The 5 Best Baseball Cleats for Youth in 2024

March 6, 2024
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choosing the best baseball cleats for youth

The best baseball cleats can help young players stay quick on their feet while providing flexibility and support. Players need proper baseball cleats for sudden bursts of movement, sliding, and muddy baseball fields.

Young players quickly outgrow their cleats, requiring parents to always be on the lookout for pairs that not only look good but feel good, too. Finding the right one can be challenging with the wide variety of cleats available. Even within brands, the comfort and fit of cleats can vary greatly.


Take the guesswork out of shopping for youth baseball cleats with our handy reviews.

Best Baseball Cleats for Youth in 2024

ProductOur Rating
Under Armour Boys Leadoff Low Junior Rubber Molded Baseball CleatCheck Price5/5
Guardian Baseball Youth Low Top Baseball CleatsCheck Price4.9/5
Mizuno Wave Lightrevo YouthCheck Price4.9/5
New Balance Kid’s 4040 V6 Molded Baseball ShoeCheck Price4.8/5
Adidas Boy’s Icon 7 Md Baseball ShoeCheck Price4.8/5

#1. Under Armour Boys Leadoff Low Junior Rubber Molded Baseball Cleat

Young players need comfortable and lightweight shoes. Under Armour is a well-known sports brand that pioneered performance apparel in the United States. Though it started as a brand for footballers, it expanded to include basketball and baseball in its lineup. 

The Under Armour Boys Leadoff Low Junior Rubber Molded Baseball Cleats are lightweight and durable shoes. The synthetic upper and perforations in the toe box add breathability, perfect for long and hot days under the sun. The overlay on the toe cap adds protection during sliding and sturdiness for long-lasting wear. 

A padded collar and heel and full-length EVA midsole allow maximum comfort even when running or standing for hours. The rubber molded cleats provide good traction even in rain or mud while remaining lightweight. 

These cleats come in many colors and can even fit girls for softball. The Under Armour Leadoff Low Junior Rubber Molded Baseball Cleats are a top pick with a reasonable price and superb comfort.

#2. Guardian Baseball Youth Low Top Baseball Cleats

Players with wide feet who enjoy a more lowkey design for their cleats will appreciate the Guardian Baseball Youth Low Top Baseball Cleats. With a mostly black colorway, these unisex cleats are engineered with a V-Cleat configuration. This allows players to have better leadoff, stopping, and cutting while getting ample ankle support.

These cleats have a lace-up, synthetic rubber upper design that supports the player’s ankle without sacrificing breathability. They have cushioned insoles that provide stability and comfort during long game days. The low-top design makes this shoe lightweight and doesn’t restrict ankle mobility.

The Guardian Baseball Youth Low Top Baseball Cleats’ toe box is nice and wide so that players get the most comfort. It also has a double-reinforced toe and a honeycomb heel guard for added protection. The 14-spike Fortex Grip ensures traction on all surfaces for the utmost safety and speed.

#3. Mizuno Wave Lightrevo Youth

Hailing from Osaka, Japan, Mizuno is a go-to brand for baseball equipment and apparel. They have high-quality gear for players of all ages. If your young player is looking for a pair of cleats with a Velcro closure, then look to the Mizuno Wave Lightrevo Youth cleats. 

These cleats have faux laces and a convenient Velcro strap to eliminate mid-inning shoe tying. The rubber-molded cleats provide traction on all types of fields. This shoe has Mizuno Wave technology, which provides stability while players swing or throw hard while reducing pressure on the foot. The EVA Midsole has just the right cushioning for ultimate comfort.

Mizuno is known for creating durable and lightweight shoes, so expect these shoes to be able to take a beating for multiple games and practice days. They’re low-top for improved mobility around the ankle but still have proper support. These are sleek shoes with a classic design and a wide enough toe box. However, if your player has extra wide feet, there are better options.

#4. New Balance Kid’s 4040 V6 Molded Baseball Shoe

Narrow-fitting cleats can be distracting for young players on the diamond. If you’re looking for cleats that are more forgiving for wide feet, try the New Balance Kid’s 4040 V6 Molde Baseball Shoe. It offers an energetic and comfortable fit with the player’s best interests.

The rubber molded cleats on this shoe provide excellent traction on dirt, grass, and turf surfaces. The REVlite midsole is lightweight but highly cushioned for a more responsive feel as players dart from base to base. The synthetic upper adds durability while remaining lightweight so players can be agile on the field.

The New Balance Kid’s 4040 V6 Molded Baseball Shoe is relatively affordable depending on the size. It comes in multiple colors for boys and girls, making it also a viable option for young softball players. When it comes to durability, these aren’t the best, as some players experienced damage after just a few months of wear. However, they’re at a great price point and might suit more recreational players.

#5. Adidas Boy’s Icon 7 Md Baseball Shoe

Another famous sports brand is Adidas, and its youth baseball cleats are a good choice for those with a smaller budget. The Adidas Boy’s Icon 7 Md Baseball Shoe has a lace closure for a secure and snug fit while remaining comfortable for players with narrow feet.

