Choosing the Perfect Baseball Glove for Young Players (Ages 8-12)

Discover the perfect fit for each field position, whether it's outfield, corner infield, middle infield, or pitching. From glove sizes to materials and webbing styles, this post unpacks the essentials for young players stepping onto the field.


7/3/20244 min read

brown leather bag with red logo
brown leather bag with red logo

Welcome to our guide on selecting the ideal baseball glove for young players! Finding the right glove is crucial for athletes aged 8 to 12 as they navigate the diverse positions on the field. Let's explore the key considerations and tips for choosing gloves tailored to different positions.

Understanding Position-Specific Glove Selection

There are two basic types of webbing, open or closed. Pitchers often prefer a closed web to help them hide the ball from onlooking hitters. Outfielders and third basemen also tend to enjoy closed webs because of the extra support. Middle infielders tend to lean more towards an open web so they can transfer the ball out of their glove faster.

The size of the pocket will depend on the position you play as well. Shallow pockets are built for middle infielders. This allows them to retrieve the ball quicker, and complete plays in a faster manner. Deeper pockets help outfielders secure fly balls with more consistency.

What to Look For in Outfield Gloves:

  • Main Characteristics: Outfielders often need large gloves with deep pockets to assure that they can catch and hold those far field, high-speed balls.

  • Webbing: Outfielders prefer a closed web style.

  • Size: Outfield gloves tend to be larger in design than infielder models in terms of the length of the finger stalls. These larger gloves allow outfielders to be able to cover more ground. Also, outfielders are looking to make a catch while infielders, who like smaller gloves, need to retrieve and release the ball as quickly as possible. Because of this, deep pockets are ideal for outfielders. Today many different models and sizes are available for outfielders. The most common sizes are from twelve inches and above depending on personal preference.

  • Other traits to look out for: When selecting an outfielder's model, you will first need to select the size that best fits your personal needs. The next thing you need to think about is web style that you will like, whether that's an open web or a closed web. The third step will be to choose if you have a preference for an open back or a closed back. Your next decision will be to see if you have a brand preference. Finally, you will make the purchase that best fits your specific needs. Gloves have changed over time and will continue to change for the better of the game.

What to Look For in Infield Gloves:

  • Pitcher Gloves: Pitchers want a glove that has a solid web; this is because the solid web will hide their fingers as they adjust their grip on the ball for the next pitch. As for the size of the glove for pitchers, it is up to personal preference.

  • Middle Infielders: Smaller mitts allow middle infielders to transfer the ball out of the glove to their hand as quickly as possible. Open web gloves are also preferred by middle infielders such as an I-web or H-web style glove.

  • Second Basemen: Second basemen wear the smallest gloves because they are lighter weight. Most second basemen use an 11 to an 11.5-inch mitt, while shortstops will usually use an 11.5 to an 11.75-inch mitt.

  • Third Basemen: Third basemen, on the other hand, will ofter wear a bit larger glove around 12 to 12.5 inches long because they are the closest fielder to home plate. Balls hit at third base are the hardest hit and come in fast. Plus, a longer glove allows them to pick up balls hit down the foul line easier, because of the long reach of the glove.

  • Other traits to look out for: Some other factors that can play a role in deciding which glove to choose is a brand preference or the color of the glove.

What to Look For in a First Baseman Glove:

  • Main Characteristics: Single First base gloves are unique because the fingers aren’t separated. This allows first basemen to easily scoop up poorly thrown balls. They are also a bit longer than other gloves to help catch rolling balls.

  • Webbing: Open Single-Post, Dual Post, or H-Webbing allow first basemen to grab balls from the ground without also digging up dirt and dust.

  • Pocket Size: Large, deep pockets allow first base players to more securely grab and hold onto the balls that come their way.

  • Other traits to look out for: First base gloves should be sturdy enough to take a high volume of pitches. Leather provides long-lasting strength to allow first basemen to catch ball after ball.

Important Factors to Consider for Young Players

Weight and Feel

Opt for gloves that aren't too heavy for young hands. Lighter gloves made from quality materials like soft leather or synthetic materials are easier for younger players to handle, ensuring comfort during play.


Look for gloves with adjustable wrist straps or laces. These features provide a better fit and allow for adjustments as the young player's hands continue to grow, extending the glove's usability.

Breaking-in Period

Consider gloves that are easier to break in initially. Young players might struggle with stiff gloves, so opting for ones that mold to the hand more easily can prevent discomfort during use.

Selecting the right baseball glove for young players is a crucial step in their development on the field. Consider the player's position, age, and personal preferences when choosing the glove that fits just right. Encourage trying on different gloves to find the perfect match, ensuring comfort, control, and a great game every time they step onto the field!

Remember, the perfect glove isn’t just a tool; it's an extension of the player's skills and passion for the game! Check out the Official Cheshire Reds Store for your next one!