It is only about connection when it comes to a baseball player and his glove. Through every catch, grab and snag, the connection only grows stronger between them both.
Therefore, it is only fair to treat the glove-like it has a life for it to last longer. This article tries to educate on how to take care of your baseball glove.
Benefits of Oiling a Baseball Glove
Only if we could use a baseball glove right away after we get it from the store, life would have been so much easier. The breaking in of the glove is so very crucial that in owning a glove, breaking incorrectly is what makes it worth playing a serious game for the player. The benefits are as follows
You need to oil your baseball glove periodically to make it last longer. If you live in a dry state, it is a must to oil your glove every 1 week or once every month depending on the humidity level of the place. The oil is the food that your glove needs.
What you use is a complete choice of yours. It might, however, leave off the residue of excess oil that you need to clear before your game. It protects your glove from excess moisture content in the atmosphere by waterproofing and it also preserves your precious glove in the long run.
As long as your glove does not a break-in, there is no comfort in playing with your newly bought glove as it would be stiff as a rock and you cannot tame it. It is a must for the glove to be broken in for you to make the most out of it.
To be broken in means to form a pocket to catch fly balls and ground balls with ease. To break in many people prefer using oil, not just any oil but oil recommended by your glove manufacturer. What the oil does is make the leather soft by penetrating the surface of the leather and making it supple.
Keeps the leather alive
Most people apply mineral oil to the glove. Oiling your glove is no less than watering your plants, it keeps the leather of the glove alive by keeping the pores open while also providing a softening condition.
Oiling prevents any damage that can be caused by moisture or water. Thus the oil makes a coating that works as a waterproofing coat which protects the leather.
Precautions While Oiling a Baseball Glove
Gloves do come with oiling instructions by the manufacturer. Only the right product should be used to oil the glove and no other oil or conditioner should be applied as it might damage the exterior of your glove by reacting with the leather.
The right product does not only soften the leather but also clean it and protect it from excess moisture and dirt. Make sure to use products that do not contain excessive chemicals.
Proper application method
Always ensure to apply in the right method whatever product you use. Take enough oil, not too less, not too much and apply it with a piece of soft cloth or cotton swab and gently rub on it. Start in from the palm of the glove and gradually move outwards till it gets soaked. Remove the excess oil and leave it overnight to dry. Repeat this every once in a week or according to what is conceived best by you.
Don’t overdo it
Make sure to only apply the required amount of oil and not overdo it. Excessive oil too can make the leather deteriorate faster. Once the oil is applied, wait till it soaks in before applying any more of it.
Read instructions carefully
Do not forget to read the instructions that come with either the oil or the glove before you start oiling the glove on your own. You do not want to mess with your newly bought glove by being ‘Mr/Miss Know-it-all’.
Every glove has its specific conditions which may vary from glove to glove therefore, it is only a good idea to read the instructions beforehand and only then go ahead with any product to be used.
Keep it away from children
It is a given! Keep it away from children’ is what most products have written in bold on them and that’s there for a reason. Children could be intolerant to many substances which could cause harm.
Until the glove has been rightly softened and oiled and dried, do not let the young ones use them when it has all the products applied to them. And once the oiling is done, keep the bottles away safe from children.
Baseball Glove Oil vs. Conditioner
Both oil and conditioner have the same usage to an extent. However, there still is some difference.
Baseball glove oil
Technically baseball glove oil is a product which is used to break in the glove. It weighs the glove down as it makes it heavier. It is rubbed on and left overnight to be soaked in. It is harder to work with than conditioner as it stays in one spot. Oil also darkens the color of the glove if it is any color other than black.
It is a petroleum jelly-like substance that is also rubbed onto the leather of a baseball glove to help restore its old color and preserve the leather from any further damage. It is also water repellant and does not leave behind a sticky residue. It makes the leather look shiny and soft.
Best Baseball Glove Oil and Conditioners
Wilson Premium Glove Oil
It comes in an easy to use spray applicator that makes it easier to apply where you want it and not where you don’t. It softens the leather and aids in glove break-in.
This glove oil is a compound of neatsfoot and other beneficial oils that makes softening and preserving leather easier. This oil helps stiff or new leather mold into any shape easily which is good for breaking in new gloves. It won’t mess up your glove’s color If you spray it, the part that you just spray will kind of become brownish, but it will soon get back to its original color after you dry it. The spray is a very fine mist and makes oiling gloves not messy at all.
It is not as heavy as other oils and so the glove absorbs just enough oil that is required and not more than that. Because the oil is light, several applications are required. This oil helps to restore dried out leather.
Nokona Athletic Goods Lubrication Treatment
Nokona Athletic goods lubrication treatment is a glove softener and conditioner which is ideal for speeding up break-in period of your glove. It cleans and maintains glove and preserves it through the years.
As the saying goes, less is more, using less of this lubrication formula works just fine. Not too much, not too little, just enough so that it is not saturated and gets heavier or so less that it does not even help recuperate the glove from drying. It keeps your glove in shape for several years.
It promises to not change the color of the glove post-application. It is a petroleum-based lubrication agent which does not have any strong scent or odor.
Wilson Pro Stock Glove Conditioner
It is easy to apply glove conditioner which revitalizes and softens the leather of the glove enhancing its shine and color making it look new. It also restores the natural scent of the leather.
It prolongs the life of your glove and keeps it in great condition for long. It promises to not leave any residue or excess oil. It contains lanolin and Vitamin E.
More than using it for breaking your glove in it can be used for the maintenance of the glove.
How to Oil a Baseball Glove
To oil a baseball glove the first thing you will need is your glove itself. Then, you will need a lubricating or conditioning agent of your choice and a piece of soft cloth, rag r sock to apply the substance on the leather of your glove.
Clean your stored away glove
Before applying any product, take a dry washed cloth and clean your glove by simply wiping it off, off any dust or dirt that might have accumulated there. Once you have dusted it off, your glove is now ready to be worked on.
Take a piece of cloth or sock
Take a piece of cloth or sock or rag and pour some of the oil on it probably like a nickel to quarter size amount and slowly and carefully rub it in on the palm area first.
Then gradually move towards the laces and rub them with the applicator as there are more chances of the laces to break off if they dry out. Therefore put the generous effort in applying the oil-soaked cloth across the entire glove.
Remove the excess oil
The next step is to remove the excess oil that is left as the residue of the oil applied. It must be wiped off as the glove would otherwise feel greasy and if it is saturated with the oil, it will become heavier.
Oil the inside
Now, this is the trickiest part. It is not easy to oil the inside of the glove but it is equally important. What you can do to oil the inside is, apply some oil on all your fingers and palm and gently slide it in the glove. Once you have put it on, move your fingers around a bit inside the glove and voila! The inside has been oiled.
Leave it overnight
This is the final step, once the application of oil is done, leave it overnight to dry. Make sure to oil your glove periodically so that it does not crack out of drying.
Use your oil and conditioner sparingly as you do not want your glove to have a detrimental effect on it due to overuse of any product. Make sure to make it a routine to repeat oiling or conditioning in a fixed interval. Hope you have got all the necessary information about oiling your baseball glove after reading this article.