The textile upper and lining provide breathability and comfort for long game days. The Bounce midsole is highly cushioned to extend that comfort to the sole. The molded rubber cleats ensure traction on various surfaces, such as grass, dirt, and turf.

The pro of these Adidas Baseball Shoes is that they’re easier to clean than others and remain durable, especially for the price. Others even outgrow this shoe, yet it remains in pristine condition. The limited colorways still allow players to show off a bit of flair while on the diamond.

Buyer’s Guide to Baseball Cleats

#1. Types of Baseball Cleats

Metal Cleats

Metal cleats are a popular type of baseball cleats. They have advantages and weaknesses. One of the overwhelming benefits of using metal cleats is that they provide excellent support and traction.

Metal cleats dig into the ground, keeping your foot position firm and stable. This is advantageous for batters who want to hit the baseball without slipping or losing their balance.

The downside to this type of cleats is that when you have to move or change direction suddenly, metal cleats can cause injury to the ankles instead. Metal cleats can also wear down quickly or get damaged if used on surfaces other than dirt or grass. They’re also more challenging to walk with on surfaces like tiles or marble flooring.

Molded Plastic or Rubber Cleats

Rubber or plastic cleats are the next popular choice among youth players. These types of cleats often cost less than their metal counterparts.

Molded plastic or rubber cleats do not dig into the ground as much as metal cleats, so their grip is comparatively weaker. On the plus side, these cleats, being more lightweight, allow players to kick off from the ground quickly and with ease.

Players can quickly switch directions or run through soft surfaces like mud when wearing plastic or rubber cleats. It’s also much easier to walk on surfaces that aren’t grass or dirt with plastic or rubber cleats. Unlike metal cleats, rubber, and plastic don’t wear down as quickly on surfaces like tiles or pavement.

Turf Cleats

Turf cleats are more suited for practice or sessions at training facilities rather than games. They keep your foot close to the ground, providing better stability and minimizing the risk of injury.

Youth players typically prefer turf cleats when they need comfortable and functional footwear without maximum performance. This makes turf cleats ideal for training sessions.

#2. The Player’s Position

The player’s position is one of the most important considerations when choosing the right type of cleats. Each position has different requirements.

For instance, if you are running between bases, you need explosive power and agility without the risk of injury. Similarly, if you are an outfielder, you need good ground clearance. Here are our recommendations for cleats based on a player’s position on the field. 

Infielders: Infielders typically run on a portion of the field where the ground is more compact. This means they should wear a type of cleat that gathers up as little sand as possible, allowing them to move around quickly and easily. For this reason, molded rubber or plastic cleats are typically the best option for young infielders.

Outfielders: Metal cleats are a good option for outfielders. They let outfielders dig into and out of the ground quickly, which is an advantage, especially when outfielders have to chase after fly balls.

Pitchers: Cleats are one of the most important pieces of a pitcher’s kit. The right pair of cleats helps pitchers stay stable and maintain their grip on the ground when pitching at exceptionally high speeds. Metal cleats are a good choice in this scenario as they dig into the ground and offer maximum stability.

#3. High, Low, or Mid Tops

High tops: As the name suggests, high tops feature ankle supports that extend beyond the ankle. They provide extra support for players, helping them keep their ankles free from injuries. They can also slow down a player and are not preferable if speed is your priority.

Low tops: Low tops feature low ankle supports, allowing players to make rapid lateral movements easily. Low tops are preferable where speed is required, although they minimize ankle support and increase the chances of injury.

Mid tops: Mid tops balance ankle support and speed. They allow for easy movement on the field while significantly reducing the risk of ankle injury.

#4. Fit

It is important to get the size right for baseball cleats. If the cleats are too tight, they make your feet uncomfortable and feel stifled.  They can also cause pain and foot conditions like plantar fasciitis or blisters.

If the cleats are too loose, they will get in the way of running and slow you down. As a general rule of thumb, if you have to choose between slightly loose or tight cleats, go with the somewhat tight ones.

Most cleats that feel a little tight will get broken in with time and expand, fitting your feet more accurately. This is why it is okay if you get a pair of cleats that are a bit tight.

#5. Materials

Most baseball cleats are made with a combination of different materials. Popular materials include synthetic leather and mesh.

Synthetic leather adds durability and resilience to the shoes, while mesh makes them more breathable. Together, they offer cleats that deliver good performance and last long.

Genuine leather is also used in the construction of baseball cleats. However, it costs significantly more compared to synthetic leather.

#6. Lightweight

Cleats come in a variety of materials and designs, which is why there is a significant weight range for baseball cleats.

Generally, lightweight cleats enable faster running on the field. In contrast, heavier cleats may hinder your reaching your peak speed.

Low-top cleats are typically lightweight, but they offer no ankle protection. In contrast, high-top cleats are heavier but provide good ankle support. It would help to weigh these factors before determining the right weight for your baseball cleats.

#7. Comfortable

Turf cleats are the clear winner in terms of comfort. These sleek shoes are specifically designed to deliver maximum comfort for your feet and ankles while allowing you to train on the field.

However, these cleats are not suitable for an actual baseball game. Molded plastic or rubber cleats are considered the most comfortable for actual games.

