Best Catchers Gear

Best Catchers Gear Set – Finding The Perfect Fit

Having the best catchers gear is a worthy investment for any baseball player, regardless of their experience. A full set of catchers gear is advantageous as it provides players with proper protection and comfort. Buying a full set is also more convenient and economical than separate pieces.

Choosing the best catchers gear set, however, has never been an easy decision. You will need to find a match for your personal criteria among a huge number of different products. The research you need is all here, let’s now dig in for more information.

What Equipment Does a Catcher Need?

Catchers need an appropriate amount of gear to keep them protected. A basic catcher gear set includes three pieces.

  • Chest protector: A pullover vest packed with leather, rubber, gel, or foam. It is the largest piece of a catcher’s gear set.
  • Leg guards: They provide protection and comfort to your shins, knees, and ankles. Extend from the top of your cleat to your knees; leg guards have a soft padding inside and a hard shell outside.
  • Catchers mask: It is designed with protection and ease of removal in mind. The mask shelters your face from strong encounters while having to be quick to shed when you pursue a fly ball.

catchers gear set

What to Look for in Catchers Gear Sets?

Before you shop for catcher gear, there are a few things you need to look at to make sure you’ll have the right set.

Size

There are normally three catcher gear sizes – youth (under ten years old), intermediate (10-15 years old), and adults (15+ years old). Most brands provide 2 or 3 models for their sets to make it easier for buyers to choose the right size.

Protection

The ultimate purpose of catchers gear is to protect the player. That goes without saying that the materials and design should be prioritized to fulfill this purpose.

Adjustability

We all know how uncomfortable it can be sitting in the crouch position for an extended time. That’s why the catcher gear should be flexible enough to facilitate the player’s movement and sitting.

Durability

You definitely need a catcher gear set that accompanies you for more than one season. Specifically, the airflow and rebound control should well absorb both your sweat and your energy so that your equipment can really stand the test of time.

Brand

Some brands are more reputable than others. They normally provide more additional features or better warranty policies to reinforce your trust in your buying decision.

8 Best Catchers Gear Set Review

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Wilson EZ Gear Catcher’s Kit – Best Fit & Protection

Wilson EZ Gear Catcher's Kit review

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Wilson EZ Gear Catcher’s Kit is an appealing set for players learning how to catch. This catcher gear set can hold up well throughout the entire season, giving young players effective mobility behind the plate.

Wilson EZ comes with four color options (Black, Navy, Royal, and Scarlet) and two size models (Large/ Extra Large and Small/ Medium). Choosing a set that matches the team’s uniform and player’s size won’t be a challenge.

The set deserves to be one of the best catchers gear sets for proper fit and function. It is packed with a highly durable ABA shell helmet for thorough protection from balls and bats. The closure system allows for quick and easy switching between on and off. And the strap is highly adjustable; you just need to set it once.

One disadvantage of Wilson EZ is that the excess strap can be too long for young players. The Velcro on the leg pads thus can be a little bit loose sometimes.

Pros

  • Four color options & two size models
  • Premium-grade ABA shell helmet
  • Quick Change closure system
  • One-time adjustable strap system

Cons

  • The excess strap is quite long
  • Loose Velcro on the leg pads

Louisville Slugger Youth PG Series 5 – Best Reputable Brand

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Louisville is one of the baseball gear brands with a long history. Its Louisville Slugger Youth PG Series 5 has received so much positive recognition from the market.

With a long-lasting reputation, Louisville Slugger Youth PG Series 5 comes with all the iconic design features for an enhanced fit. The shin guards with double-knee design offer more flexibility in the motion. And the chest protector with high-density foam padding gives the young players more comfort while in the crouching position.

Louisville Slugger Youth PG Series 5’s helmet is NOCSAE approved, leaving players no worries about its protective quality. It also has a moisture wicking chin pad to absorb sweat effectively, keeping the player’s cool head the entire game.

For some young players, the helmet can be a bit tight. And you will need a bit of time and effort to set up the straps in perfect tension. However, once in place, the straps are very durable and won’t slip easily.

