Are Softball Gloves Different Than Baseball Gloves? (And Why It Matters)

are softball gloves different than baseball gloves

The question is: are softball gloves different than baseball gloves? For a quick answer, yes, those two gloves are not the same. But why does knowing the difference between the two gloves matter anyway? That will be answered in this post. So you need to keep reading to find out how one differs from another.

But before that, let us first know how the two sports differ. In softball, the balls used by the athletes are usually smaller than that used in baseball. Those type of ball also has a soft surface making it easier for the players to hit a softball with their bat.

With this, the player cannot travel a long distance after the ball is hit. Typically, softball players pitch underhand, and baseball players, on the other hand, pitch overhand.

I can see that you are really interested since you keep on scrolling. So let’s get into the main topic.


What Is The Difference Between Softball Gloves And Baseball Gloves?

Now, here’s the catch! As per the latest estimate, about 1,000 softball teams are in the US. About 25 percent of the high school girls are into playing softball. On average, each team has 12 up to 15 players. So in total, nearly 3 million players are playing this sport.

With that number, many gloves are manufactured daily to provide those players with their hand gear in playing this sport. However, buyers seem to be confused when choosing gloves because many think that softball and baseball gloves are only the same.

But no, a softball glove is designed differently and suited to the sport. So, are softball gloves different than baseball gloves? Below are some of the differences between the two.


#1. Design

When you look at the two gloves, they may look the same. But one thing that can make them distinct is their design.

For your information, a baseball is smaller than a softball by three inches. Softball gloves are designed with deeper pockets to cater to the larger softball. On the other hand, baseball gloves are designed with longer and taller pockets.

Another thing key difference in terms of the design of the webbing is. Generally, softball gloves have wider webs.

A baseball glove is the more versatile of the two since it has a deep pocket. In either of the two sports, closed webbing is required by the pitchers to keep the ball hidden.


#2. Size

If you are watching the sport from afar, the players’ gloves might look the same in size. But in actuality, softball gloves are larger than baseball gloves. Typically, the size of infielders’ softball gloves can range somewhere between 11.5 to 13 inches.

Anything beyond this size is designed for outfielders. On the other hand, baseball gloves can range from 9 inches to 13 inches.

Softball players in the United States are 14 years old on average. With this in mind, manufacturers design a variety of glove sizes. See goalkeeper glove size guide. Take note that the glove size you should get must be based on the size and age of the player.

Even the mitts used by the catchers can vary in size. For example, softball catchers would also need a bigger mitt since they are to receive a bigger ball.


#3. Fit and style

Each glove is designed accordingly to fit into the hands of the player. Gloves for fastpitch players usually come with smaller openings since women’s hands are smaller than men’s.

Manufacturers design them to fit women’s hands because the data on the web shows that more women play football while more men play baseball.

For that very same reason, baseball gloves are made with bigger openings. Furthermore, softball gloves come with longer laces providing the players with a better fit.


#4. Added reinforcements

Other than the things above, reinforcement is also something that makes a softball glove different than a baseball glove. The former is designed with extra padding for added protection against the bigger softball.

Given the size of the ball, softball gloves are also reinforced with more robust stitching to withstand the impact.


How Are Softball Gloves And Baseball Gloves Similar?

Now that you know the differences between the two let us proceed to their similarities. People often think that they are the same for a reason. Some of the things that are common to them include material and appearance. They have the same lacing and color.

How Are Softball Gloves And Baseball Gloves Similar

Both gloves are also made of leather and synthetic materials. Although leather gloves have a higher price tag, they will last longer. Still, you can opt for those synthetic gloves. Just take note that they may not be as durable.

Also, remember that a softball game can last for two to three hours. You must ensure that your gloves can withstand the repeated impact of receiving the ball anywhere from a 60 feet wide and 200 feet long softball field. If you indeed opt for a leather glove, then knowing how to care for your gloves is also necessary.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

To help you learn more about softball, we have the most common questions we have encountered so far. Come along as we answer those questions.


#1. What is the proper way of gripping a softball?

There is no one way of gripping a softball. It depends on the kind of pitch you are about to throw. You must grasp it using your middle and index fingers across its seams if it is a fastball. Do this with your thumb under the softball.

If you are throwing a curveball, grip it the same way with your middle and index fingers, but your thumb should be at the bottom this time.


#2. How heavy can a softball weigh?

Typically, softball can weigh between five and seven ounces. But the weight can differ based on the manufacturer and the softball type. Some softballs are made heavier than others.


#3. What is the size of a softball?

The sports softball uses a ball that is covered in lather. It is also round and small in size.

The standard circumference of a softball is around 30.48 centimeters. Usually, a softball is pitched by the players underhand, and the bat used to hit the ball is heavier and larger than a baseball bat.


It’s A Wrap!

Are softball gloves different than baseball gloves? It’s good that you already know the differences between softball and baseball gloves.

This article has also given you an overview of the game, how they are played, and what makes one unique from the other.

Hopefully, we have provided you with sufficient information about the question lingering on your mind. I am confident that you can choose the appropriate gloves for your sport.