Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Brian Gordon’s Glove Story

Baseball is a game of tradition where the gloves are made out of leather and bats made out of wood. However, Brian Gordon is the exception – he’s believed to be the first major-leaguer to use a leather-free mitt.

Brian Gordon, who was drafted by Arizona in the seventh round in 1997 as an outfielder and more than 14 years later will have his first at bat today when the right-hander (0-0, 3.38) makes his second career start after allowing two runs in 5 1/3 innings of New York's 3-2, 12-inning victory Thursday against Texas. “It’s kind of funny, if you had told me 10 years ago that I’d be getting my first major-league at bat as a pitcher, I’d be laughing at you,” Gordon said. “It’s going to be special.” 

The converted outfielder’s glove is made up exclusively of microfibers, while the laces are made from parachute rope.  While other big-leaguers have some artificial material incorporated into their gloves, his glove is completely leather-free. “I think it freaks people out because it looks different than the leather gloves that everybody is so comfortable with,” Gordon said. “Looks aren’t really anything that I’m interested in; it’s the way it feels on the mound.”

A baseball glove is the most individual, valued, and respected piece of sports equipment a player owns.  A broken in glove becomes an extension of the player.  How long Gordon, a 32-year-old journeyman minor leaguer, stays in the rotation depends on what happens to Bartolo Colon and Phil Hughes. 

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Geo Ginrosge
Email: Ginrosge@yahoo.com