Fastpitch softball gloves are essential equipment. There are countless options on the market from many quality softball brands so you can easily get confused and don’t know which one to choose. Because of that, we have tested the most popular gloves on the market and have put up this list of the best softball gloves so you can easily choose the right one.

Here you will learn about all the details of quality gloves, how to find the right glove size for you,  how to break them in and how to properly take care of them.

Let’s dive in.

Softball glove

Top 5 Softball Gloves Comparison Table

X2 Nokona Louisville Slugger LXT Fastpitch Glove Series
Name Nokona X2 Buckaroo X2-V1250 Rawlings Sporting Goods Liberty Wilson A2000 Superskin Louisville Slugger LXT Glove Series Easton Ghost Tournament Elite
Size 12.5″ 12″-13″ 12″-34″ 12″-33″ 12.5″-34″
Material Leather Leather Leather Leather Leather

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Nokona X2 Buckaroo X2-V1250

Nokona is an all-American company that makes all-American gloves, and the Nokona X2 Buckaroo is one of the best hand-made gloves you can get. Most players refer to them as the “Cadillac of gloves”, because of their high quality, durability and the fact they’re 100% USA made softball gloves. The two-piece hybrid leather design utilizes the softer kangaroo leather with the harder, tougher steerhide leather, providing a very tight fit and game-ready feel right out of the box. This is a serious glove made for serious players that want to step their game up.

Features:

  • 12.5 Inch size and fully closed web
  • Velcro strap
  • Game-Ready Feel, very easy to break-in
  • Hybrid Leather Design utilizing both kangaroo and steer leather
  • Very durable
  • Padding system for added protection
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Rawlings Sporting Goods Liberty Advanced

Rawlings’ Liberty Advanced series has perfectly-balanced gloves especially tailored for female athlete’s hands. The single post, double bar web is durable, easy to see through and cups the ball nicely. This glove is made out of full-grain oil treated leather, and comes 80% broken-in out of the box; it’s fairly easy to break-in and will last you a long time with proper care and maintenance. To protect the palm and the index finger and reduce the sting felt, this mitt has Poron XRD pads. This is the best option of the top rated fastpitch softball gloves for players on a budget.
Features:

  • 13 Inch pattern, Single Post, Double Bar web
  • Adjustable, no-slip pull strap
  • Full-grain oil treated leather
  • 80% broken-in from the factory
  • Poron XRD protection
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Wilson A2000

A2000 fastpitch glove series is a legendary glove series made by Wilson. The new series have some great features:  Fastpitch patterns which are designed for female athletes, Drawstring Wrist Closure for better comfort and immediate adjustment and Pro Stock Leather & SuperSkin for perfect break-in and durability to last you years and SuperSkin (twice as strong as regular leather) helps to lighten the glove. The design of this glove is very nice also, with multiple beautiful colorways to choose from. This is undoubtedly one of the best glove series on the market right now.

Features:

  • Fastpitch patterns
  • SuperSkin
  • Dual Post Web Pattern
  • Drawstring Wrist Closure
  • Flat Finger Binding
  • Multiple great colorways
Wilson A2000 Fastpitch Glove Series
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Louisville Slugger LXT

Louisville Slugger LXT is the leading option on the market right now and a glove that once you break-in, it will last you a really really long time. The LXT comes with the double-oiled full grain leather for durability. It features the X-Spand wrist opening for unmatched fit and the catching on this glove is absolutely perfect. The only downside to this glove is that it is not the most comfortable glove on the market, but other then that it is just perfect.

