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Resource Guide | How to Care for Your Glove

How to Care for Your Glove

It can be easy to just throw your glove into your bat bag at the end of each season and forget all about it until you need it again. But you could be costing yourself years of use by doing so. Instead, follow our simple tips to the perfect glove care.

You will certainly want to run routine maintenance on your glove at least once a season. A tune-up involves tightening the laces in the fingers and web; re-tying any loose knots and cleaning, conditioning and shaping the glove. If you find torn seams, split leather, or broken laces, be sure to have them repaired as quickly as possible. Playing with a damaged glove can damage the glove further and even cause errors. The off-season is also a good time to have the glove professionally re-laced if need be. Several companies offer this work in addition to complete rebuilding and repair services.

At the end of the season, you can take a moderate amount of petroleum jelly, and cover the outside and inside of the glove. Don't ignore the laces or hard-to-get-to areas, both inside and outside the glove. Then take a clean rag and wipe off excess to remove grit and grime. This will also remove and help neutralize much of the salt and acid buildup inside the glove caused by perspiration, a chief problem to the leather lining, usually made of softer leather.

Glove Care Tips

  • Always store your glove in a dry space.
  • At the end of the season, lightly apply glove oil to keep your glove from becoming brittle or drying out.
  • Too much oil will cause your glove to become heavy and may even lead to damage.
  • Use a sponge or old rag/towel to apply about a dime-sized amount of oil to the leather.
  • Always allow 24 hours for the leather to absorb a coat of oil before applying any additional oil.
  • If your glove does become wet, let it naturally dry before applying and glove condition or oils.
  • Run routine maintenance to your glove at least once a season.
  • Clean your glove of any foreign substances that may harm the leather.
  • If any tears or rips become apparent, make sure to have your glove professionally assessed.
  • Think about wearing a batting glove to protect the inner lining from any sweat or acid build-up.

A properly cared for quality glove will perform for many seasons. Improper handling, cleaning, adjusting and, in particular, over oiling can shorten the life expectancy and enjoyment you will receive from your baseball glove. The most important part of caring for your glove is to recognize that leather will deteriorate if subjected to repeated exposure to moisture and heat (i.e., the sweat from your hand and the warmth of the interior of the trunk of your car). Saliva will also result in damaged leather, so refrain from ever spitting into the palm of your glove.

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