Have you ever heard a loud pop sound when a catcher catches a baseball during a game or when playing catch? That popping sound comes from a baseball glove, and most catchers love hearing their gloves pop upon impact. But why do baseball gloves pop?
The popping sound you hear when a catcher receives a baseball comes from the ball hitting his mitt. The sound is created by the air pushed into the mitt, followed by the ball. You must catch the ball in the correct part of the leather glove to get a louder pop from a baseball glove.
It is not only impressive when a baseball glove pops, but it shows that you know precisely how to catch a baseball. We will discuss everything to know about why baseball gloves pop, and what you must do to achieve it.
What Makes A Baseball Glove Pop?
The first time you hear a baseball glove pop, you may look around to see where the shot came from. Baseball gloves that pop sound like gunfire, and the sound is almost as loud (and impressive) as the crack of the baseball bat when it strikes the ball.
But what causes a baseball glove to pop? The popping sound you hear from a popping baseball glove comes from the wind and balls hitting the leather glove pocket. Since you don’t always hear the glove pop, you may wonder what makes it happen.
The average baseball player pitches a ball between 50 and 60 miles per hour. In comparison, many professional pitchers can throw a ball at 95 miles per hour or more. When the ball travels at that speed, it forces a lot of air to move forward quickly. This air “bubble” hits the baseball glove first, followed by the ball.
Together, the air and ball hit the glove pocket, creating a loud, crashing noise known as a pop. The pop may be louder depending on how fast a ball travels and where it connects with the glove.
The ball needs to hit the glove at the correct spot for the baseball glove to pop on impact. We’ll discuss how to make a baseball glove pop in a later section. For now, however, you should know that some skill is required to make it happen.
You also need a proper leather baseball mitt for it to pop, as synthetic materials won’t create the same sound. Old, tattered baseball mitts are less likely to pop since the leather isn’t as taut as new leather.
Is It Okay For A Baseball Glove To Pop?
Since the popping sound of a baseball glove is somewhat distressing, you may wonder if it is harmful to the mitt when it pops? Fortunately, there is no harm in having your baseball glove pop, as it simply indicates that you are catching the ball with the correct part of the glove.
This means that having your baseball glove pop won’t harm the glove. However, that doesn’t mean you should neglect your baseball glove altogether. In fact, if you don’t properly maintain your baseball glove, it will lose the ability to pop. It will even lose its pocket, which may result in you dropping the ball more often.
So, how do you maintain your baseball glove to ensure it has plenty of popping capabilities? To maintain your glove, you must:
- Break your glove in properly
- Wipe the glove with a soft, clean rag after each use to remove the sweat and dirt
- Store the baseball glove in a cool, dry place facing down
- Keep the glove dry
- Use leather conditioner to keep the glove in good condition
- Reshape your glove as needed
By keeping your glove in good condition, it will be more comfortable, and you will get better use of it. You will also ensure your chances of getting a better pop from the glove, and the glove is less likely to get damaged during use.
How Do I Make My Baseball Glove Pop?
Before learning how to make a baseball glove pop, you must first understand how to catch the ball properly. Since the popping sound only happens when the baseball hits a certain part of the glove, you must ensure that it is positioned correctly.
Most catchers say that to have a baseball glove pop, you must catch it between your thumb and index finger. If you catch the baseball here, the glove creates a pocket where the ball can rest securely. It prevents the ball from popping out of the glove.
It also increases the chances of the glove making that satisfying popping sound when you catch the ball. So, how do you catch a baseball in the correct area to make a pop?
First, you must position your body correctly to catch the ball. This means standing with your legs hip-width apart, and your knees slightly bent. Next, turn your body to face the ball and stand on the balls of your feet.
Track the ball with your eyes and move towards it. Keep the ball out of your sight. This allows you to track it more efficiently and determine where it will land. When the ball is thrown or hit, put your gloved hand out in front of you, palm facing outward.
Turn your hand down if the ball is below your middle. Then, aim your hand so the ball lands in the glove’s pocket (your palm) between your thumb and index finger. Close your hand as soon as you feel the ball in your glove. If all goes well, this should create a loud popping sound, meaning you caught the ball correctly!
There are also other factors that influence whether the baseball glove pops or not, including the speed at which the ball is pitched and the type of material your glove is made from. With practice, you should be able to make your baseball glove pop more often.
Why Does The Ball Pop Out Of My Baseball Glove?
Another kind of popping that happens with a baseball glove is when the ball pops out of the glove. This often happens to new baseball players who aren’t used to catching a ball yet. However, a baseball glove can also pop out of the glove if the glove is too old and worn or if you time the catch incorrectly.
Learning to catch your baseball correctly will help you avoid the ball popping out of the glove. As will breaking in your baseball correctly. Furthermore, keeping your glove well-maintained will ensure it is in top condition, preventing the baseball from popping out.
Finally, using a higher-quality glove ensures the ball doesn’t pop out. Although you can use any glove to play baseball, the cheapest gloves aren’t as well-manufactured. As a result, they may not be effective at closing around the ball properly.
The popping sound you hear from a baseball glove happens when the baseball and air hit the glove in just the right position. If you want your baseball glove to pop when catching the ball, you should keep your glove well-maintained and catch the ball between your thumb and index finger. The ball’s speed also determines if the glove will pop.