If you’re a last minute Christmas shopper like me…
or just feeling stuck, trying to think about what to get your baseball-obsessed kid for Christmas,
…I thought I’d share a few of my favorite things to get the ideas flowing.
Most of these are the things that are tried-and-true for me. I’ve used them for years, so I know their quality is consistent.
BONUS – Even if you’ve already heard me talk about some of these thing (like I said, I’ve used them for years), you’ll want to save this email because I have some *NEW PBI-exclusive discount codes* to share (save $).
By “new” I mean that I just finished negotiating these discounts for you yesterday, so they’re fresh and hot off the presses.
So here’s my list of best baseball Christmas gifts for 2017… which actually just means my favorite things in each category:
1. Best Wood Bats
My two favorites are:
- B45 for birch (my game bats); use the code PBIHOLIDAYS20 for 20% off . To get the most out of your 20% off discount, I recommend combining a bat with gift ideas #5 and #11 below. At $200 you get free shipping. Here is the holiday ordering deadlines for B45
- Phoenix bats for maple or ash. You can use the code “pbi” for 10% off your Phoenix bats. They have options to receive by Christmas as late as 12/19, but the deadline for standard production and standard shipping is 12/4.
2. Best Baseball Glove
You could spend $500 on a top-of-the-line glove, but my gamer glove I use at shortstop, old faithful, is a Rawlings Heart of the Hide, which is mid-range in price. Another good one is the Wilson A2000. Won’t break the bank, but will break in perfectly and last a couple years (or longer, depending on how much you play and how well you care for it). Many professional players use these, so you’ll be in good company.
If you aren’t sure what size glove you need, click here for our guide to glove sizes.
3. Best batting gloves
I recommend Franklin batting gloves. Franklin makes a good glove… and cheap batting gloves are the worst. THE WORST. They stick to the bat – which is not good since you want the glove to hug your hand like a 2nd skin – and they also flake off so they fall apart much more quickly.
Get good batting gloves and take care of them so they get you through the season (Lexol if the leather gets stiff from sweat).
Lot’s of options on Amazon Prime’s free 2 day shipping, so definitely order online rather than going to the nearest big box store where you know you’ll end up buying that $10 pair (Don’t do it! Order online for the better quality and you’ll thank me later).
4. Bat grip
5. Best baseball sunglasses
There are several brands that pro baseball players use for sunglasses. However, last year I found my favorite of all time, for both (1) clear vision on the field and (2) protection for eyes. Click here for the post on best baseball sunglasses.
6. Best Learning resources
Here are few options that have made a major impact on my game and career.
- Best book I’ve ever read on the mental side of hitting – Heads up baseball by Ken Revizza (be sure to get the 2.0, the latest version).
- Bobby Tewksbury’s hitting videos – This guy changed the way I hit back in 2013, which I think was a critical step for me getting back to the big leagues. He’s the real deal.
- Baseball Hitting Drills for a Batting Tee – And this is one that I put together. It’s an actual book, but it also has 20 online videos that you can unlock for free when you get the book. It’s an excellent tool for Dad’s looking to work with their sons, or for coaches. (Just FYI, this is also probably the last month it’s going to be available at that price)
7. Batting tee
There are several good options for tees, but my favorite by far is the new (ish) Heavy Tee by Tanner Tees. The new base is made to sit on ANY kind of ground… flat or on a home plate. It’s the first I’ve ever seen that you can actually use with a home plate, which is very convenient as a visual during drills.
It’s also very stable (no wobbling or “tee walking” when you hit), is easy to travel with, and will last forever.
Or for a less expensive batting tee, go with this one, which is the most used by professional teams for good reason.
8. Sock net
For hitting or throwing practice… a must have. Best price for quality is this one… literally half the price of Bownet and still awesome.
9. Bounce back / rebounder net
This was literally my favorite thing when I was a kid. Hours of fun and practice… in your yard, garage, or basement. Awesome. For size (it’s huge) and sturdiness, I recommend this one.
10. Garage net
A cool idea for the kid who has tons of energy and mom and dad don’t feel like driving anywhere is the Hit It Sports Net (Fair warning – I haven’t tried this one myself. Just thought it was a great idea.)
11. Baseball swag
Every kid likes to feel confident on the field, and swag is a way of showing personality. It can be a necklace, a piece of equipment in a stand-out color, an arm sleeve, or whatever. Here’s a few options that won’t break the bank:
- Phiton necklace
- Arm sleeve
- Evoshield – Elbow pads, wrist gards, etc. that actually look good
- Lizard skin bat grip