Despite the fact that turf is much more common today than it was back in the old days, it can still be quite a shock to the system when you turn up and realize it’s a turf field that you’ll be playing on. Even if you already know it’s a turf field, you might be a little intimidated, especially if you have never played on one before. However, you shouldn’t have such reservations, and that is because we are going to be taking a look at turf shoes today. The right pair of turf shoes will make your life much, much easier, and they will allow you to get the most performance out of your game without tearing up the field itself! We’ll be looking at the ins and outs of turf shoes, answering any and all of your questions, and then looking at reviews on the best pairs available in 2019. So, let’s get started!
Top Baseball Turf Shoes Comparison Chart
|Name||Adult or Youth||Brand||Price|
|1. New Balance Kids’ TY4040 Turf||Youth||New Balance||$$$$|
|2. Adidas Speed Trainer 3||Youth||Adidas||$$$|
|3. 3N2 Mofo Turf Trainer||Youth||3N2||$$$$$|
|4. New Balance Men’s 3000v4 Turf||Adult||New Balance||$$$|
|5. Under Armour Men’s Ultimate Turf Trainer||Adult||Under Armour||$$$|
|6. Boombah Men’s Catalyst Turf Shoes||Adult||Boombah||$$|
|7. Mizuno Men’s 9 Spike Advanced Erupt 3||Adult||Mizuno||$$$$|
|8. Nike Men’s Force Zoom Trout 4 Trainers||Adult||Nike||$$$|
Baseball Turf Shoes Buying Guide
Can’t I Just Wear Normal Cleats?
This is simply a major no-no. Let’s say, for example, that you are practicing indoors because it is raining. Would you even be asking if you could wear your regular metal baseball cleats? If the answer is yes, you need an examination. Just like a hardwood floor in a gym, turf is a special beast all to itself. You wouldn’t take your tennis shoes on to the lush, grassy diamond close to your house, so you certainly wouldn’t do a similar thing by wearing cleats on a turf field. A turf field is going to tear up a great deal if you are wearing those types of cleats on it. Even if that weren’t the case, you wouldn’t get nearly the same amount of traction that you get from a pair of turf shoes, so you’d be losing out there anyway!
Tread & Traction
Speaking of traction, the tread is a vital part of any turf shoe. Instead of using spikes, as ordinary baseball cleats do, turf shoes utilize different sorts of tread to get the job done. In normal baseball cleats you see metal and molded types, with some being longer and larger and others being smaller. This is much the same with turf shoes. There are some options involved, and not everything is going to be one size fits all. This is great news for you, the player, because it gives you the chance to pick something that is perfect for your purposes. It means you can tailor your footwear your position and your playing style, and it also means you can get the most comfort possible. There are two main types to keep your eyes on and watch for.
It’s a situation that is very similar to what golf has seen in their footwear. In the beginning, golf shoes, just like baseball turf shoes, came with literal treads on them. While you can’t say that they are spikes, because they are not, they do have a raised appearance. This means that they will raise you up a little bit, with most shoes that use this sort of design having a number of them. All sorts of different shapes can be used. They can be round, they can be square. You name it, and it can be it. These typically have better grip than those that don’t have tread, but it also depends on the kind of surface you’re on. Artificial turf has changed a lot from the days of the old killer AstroTurf of old.
Because of that, turf shoes that don’t have any noticeable treads have become more and more popular. This increase in popularity is due to the fact that they are lighter in weight and also can be generally more comfortable to wear than the ones with treads to them. With no noticeable tread to them, people will wonder how grip is provided. Think of golf or indoor soccer shoes. A lot of those also don’t have tread, yet they keep their athletes on their feet and performing at their highest levels. Some might not like how they don’t have as much grip, on some older and rougher surfaces, but if you are a pitcher, for example, you’d love them as you don’t have to worry about things getting caught on the rubber as you sling the ball across the plate!
High, Medium, or Low Shoe Height
Just as is the case with normal cleats, the cut of the turf shoe is something important for you to take note of. The cut, or top, is the word used to describe how much protection you are going to get in the ankle and heel area. This is a very big deal, and there are positives and negatives that you will have to take into account.
Low Top Turf Shoes
The most prevalent type of turf shoes to be found are going to be low tops today. Because so many players are using them around the clubhouse, in the dugout, and on the field before games, and are thus a little more leisurely, they don’t need a ton of protection and support. Low tops are super comfortable and very flexible, allowing your foot to move around just about as naturally as possible in a pair of shoes. However, there is not a lot of ankle support and sometimes you don’t feel locked in very well if a pair isn’t up to par. If you find this to be the case, then you should find something else. You also should do so if you have had injuries before, too. In most cases, the low top is going to be the lightest of the three options.
