Great news:Today I finally came across my #1 ‘sucky’. (For those of you who don’t know my family or haven’t seen me discuss things in my life I can’t live without ie: favorite whisk, favorite shirt, can’t-live-without pillow… just know that these things are very important, and they are called ‘sucky’ items. Think binkie, blankie, etc., only an adult version.) Well today I found my coveted black DeMarini VooDoo leather softball GLOVE. For a few weeks I’ve been using my catcher’s mitt at pitching lessons but I’m so glad to have my regular old glove again. Yes, I only lost it for a couple of weeks but the place I found it in was surprising.
Bad news: Upon discovery, my glove was looking weak and dry. It was in the garage (which is heated to 60 degrees) but still looked bad. I mean BAD. I should say, it is 13 years old and has had regular use since I got it in 2001 while in my first year at college. I’ve tried to buy a glove just like it but they are not made anymore. It is 13 2/3″ (big by most standards) and I swear it was game ready the day I pulled it out of it’s box and plastic. I try to take precautions each year to make sure it is in great shape. I’ve never even had to have it restrung. It is the best. Still, the problem remained… my glove was in terrible shape. Yuck.
Dry and crusty with a bit of dirt in it… where did that come from? We’ve been throwing indoors since December!
My poooooooor little baby!
Solution: I fixed my softball glove with Huggies Baby Wipes, a couple tablespoons of Olive Oil and a white sock.
First off, brush any excess dirt off of your glove with a washcloth.
I had to go one step further and remove some additional grit with some baby wipes. Huggies with Shea Butter. They worked well… don’t ask me why! (I guess if they are good enough for a baby’s bum, they’ll work for my glove.)
Next… a drizzle of olive oil. This is exactly how I drizzle oil into a skillet over the stovetop. Ha.
*Don’t use too much oil. The pores of the glove need to remain open, not clogged with excess oil. Plus, more oil=heavier glove.
Finally a use for extra footie-socks that don’t have matches… Rub the oil gently into the glove.
Repeat on the inside. (I love using olive oil… doesn’t even make it smelly!)
Photography by my 5 year old. Keep spreading the oil around, covering the entire pocket.
Next, I always gently tug on the laces to tighten my pocket all over. Through the years the laces keep stretching. (*Do you always carry plastic zip ties in your bat bag? You should. They are essential for quick repairs if you bust a lace in a game.)
I just did this in December… look how much it has stretched since then.
She’s a beaut, Clark.
This is how I usually store my glove, it keeps the center full and not flat.
Tonight is our first tee-ball practice. I have one excited 5 year old. She’s ready to play ball! (I hope I can get her talked into cleats instead of cowboy boots.)
Tips: Yes, and it is one of the better jobs I’ve done when trying to ‘recover’ a glove from a bit of misuse or lack of care. Bottom line… your glove (if good quality) is the real hide of an animal, don’t do anything to it that you wouldn’t do to your own skin to treat it well. This is my first run with olive oil so I will let you know how it goes. Never over-oil your glove. Just a light coating to refresh the flexibility of the glove. Play plenty of catch with your glove to restore it to shape. Always keep a ball or two inside of your glove and wrap it with handkerchiefs or large stretchy elastic ties between uses to maintain shape.
*Don’t bake your glove. Please. I don’t want to talk about it.
*You can try the water-submerging treatment at your own risk. There are plenty of videos on You Tube to guide you.
*Bottom line, purchase a quality glove in the first place and you’ll spend less time getting it game ready.
Good luck this season!
Here are some throwbacks for you… I think this was 2004? Love these girls.
This was 10 years ago… Lord. (I’m in the middle, visiting with another pitcher and a Texas teammate I keep in touch with.)
This one is OLD. circa 2000. I’m certain that I didn’t know that being “The Cremators” and having the logo on your jersey of a horse drawn hearse bearing a large urn inside was weird. Is it weird?