Features:

  • Adjustable Wrist Strap
  • Full-Grain Steerhide Leather
  • X-Spand wrist opening
  • 12.50 Inch Pattern
  • Conventional Open Back
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Easton Ghost Tournament Elite

This glove from Easton is designed for female’s hands specifically so you can expect fantastic fit. These glove series carry the same name as their very popular fastpitch bat, the Ghost. The Easton Ghost Tournament Elite has some amazing features to it; it has an open back for a more secure fit which is called the Quantum Closure System and has specific patters to match the size of female’s hands. And the leather used to make them is pure quality. It called the Diamond PRO Steer USA and it has a top quality, soft lining. This gloves from Easton are highly recommended and we give them the best grade possible.
Features:

  • Designed for female’s hands
  • Diamond PRO Steer USA Leather
  • Quantum Closure System – for a better fit
  • Great colorway
  • 2021 model
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Mizuno MVP Prime

The Mizuno MVP Prime Glove Series are professional level gloves for players on a smaller budget so they can take your game to the next level. The gloves require little to no break-in time and have good padding, easy and snug fit for a female hand. They have professional stitching and are made of handcrafted bio-leather for incredible level of softness and durability. Mizuno MVP Prime is recommended for pitchers and infielders.

Features:

  • Handcrafted with Bio Soft Leather
  • Parashock + Palm Pad to help increase impact absorption
  • Professional Level Lacing
  • Adjustable Wrist Strap
  • Black-Gold | White-Gold Colorway
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Wilson Aura

If you are a developing player on a budget, the Wilson Aura is a perfect choice for you. Top grain leather shell gives you amazing feel and lightness. It has a dual post web pattern and features a full leather construction. This glove truly helps in elevating your game if you are a young player. The British Tan/Black, British Tan/White and Ivory/Dark Brown colorways are available.

Features:

  • Top Grain Leather Shell
  • Dual Post Web Pattern
  • Full Leather Construction
  • 2-Piece Weave Web
  • Style: 12″, 12.5″, 33″
  • 3 great colorways
Wilson Aura Fastpitch Glove Series
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Easton Black Pearl

The Easton Black Pearl Fastpitch gloves are great gloves for female youth players as they are designed specifically for them. It is crafted with Select Cowhide leather, has Flex Notch for easier pocket closure and they have very secure fit because of the Lock Down Wrist Strap. Web pattern is woven web and the back is open. They come in 12” and 12.5” size and a very cool black/cyan colorway.

Features:

  • Select Cowhide leather shell
  • Flex Notch system
  • Leather Construction
  • Glove type: Pitcher
  • Size: 12″, 12.5″
Easton Black Pearl Fastpitch Glove Series
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Rawlings Heart Of The Hide

This glove series from Rawlings is designed for elite softball players and also can be used by high school players. Heart Of The Hide is very good constructed, has excellent quality and once it’s broken-in it will perform excellent. It is made of full-grain leather, the same leather Rawlings’ uses to construct their famous baseball gloves. Rawlings made this series with zero chock palm padding for protection and adjustable pull-strap closure for better fit. It is recommended for outfielders and pitchers and is designed for the females hand.

Features:

  • Full-grain Leather Construction
  • Non-Slip Pull Strap Back
  • Basket Web
  • Narrow Fit
  • Multiple Colorways
  • Size: 12″, 12.5″, 12,75″,13″
Rawling Heart Of The Hide Fastpitch Glove Series
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Mizuno Prime Elite

The exceptional Mizuno Prime Elite gloves are crafted specifically for the best fastpitch players. They are made from professional leather that is soft and have amazing feel, one of the best in the game. The leather is also very durable. The glove features professional glove patterns and Finger Core Technology which, when playing a tough play, assists in getting the better control and giving more flexibility to the player. It also looks amazing in this White/Grey colorway. The Prime Elite from Mizuno gets a pure 5/5 stars, a truly exceptional glove with no cons.

Features:

  • Oil Soft Plus Leather
  • Professional Patterns
  • Finger Core Technology
  • Great colorway
  • Comes in different sizes: 11.5″, 11.75″, 12″, 12.5″, 13″, 34″.
Mizuno Prime Elite Fastpitch Softball Glove Series
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Fastpitch Softball Glove Elements

Every softball glove is composed of different elements. These elements vary depending on a style of a glove and player’s position.

