If you have been playing baseball for a while now, you know how finicky baseball gloves can get. Sure, any decent baseball glove is made to perform, but it requires a lot of coddling if you want it to last more than a season. And it can easily get frustrating for a new player.
But sadly, there’s no way around it. If you want your new baseball glove to survive, you need to clean it properly, store it in the right place, and condition it whenever it feels too dry.
Now, when I say clean, some people might assume that it’s not a big deal. You have a dishwasher at home, after all. But before you toss your dirty gloves in the dishwasher, make sure you say your goodbye’s because it’s not coming out in a good state.
Cleaning a baseball glove needs to be done carefully and by hand. You can’t rush this, and unfortunately, you can’t avoid this either. But let me try to make things as easy for you as possible.
What can I Use to Clean My Leather Baseball Glove?
When it comes to cleaning your baseball glove, you don’t want to use any product that can damage the leather. So, using any abrasive cleaners is a strict no-no. Personally, I try to avoid any sort of cleaning chemicals if I can manage them.
If you ask me, the best way to clean a baseball glove is to use a soft-bristled brush like a toothbrush, a clean, moist rag, and your favorite glove conditioner for post-cleaning touch-ups. You can also use alternative baseball glove oils if you don’t have any glove conditioner in your home.
Steps to Cleaning Your Leather Baseball Glove?
Cleaning your baseball glove can feel like a chore at times. Things would be much simpler if you could just toss it in the tossing machine like an old shirt and call it a day. But sadly, you need to slow things down and take your time cleaning your baseball glove for its safety.
Here are the steps to cleaning your baseball glove the right way:
- Take a clean toothbrush or any soft-bristled brush and gently wipe away any dirt residue from the surface of the glove. You need to apply firm pressure without being too hard. Make sure you check between the fingers and the laces. If the dirt dried off and can’t be removed with a brush, use a dash of leather cleaner to soften it up.
- Next, take a sponge or clean cloth and apply a bit of leather cleaner to it. You can also use shaving cream or Vaseline as an alternative. Make sure you don’t use too much of it, though.
- Then rub the cloth or sponge over the surface to buff it out a bit.
- Make sure you wipe the cleaner over the entire glove. There are a lot of hard-to-reach crevices in the baseball glove. You might need to apply a bit of pressure to get the cleaner into those areas.
- Then take another clean, damp cloth and use it to wipe off any residual cleaner from the leather. Let the glove rest, and wait for the baseball glove to dry off completely.
- Take your favorite glove conditioner and apply it on a piece of cloth. Then rub it on the surface of the glove in a thorough and gentle circular motion.
That’s about all there’s to it. After this, put your glove in a well-ventilated place away from sunlight for a while, and it should be ready to use the next day.
Can You Wash Leather Baseball Gloves?
No, washing a baseball glove is a bad idea. While a bit of water might not harm it too much, exposure to a large quantity of water will remove the protective oil from the leather and cause it to deteriorate. The leather will also get heavier and can start to crack once it dries up on its own.
That is why if your baseball glove gets wet from playing in the rain, you need to jump through a lot of hoops to dry it the right way. But long story short – don’t wash your leather baseball glove.
How Do You Clean Old Leather Baseball Gloves?
If you have an old leather baseball glove that you are planning to restore, the first step is to clean it. Now, you want to be careful with cleaning an old glove, especially if it’s not in good condition. You might even find some molds that you need to clean off the glove.
But the basic principle is still the same. You need to be gentle, and you need to be thorough. Just make sure you are extra careful not to damage the glove any further. As long as you apply light pressure when using the brush or the cloth, you should be fine.
With All Said and Done
Cleaning your baseball glove requires a personal touch – you can’t just toss it in a machine. While it might be a bit annoying to rookie players, most seasoned players actually consider it a big part of their training.
If you care for the sport, the least you can do is treat your equipment with the respect that it deserves. By caring for your glove and cleaning it every now and then, you can make sure that it gives you the best performance it possibly can.
I hope my in-depth guideline on how to clean a leather baseball glove could help you understand the best way to keep your glove nice and fresh. Good luck!