Pros

  • Positive brand image
  • Iconic double-knee design
  • High-density foam padding
  • Matte finish NOCSAE approved helmet

Cons

  • The helmet is a bit tight
  • Straps need time to adjust

EASTON ELITE X Baseball Catchers Equipment Box Set – Best Color Options

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EASTON ELITE X has up to 15 different colors, making it easier to choose a team’s matching set. So if you are looking for a set with diverse buying options, EASTON ELITE X Baseball Catchers Equipment Box Set should be the one.

Besides a wide variety of color options, EASTON ELITE X also comes with many features to provide total protection for catchers. This set is recommended for young adult players. The NOCSAE Commotio Cordis Foam and specially designed chin cup bring ease of motion and comfort while wearing.

The forehead and chin pads are removable and washable for an extended time of use. The inner knees and shin pads are adjustable, giving players better airflow during the game. For additional protection, EASTON ELITE X has a toe extension so that the catcher won’t feel uptight when sitting.

For young players (less than ten years old), the helmet can be a bit too big. And even though the straps are secure, they can be too tight when locked.

Pros

  • NOCSAE Commotio Cordis Foam
  • A wide variety of color options
  • Ergonomic chin cup
  • Easy-to-adjust pads

Cons

  • The shin guards are bulky
  • The straps are a bit too tight

All-Star Inter SYSTEM7 AXIS PRO – Best Durable Catchers Gear Set

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All-Star Inter SYSTEM7 AXIS PRO can be a long-term companion for catchers of intermediate size. The best selling point on this catcher gear set is the design with durability in mind.

Specifically, All-Star Inter SYSTEM7 AXIS PRO includes a high-impact ABS shell helmet and wedged ABS chest protector for both protection and comfortable fit. Within the set, there’re also a throat guard and wristbands with ultra-cool mesh liners to further protect the catcher and improve rebound control.

The face mask is patented with exclusive All-Star’s I-Bar Vision, which offers more strength and field of view than the older models. The SYSTEM7 AXIS PRO also comes with a reinforced front double knee protector for added durability over time.

One thing you need to consider before settling down with an All-Star Inter SYSTEM7 AXIS PRO gear set is that it only comes in blue color and has no other size. It works best on intermediate players (10 – 15 years old), so if your player is about to reach the adult size, the equipment won’t give much room to grow.

Pros

  • High-impact ABS shell
  • Ultra-cool mesh liners
  • Patented I-Bar Vision face mask
  • Reinforced front double knee protector

Cons

  • No color or size option
  • Not much room to grow for young adults

Mizuno Youth Samurai Box Set – Best Gear for Young Catchers

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Mizuno Youth Samurai Box Set is another appealing catcher gear deal. If you are looking for a high-quality gear set for your young player, Mizuno Youth Samurai deserves your consideration.

The gear set has true-to-size pieces, which can be easily adjustable for a perfect fit for young catchers. The helmet is constructed to be glasses-friendly, causing no discomfort even when wearing for a long time.

As young players are prone to injuries both during practice and competition, Mizuno Youth Samurai thus designs dense chest foams and focuses more padding materials on the chest protectors. This ensures the gear set is a good fit while still having room for the player to grow.

However, the added layers of protection sometimes hinder a full range of motion. And the leg guards’ fit is not consistent from player to player. While they offer a secure feeling for the knees, there comes a little more heat retention.

Pros

  • True-to-size gear set
  • Glasses-friendly helmet
  • Dense chest foam
  • Chest protector offers a good fit and room to grow

Cons

  • Leg guards’ sizing is a bit small
  • Hard to reach a full range of motion

Easton M10 Adult Custom Catchers Set – Best Simple Design

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Easton M10 is a gear set with a minimal design for people preferring lightweight pieces while not compromising all the basic functions. Comes with asymmetrical designs for the right and left legs, Easton M10 brings custom adjustability on the pads and straps.

It also has the anti-block feature, making sure players won’t slip inside the guards when they are in and out of the blocking position. If stability is your priority when shopping for a catcher gear set, the Easton M10 is then a wise choice.

For improved stability, Easton M10 presents in its leg guards the Inner Knee Protection. This feature reduces the shocks from strong encounters between the ball and the player. The exclusive Exos ventilation system also facilitates airflow, leveraging the breathability of the gear set.