This is because these cleats have evenly distributed cleats on their underside, keeping the pressure even on your foot. This keeps you stable and sprint-ready at the same time. Plastic or rubber cleats are also lighter, making them more comfortable to wear and run with.

#8. Sole

The sole of a baseball cleat consists of several parts. These include the insole, the midsole, the soleplate, and the actual studs or cleats on the underside.

Manufacturers typically use highly durable TPU plastic for the soleplate to provide a reliable surface for attaching the studs to the shoe and to withstand most wear and tear during baseball games. 

When selecting the right baseball cleat, ensure the soleplate is highly durable and check if it accommodates removable cleats or studs or if the studs are permanently affixed. Soleplates that support removable studs allow the use of plastic and metal studs.

#9. Studs

The studs on the sole are most commonly made of metal, plastic, or rubber. As discussed above, metal studs help you dig into and out of the ground quickly, giving you maximum traction.

In contrast, plastic or rubber studs let you change direction quickly and are more forgiving on your ankles. Determine the type you prefer, then ensure the sole you have shortlisted supports it.

#10. Breathability and Odor-resistance

Breathability and odor resistance are essential when buying a pair of baseball cleats. Breathability allows air to circulate on your feet while wearing the cleats, keeping them dry and reducing odors. The material and design of the cleats play significant roles in their breathability and ability to resist odors.

Genuine leather generally offers better breathability compared to synthetic leather, which is why manufacturers often incorporate mesh into synthetic designs. Ventilation holes in the shoe’s upper part ensure breathability by letting air flow in and out. 

These holes are particularly beneficial in summer, helping to keep your feet cool and dry. Adequate ventilation and breathability are key to the comfort of baseball cleats, especially in warmer weather.

#11. Cushioning

The degree of cushioning in baseball cleats depends on several features, including the insole, midsole, and heel sections. The insole, the surface your feet rest on inside the cleats, can sometimes be removed and replaced with one of your choice, allowing for better orthotic support.

Midsoles add a layer of cushioning under your feet. Their thickness and design can vary across different models. When choosing midsoles, aim for a balance between cushioning and thickness, as overly thick midsoles may add unwanted weight to the cleats.

Some baseball cleats also have heel cushioning, which provides an extra layer to absorb shock. This feature enhances comfort as you run or slide across the field, making the overall experience more enjoyable.

#12. Colors

Baseball studs are available in a wide range of colors. Most models are typically offered in 5 to 10 colors, making it easier for you to find a color you like in a model that you have shortlisted.

Choosing the right color is entirely up to your preferences. However, it is advised that you consider the uniform you wear during the game when finalizing the color. You may also consult the team coach for any applicable regulations or requirements.

FAQ

#1. How many spikes should baseball cleats have?

The number of spikes in baseball cleats is not an important factor. Instead, you should focus on the type of spikes you choose—metal, plastic, or rubber.

The more spikes your cleats have, the more firmly your shoes can grip the ground. But the downside is that a grip that is too strong will prevent you from sprinting quickly or rapidly changing directions while running.

Your cleats should ideally have enough spikes to keep you firm, offer good traction, and help you stay nimble.

#2. Do I need to break in my baseball cleats?

Breaking in your baseball cleats before you use them on the field is vitally important. Cleats that are not broken can feel too tight and obstruct your running, or they can be too loose, in which case friction can cause painful foot blisters.

To break in your new pair of cleats, apply a layer of leather protector. Once dry, wear the shoes with extra-thick socks and soak them in warm water. Then, take them off and let them dry. When they are about to dry, stuff them with newspaper to keep them in shape.

Another way to stretch out too-snug baseball cleats is to wear extra-thick socks with them and heat them with a blow dryer. This should achieve the same effect without needing to wet the shoes.

#3. How do I clean my baseball cleats?

To maintain the cleanliness of your white baseball cleats game after game:

  1. Perform timely maintenance.
  2. Remove mud and dirt by knocking the cleats together. Then, use a toothbrush to gently apply mild soap to any dirty spots.
  3. Wipe away the soap with a damp cloth soaked in warm water.
  4. Allow the cleats to air dry and, if possible, remove the insoles to wash them separately.
  5. Check if your baseball cleats are machine washable. If so, place them in a netted laundry bag and machine wash them separately from delicate clothing.

#4. Are soccer and baseball cleats the same?

Soccer and baseball cleats are similar, although both have some notable differences. In general, you can use soccer cleats for baseball, but you can’t use baseball cleats in a soccer game.

Conclusion

Purchasing the right pair of cleats is incredibly important for youth players. The right cleats fit snugly onto the feet without discomfort and help players achieve better traction and acceleration on the field.

However, you need to consider many factors when trying to find the right cleats. As stated in the guide above, these factors include the construction material, size, cushioning, weight, sole, ankle protection, and many others. It may seem overwhelming to consider so many factors when purchasing cleats. But the fact is, the more factors you consider, the more likely you are to purchase a pair of cleats that is a perfect fit for you.

Ultimately, go with a pair of cleats that feel right on your feet. They are the right choice if they feel comfortable without being too loose and letting you run, change direction, or rapidly start and stop sprinting.

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