Taking Care of Cleats
Here’s a seven (7) step method of keeping your cleats ready and in good condition for years.
1.) When you first get your cleats, dust them inside with a heavy sprinkle of talcum powder (baby powder). The talcum powder will act as a temporary barrier to block sweat fromyour feet. The talcum or baby powder will also keep your feet cool and comfortable even in the hottest weather.
2.) Avoid wearing gym socks. Gym socks are for sneakers and the like. They can also stretch your baseball shoes out of shape. This is especially the case at the back of the shoe where your heel is. Also, gym socks can make your feet sweat, excessively. Purchase at least four (4)pair of …Sanitary … socks as their called. Why Sanitary socks? Sanitary socks are just like the socks that you wear with your other SHOES. And your baseball shoes are just that – SHOES. The name Sanitary is probably derived from the color of the socks – stark white.
3.) In your equipment bag don’t forget to bring extra shoe laces. Try to purchase shoe laces like the ones that came with your spikes. It does make a difference.
4.) Purchase an extra inexpensive pair of baseball shoes – preferably with molded rubber bottoms as appose to expensive metal spikes. Use this pair of molded rubber spikes as your practice pair.
5.) After a game, use popsicle sticks or something similar to pick out the mud, infield dirt and grass from your spikes. Take your spikes off and insert a pair of shoe trees. The shoe trees will maintain the shape and fit that your use to. Then put your spikes into a plastic bag. You don’t want to wear your spikes into someone’s car. Why? More than likely the dirt that you have on your spikes will contain fleas, mites and their eggs. You don’t want to bring those parasites with you.
6.) When you get home or back to your dorm, remove your spikes and brush them off under cold water – but do not soak them. Then, wipe them off with an old towel and let them dry in a cool place, out of direct sun light. When their all dry, sprinkle the inside with talcum or baby powder, then reinsert a pair of shoe trees.
7.) At least twice during the playing season, saddle soap your spikes if their made of leather. And always saddle soap your spikes before you store them at the end of the season, if their made of leather. And again,
sprinkle the inside with powder and insert a pair of shoe trees.
I should note that serious players have more than just one pair of spikes. Different manufactures have different styles and fits. This fine tuning of a pitcher’s foundation (foot work) which includes both metal and molded spikes can be very expensive and should only be followed in the most competitive programs – amateur and pro alike.