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Show It Off: #10 South Carolina Gamecocks

Black Fitted

Since the year 2000, Ray Tanner’s South Carolina Gamecocks have been arguably the best program in college baseball, winning consecutive College World Series in 2010 and 2011, and falling just short of a three-peat in 2012, losing to the Arizona Wildcats in the championship.  During that span they have made 6 CWS appearances, reaching 11 Super Regionals.

With success comes spoils.  Premium Rawlings leather as far as the eye can see.  Team logo custom cleats from Under Armour, which even the pros don’t get.  Generous helpings of swag.  Check it out here, and thanks to Zach at @SCBaseballEquip for putting together some really good shots for us.  Keep up with the Gamecocks on Twitter.

Love the South Carolina state flag on the back of those hats.

Shop the Rawlings S90 Helmets here.  (90 stands for 90 mph)

We can all agree, Rawlings knows how to make a fielding glove.  But what’s the deal with the batting gloves?  I feel like they are still trying to sell off a design they produced in 1995.  Step it up Rawlings.

Love those turfs though.

UA Deception DT Cleats

UA Yard Cleats

UA Yard Turfs

Rawlings Workhorse Batting Gloves

Rawlings 950X Catcher’s Equipment

Rawlings 5150 BBCOR Bat

Rawlings Trio BBCOR Bat

Pro Helmet Decals

And here’s a little taster of the sweet leather:

Absolute gems.  I want to swan dive into that cart of Rawlings gloves like Scrooge McDuck.

Aside from the gear, I would be remiss to leave this batflip by freshman bopper Alex Destino off SC’s “Show It Off” feature.  May it live in batflip lore for all eternity:

You can actually see the bat at the bottom left of the screen as the camera follows the ball into the next town…

Here you can see the technique:

And here’s the AND1 Mixtape reaction from his teammates postgame:

So the obvious question being, is the Jason-Giambi-toothpick batflip too much, not enough, or just right?

Here’s a more understated Giambi for reference, though his 14th inning walk-off vs the Twins in ’02 was far more majestic (no video/gif of it):

Show It Off: Auburn University

auburn-show-it-off

Auburn gives us a peek at the life and locker of an SEC ballplayer, and its NOT TOO SHABBY.  Thanks to Andrew Dewing and the staff there.  Follow Auburn baseball on Twitter and for more gear, follow @wdebaseball365.

But first a little Auburn Baseball History 101 taught by WPW:

Bo Jackson swinging a lead pipe that he wrestled away from a junkyard dog.

The Big Hurt

Tim Hudson.  A guy who’s been taking the ball every 5th day for 150 years.

Watch the last HR if you can, tell me if he jumped a fastball there.

Dirtdog Josh Donaldson, a WPW staple.

Any questions?

Auburn-easton-glove

You’ll see a lot very nice looking Easton gloves in this post.  The Auburn styles are customs, but you can shop Easton’s Pro Series style of gloves, which seem comparable.

@wdebaseball365 gave us an awesome look at #Auburn OFer Sam Gillikan’s @eastonbaseball1 H-Web. #WarEagle #Easton #wpw

A photo posted by WhatProsWear.com (@whatproswear) on

The Auburn player who wears this glove, Sam Gillikin, mentioned in the comments that it “doesn’t come close to the SSK I used with the white sox.”  I followed up but haven’t heard back yet.  If Sam responds I’ll update.

Shoes:

UA Spine Trainer

UA Speedform Apollo

UA Spine Venom Workout Shoe

UA Speedform Gemini

UA Deception DT Cleats

UA Yard Low

Lets take those jerseys to a vote.  My allegiance rests with the throwbacks.

Shop the similar Pro Series gloves here.

UA Yard Undeniable batting gloves

Thanks again to Andrew for the photography.  Follow Auburn University baseball.

Superhero Madison Bumgarner Signs with Mizuno

madison-bumgarner-mizuno-gmp100bk

According to Madison Bumgarner‘s WPW profile, he’s a Rawlings guy.  Not anymore, says Mizuno in a press release today.

The Mizuno Pro Limited GMP100BK (available at that link) is masterpiece of a baseball glove, and Mizuno tells us that this will be World Series legend Madison Bumgarner’s game glove.

madison-bumgarner-mizuno-gmp100-bk

While a $500 pricetag makes the Pro Limited line of gloves the most expensive on the market, Mizuno’s Off-season Conditioning Program “allows for one free repair and recondition,” a really nice perk that extends the life of a glove you’re probably not going to want to ever die.

Here’s the menu of services available with the repair/recondition program:

We’ll reserve our profile update until we see it on the field, but expect to see MadBum with Mizuno for the foreseeable future, as Mizuno calls it a “multi-year deal.”

Should he have stayed with Rawlings?