A drawback of this catcher gear set is that the foams in the chest protector are quite thin. On top of that, the mesh liners on the helmet are not so durable. If there are several hits right in front, the helmet and chest protector won’t last for long.

Pros

    • Asymmetrical minimal designs
  • Trueblock anti-roll feature
  • Inner knees protection
  • Exos ventilation system

Cons

  • Thin chest foams
  • Mesh liners are not so durable

Rawlings Players Series Youth Catchers Set – Best Low-Budget Catcher Set

Rawlings Players Series Youth Catchers Set

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Rawlings Players Series Youth Catchers Set can be a great starting point for junior catchers. As your kid may change their interest every now and then, or they are not sure of what they like or don’t like, this gear set is ideal for when they start learning baseball.

Comes as a full set, Rawlings Players Series gives all the basic pieces for PE protection. Within the box, you will have a face mask, a chest protector, and two leg guards. However, as this gear set is made for juniors, it does not have much room for growth.

Despite being a low-budget catcher gear set, the Rawlings Players Series is approved by NOCSAE. There should be no worries about its protective quality.

A small disadvantage on the Rawlings Players Series Youth Catchers Set is that the straps are quite loose. Especially for players under nine years old, it’s crucial to spend time adjusting the straps to find the perfect fit for their own safety.

Pros

  • Affordable pricing
  • All full set – mask, chest protector, leg guards
  • Approved NOCSAE Standard
  • A good set for junior players learning baseball

Cons

  • Limited room for growth
  • Straps are quite loose

Wilson C1K Catcher’s Gear Kit – Best Versatile Catchers Gear

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Wilson C1K Catcher’s Gear Kit is one of the best catcher gear sets with high durability and versatility. The Wilson brand has long been one of the market leaders; they know how to offer their customers with added values. That explains the set comes with both Adult and Intermediate models, and you can choose among seven color options to find the perfect match.

Such iconic “Wilson” features as washable moisture wicking chin pad and knee pad, overlapping thigh pieces, and high-density foam padding are still present on the C1K version. On top of that, the new MLB Prostyle is integrated into this gear set for improved durability.

A commonly reported complaint about the Wilson C1K Catcher’s Gear Kit is that it’s quite a challenge to move the pad in the helmet. Consequently, the helmet can be a bit narrow for some players.

Pros

  • Various color options
  • Available in both Adult and Intermediate size
  • MLB Prostyle for durability and sturdiness
  • Over-the-shoulder adjustable harness

Cons

  • Padding in the helmet is hard to move
  • Helmet is a bit narrow

NOCSAE Approval

NOCSAE stands for National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment. It is highly advisable for a set of catcher gear to be NOCSAE approved.

NOCSAE Approval

Credit: nocsae.org

This approval is also one of the features to look for when judging a catcher gear’s quality. In fact, the National Federation of State High School Associations requires all catchers to wear NOCSAE approved gear when officially playing in the season.

Benefits of Purchasing Full Catchers Gear

Investing in a quality set of catcher gear will pay dividends for seasons. Let’s dig in the three most significant benefits of purchasing a full catchers gear.

Better performance

Crouching in the line of fire, catchers put themselves in one of the most dangerous positions. They thus need proper protection to be able to stay sharp in the game and perform at their prime level. Besides protection, a quality set of catcher gear will also provide

More economical

Instead of buying separate pieces every now and then and maybe at different locations, going for a full set saves more of your time, effort, and money. Most sellers have rewards, discounts, or incentives for the gear sets, from which you can get advantages to receiving more from the deal.

Matching sets

Having a helmet, mask, and leg guards in a set makes it easier to match with the team color. Besides the aesthetic appeal, a full set offers wider protection coverage as the pieces are designed to fit with each other.

Verdict

We hope that our buying guide and review of the best catchers gear sets has helped to narrow down your buying options. There are no two sets that are exactly the same; not all gear works for every player.

Consider the best value for your purchase? Go for the Wilson EZ Gear Catcher’s Kit. This comprehensive set has everything it takes to start catching with no worries. Have a different answer? The deal is sealed, don’t hesitate, your answer always makes sense.