Sofball glove diagram with elements

WEBBING

Webbing is the part that connects the thumb to the fingers. There are two types of webbing, closed and open. Pitchers usually go for the closed webbing to help them hide the ball from the hitter. First base players often prefer an open web, because it allows them to see through when catching fly balls and allows faster transfer to the throwing hand.

POCKET

Pocket is the indentation in the palm of a glove. The size of the pocket depends on the position you play. Shallow pockets are for middle infielders so they can quickly grab and throw the ball. Deeper pockets help outfielders bring in fly balls. Pockets on softball gloves are bigger because of the larger size of the softball.

BACK

Back is the part of the glove behind your wrist and it can be open or closed. Open back design with an open space above ankle strap allows for a better mobility and a faster ball turnaround, while closed back gives extra strength and support for catching pop flies.

WRIST ADJUSTMENT

The wrist adjustment gives the glove snug fit to your hand. These can either be Velcro, that offers the convenience of pulling and adjusting to your comfort level , a buckle system, laced, or a D-ring fastener that allows you to pull on the lacing and make the glove tighter.

How to Choose the Right Softball Glove

When shopping for a glove there are a few points you should take into consideration, including length, web design, and style. One of the most important things to consider is choosing a right glove for the position you will be playing. Whether you’re an A-level or a rookie, it is essential that you choose the mitt best suited for the type of player you are.

OUTFIELD GLOVES

Outfield gloves are larger gloves, made for diving catches and catching fly balls. These gloves are usually longer and deeper with extra support in the fingers. The pockets for fastpitch softball can be closed webs because they need to be extra deep due to the size of the softball. The typical size of an outfielder’s softball glove is 9 to 15 inches.

CATCHER’S MITT

A catcher’s mitt is the largest on the field because catcher needs to be able to handle and hold onto high speed pitching. It also has the deepest pocket and it does not have separately cut fingers like gloves for other positions. Catcher’s mitts are measured differently: they are measured around the circumference of the glove to capture the entire catching area of the mitt. The standard size range is 29.5 to 35 inches for softball.

FIRST BASEMAN GLOVES

A first baseman’s glove is similar to the catcher’s mitt, only longer. It is also not as heavily padded around the fingers and the thumb of the mitt is not padded at all. The pocket of these gloves are a bit shallower to allow faster ball-to-hand transfer. First basemen should keep gloves to around 1 inch past the fingertips to maintain a greater amount of control. The typical size range for softball is from 11.5 to 13 inches.

INFIELD GLOVES

Infielders need gloves designed for constant action. These gloves are shorter and have a shallower pocket than others. They are designed for players that play shortstop, second base or third base. Sizing is mainly the personal preference. Many middle infielders are also a “utility” players, which means they will play many or all positions, so they will opt for the larger glove to help them in the outfield.

PITCHERS

Pitchers don’t usually need specialized gloves. The most important thing for the pitcher is comfort and the ability to hide the ball. Most pitchers choose closed webbing over open to prevent the batter from seeing the ball and not to give away the pitch before they begin their motion.

BATTING GLOVES

Batting gloves are a different kind of gloves for softball. They are made to protect player’s hand while swinging the bat. Every inch of these gloves is specially designed to give you the best grip, comfort and performance and to prevent stings and blisters from hitting.

Fun Fact:

People tend to use terms “glove” and “mitt” as they were the same. However, there is a difference! Gloves have distinct finger separations, and mitts do not. Mitts are used by catchers and first basemen, while gloves are used by the players on all other positions.

Fastpitch Softball Glove Sizing Gide

What Glove Size Do I Need?

Proper fit is essential for a player to maintain control of the glove and the ball. A softball glove should give you a snug fit and you should be able to easily open and close the glove around the ball. The size of the glove depends on the position on the field and on the players age, since younger players typically have smaller hands.

Fastpitch gloves size chart

Please note that this table is purely guidelines. It is possible that young players have smaller or bigger hands than average, so the glove size should be chosen accordingly.