New Balance Minimus Metal Cleat Review

new balance minimus

Over the long, desolate, baseball-impoverished winter, New Balance dropped an innovative new cleat that caught my eye.  The Minimus line of New Balance footwear is designed to give a “close-to-barefoot” experience—that might be a preference for runners, but to ballplayers its a myth.  Not once in my life have I put on a cleat and had any doubt that I was wearing a baseball cleat.  You come to expect the stiffness, the heaviness, that’s what a baseball cleat is supposed to be, right?

new balance minimus white

Not this one.  My first impression with the Minimus was just putting them on and walking around my apartment, and right away they felt like nothing I’d ever worn.  They felt so low to the ground (4mm drop) that I honestly felt like I was wearing tennis shoes.  They are as light as New Balance technology could reasonably allow (9.8 oz), and the feel reminded me of an adidas Samba (soccer turfs).

I took them out for a couple of practices so far, and coming from the original 4040 which was already pretty damn good for ranging in center field, the Minimus feels extraordinarily agile.  The combination of a remarkably thin “FantomFit” upper and a very low profile tongue creates a form-fit that I’ve never felt before in a baseball cleat.  As far as top speed and change of direction, I doubt there is a better shoe on the market.

I haven’t had a chance to pitch with them yet, but my instincts tell me that these probably aren’t the best shoe for going the distance, just based on the streamlined design prioritizing speed over support.  However, they are sufficiently supportive for a position player, though I can’t speak on how it would handle the rigors of a pro, college, or even high school schedule.

Overall, I am a big fan of New Balance’s approach with the Minimus cleat.  When you put it on, you will feel like you’re wearing a low-profile turf/training shoe, and the Minimus performs just the same.  If you’re a guy who uses his legs and athleticism to get an advantage on the diamond, the Minimus is for you.

Shop the Minimus here.

Show It Off: LSU Tigers 2015

Showing it off in the literal sense

LSU starts off the season as the #2 team in Baseball America’s national top 25 (behind National Champ Vandy), and the perennial contender knows as well as anybody how to show it off.  This is LSU’s second “S.I.O.” and you can check out their 2014 feature (which has more of the facilities) at this link.

I want to sincerely thank Spencer at LSU for putting this together for us.  Follow LSU Equipment on Twitter for more looks as the season progresses and beyond.

Nike is customizing the MVP Pro 2/MVP Elite 2 silhouette for its top schools this season, and LSU gets one of the best treatments we’ve seen.

Nike Air MVP Pro 2

Nike Air Max MVP Elite 2

Nike Lunar MVP Pregame 2 Turf

A few fresh customs from Wilson.  Some really nice work from the guys on these.  They customized theirs at WilsonCustomGloves.com.

OF #6 Andrew Stevenson’s Wilson A2000 1799

P #67 Jake Latz A2000 B212/CK22 (same model, Kershaw’s CK22 being  11.75, B212 12 inches)

C #2 Michael Papierski’s Catcher’s Mitt (didn’t get model info before we published)

OF #9 Mark Laird’s Wilson A2000 1799

This is the part of the feature when your feelings of awe turn to jealousy.  Don’t worry, its perfectly normal.  LSU is lapping just about everybody in the Swag Department and there’s not much you can do about it.

Wilson Promotion Catcher’s Gear (Homerun Monkey has some really nice colors there)

DeMarini Stadium Batting Gloves

DeMarini Digi Camo Batting Gloves

DeMarini Voodoo Overlord FT – Customizable at DemariniCustomBats.com.

Some miscellaneous items here…  Opening Day in the clubhouse (which happens to be today 2.13.15).  The bat knob decals are from Pro Helmet Decals.  Sick Nike jersey.  In that last photo of the door decal, I don’t even know what purpose those plaques on the left actually serve but I need them.

Nobody does it better than the Purple and Gold.  Check out last year’s “Show It Off” for some more photos and don’t forget to follow @LSUBaseballEQ for more LSU gear.

Rawlings Leather Shipping Out for Spring Training

Adam Jones

You may have noticed @RawlingsSports throwing up a few posts with a peek at some new leather for the season.  Well, I wanted to see if we could get a better look at these beauties so I asked Rawlings if they could send through the raw photos of each of the gloves to show you guys.  They came through for us and here you have a nice league-wide view of “The Finest in the Field” for 2015.

Here are the game gloves we have for the players we’ve profiled before, regardless of what is shown here (a lot of these guys are just getting the same pattern with fresh hide).  If its available we linked to it:

Xander Bogaerts – Rawlings Heart of the Hide PRODJ2 w/ H-Web 11.5″

Tim Lincecum – Rawlings Pro Preferred PROS991BCBR (Lincecum wears a few different gloves)

Kolten Wong – Rawlings Pro Preferred PROS12ICPR

Jacoby Ellsbury – Rawlings Heart of the Hide JE-46

Eric Hosmer – Rawlings Heart of the Hide PRODCTSL-125

Curtis Granderson – Rawlings PROS303

Buster Posey – Rawlings Buster Posey Game Day Model (PROCM43BP28)

Alex Gordon – Rawlings Heart of the Hide PRO303-6JBT

Adam Jones – Rawlings PRO303-6SLM

Salvador Perez – All-Star CM3000XSBT (not what you see in the photo obviously)