haul in softballs with more ease in the outfield. But since the glove has a fully closed web, it can also be used within the pitcher’s circle. That closed webbing and longer length will keep the pitcher’s grip concealed and it will also cover the pitcher’s wrist. Therefore, it will be extremely difficult for a pitcher to tip their grip to a batter while using this big fastpitch glove.
Must See Characteristics
- Special Aged Antique Tobacco Leather (Smells Incredible)
- Velcro Wrist Strap Allows For Easy Size Adjustments
- XRD Impact Protection Keeps The Hand Safe During A Catch
If you’ve made it this far then you can consider yourself an expert on outfield gloves during the year 2023. However, there is always more to learn (even for our Glove Experts). If you have more questions about selecting an outfield glove, please reach out at 866-321-4568, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by chatting with one of our Glove Experts right here.