Leather for the Fastpitch Softball Gloves

Other than design, the biggest difference in softball gloves makes the leather they are made of. The quality of material is what determines the price, but also the durability and the overall feel. The softball gloves can be made of synthetic leather, cowhide and pigskin, full-grain leather or steer hide.

SYNTHETIC LEATHER

Generally the cheapest and are recommended for very young players that do not play on high level because they give solid performance at economic price.

COWHIDE

Great choice for serious players. Cowhide breaks in quickly and is gives pretty good flexibility. But beware: quality of cowhide can vary greatly from one manufacturer to the other.

STEER HIDE

The type of leather that offers heavier weight and durability. One thing you need to know it that there are not standardized guidelines on what is considered to be premium steer hide. That is why it’s important to stick with the established brands.

FULL-GRAIN LEATHER

Stiff and heavy and requires more time to break in. These leathers are rarely pre-oiled. Once broken in, full grain leather is superior in both performance and durability and it is used by many premium and pro series players.

GLOVE COST: Softball gloves come in various prices. You can purchase gloves in retail stores, sporting goods stores, and online. Glove is an investment and you should get the right quality for the price you pay. This of course doesn’t mean that the most expensive glove will; be the best, but don’t go for the cheapest one either. You should be prepared to pay for the quality you expect. Don’t let price be the reason to buy poor quality glove, because it will hurt your performance on the field.

How to Care for Your Softball Glove

When you purchase a brand new softball glove it is important to break it in properly. The best way to break in a glove is to use specially designed glove oil. It keeps the leather “alive” softens it up, while minimizing weight gain. Apply a very small amount of glove oil to a sponge or cloth, then apply the oil to the areas of the glove that are currently firm. Work the oil into the leather evenly. The general rule is to care for the leather of the glove, like you would care for your own skin. Exposure to harsh weather conditions, extreme temperatures or excessive moisture requires extra care.

There are few important points to remember considering the softball glove care:

  • You should never put too much oil/glove conditioner on the leather, as it will damage it and shorten its life.
  • Leave the glove in warm temperature for 24 hours to allow oil to absorb.
  • To make sure that your glove is ready for the game you need to practice with it every day.
  • When you finish the season, apply oil very lightly to avoid the glove becoming brittle.
  • Store your glove with a ball in the pocket to keep its shape.
  • Never try to soften your glove by warming it up in an oven or a microwave, it will damage the leather fibers.
  • Do not use linseed oil or silicon based spray, these will close the pores and cause the glove to harden and dry.
  • Do not apply glove oil directly to the leather, it is too concentrated.
  • Water will cause leather to dry out and crack.
  • The higher the quality of the leather the harder it is to break in.
  • There is no shortcut to breaking in a glove, playing catch is still the best way.

Best Brands For Softball Gloves

Rawlings Sporting GoodsRawlings is one of the premier softball brands. It has been around for over 130 years and they specialize in high quality baseball and softball equipment.

Wilson is one of the biggest sports equipment manufacturers in the world. They produce equipment for a huge number of sports and in softball they are known for their quality gloves and catcher’s mitts.

Nokona is an American brand that produces equipment for sports, specializing in baseball equipment. Their softball gloves are top of the like and Nokona is one of the few brands that make their softball and baseball leather gloves in the USA.

EastonEaston is a great brand that makes baseball and softball bats, gloves, etc. Their products are some of the most popular on the market.

Louisville SluggerLouisville Slugger is another brand on this list that has been producing equipment for more than 100 years and they are a synonym for exquisite craftsmanship and quality.

Mizuno is the only non-US brand on this list. Mizuno is a Japanese sports company founded in 1906 that is producing equipment for different sports, including softball.

Fastpitch Softball Gloves Reviews

All About Fastpitch gives reviews and recommendations aimed to help you make better and more informed decisions when purchasing your softball glove. On these pages you can find some of the best fastpitch softball gloves for this season. Whether you are looking for an infielder’s glove, outfielder’s glove, catcher’s mitt or a first baseman mitt, we hope to offer you information that will help you make the right choice.