High Top Turf Shoes
The high top is another choice that you could make, and despite its extra bulk and lack of flexibility, it can do a great job for someone that has had injuries before or wants to prevent them as best they can. The high top is going to make the ankles feel a lot more secure, but it does come at the cost of restricting you quite a bit. This is just a natural trade off that you are going to have to accept if you wear them. This type of shoe is normally heavier than others, for obvious reasons, and as such, it’s tough to find turf shoes that are made with them right now. But it can be done if that is what you need.
Mid Top Turf Shoes
In the middle of the road is the mid cut shoe. The mid cut, like the low cut, is also popular nowadays because it is good for both in-game play as well as before the game and inside the clubhouse, too. The mid cut seeks to give you a blend of the two previous types. While it is not overly protective, it also gives you some support. While it is not super flexible, it’s also more freeing than the high cut would be. Because of this, it’s just a good all-around turf shoe that would leave most people, with the exception of the speediest guys, happy with their choice.
We mentioned protection already, and that one is obvious. It refers to helping you out in the event of getting hit by a ball or running into another player. If a shoe or cleat is flimsy, then it won’t have much protection and you won’t be guarded int the case of such an accident. Closely related is support. This concept, as discussed before, is about locking the ankles and feet into place mostly. It’s about making sure that there isn’t going to be too much and also not enough give to the shoes.
Shoes that have too much give can be seen if you bend them and they just fold over upon themselves. Shoes that don’t have enough won’t budge. Even breaking them in might not help very much, if at all. What you want is something in between, that way you are able to stand on your feet for long periods of time. Baseball is a game of leisure, and as such, sometimes you will be standing a lot. Since it’s not perpetual motion, you need something that is going to help you stand in place as well as make those hard charges around the base path or as you seek to catch a fly ball.
Cushion is another term that is interesting to note, but it should not be confused with comfort. Cushion sounds like comfort, but it’s really meant to mean something else entirely. Cushioning refers to the stuff that the shoe manufacturer puts into the shoes in order to help give them additional support. A lot of times, this is the invisible parts of the shoe that can’t be seen. For example, there are skateboard shoes that have little to no cushion. You can’t see that. Take a shoe, though, that does have great cushioning, and you still won’t be able to see it.
Most of the time that is true, but sometimes you see technologies used in the rear of the shoes that look like bubbles. Nike does this. Another possible way to see cushioning is if the shoe is a little bit wider. Companies have started to make shoes wider in the middle part of the foot in order to disperse the impact some and to give you a broader base of support. The two go together like peanut butter and jelly. Lastly, is the concept of comfort.
Comfort is the overall sum of these parts. Many assume that your shoes are always going to feel awesome if you put them on and feel great immediately. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Because of the things we mentioned, a pair of shoes can go from comfy to terrible quickly. Without support and cushioning, those awesome memory foam inserts will be meaningless. So, waiting to judge comfort is always a smart decision to make before you rush and assume it will be the best possible choice you could make.
Getting the right size and fit should never be underestimated. Just like with any shoes and just like you would find with baseball cleats, you need to appropriately size yourself or your child in order to make sure the utmost performance is gotten out of them. Here are some ways that you can do just that.
In Person Fit
Try shoes on in person. This is tough to do for some, and it is true that there are MANY more choices online. But the internet makes it tougher to send things back. Even if you do decide to buy online, you can get a grasp on how certain shoes fit you and what you like and dislike.
Understand Your Foot Size
Shoes should be tried on after you have exercised or late in the day. As you stand, run, and walk, your feet are going to begin to swell. This can throw off your sizing and make you uncomfortable as the day goes on. You can avoid that by factoring in and not forgetting to consider that.
Toe Sizing at the Front of the Shoe
Give yourself some wiggle room, but not too much. Some players like to have a full thumb, some like to have about half of one between the toes and the end of the shoes. Either one can be good, but we don’t suggest that you use anymore. Not enough room to maneuver could cause you to develop blisters and hurt really badly, making you not want to play. Too much room could literally see your shoes fall off of you and can cause all sorts of injuries to occur.
Fit to Current Size
Youth players should not be sized to “grow into.” This is a dangerous concept that is not a new idea by any stretch of the imagination. It’s understandable to want to save money, but you are sacrificing your child’s potential and could also set them up to get hurt, too. There are shoes out there that fit into your budget, and most turf shoes are going to be much cheaper than cleats. So you can avoid that here.
Turf Shoe Width
Make sure and factor in the width of the shoes. Some companies are just narrow in the toe area, while others happen to be quite wide. If you have narrow feet, you might have trouble with really wide shoes, while those with wide feet will be left extremely frustrated with narrow shoes. A general rule that you should keep in mind is to stick with a certain brand once you find that you like them. It’s hard to jump from one brand to another, and typically you don’t see shoes from within the same brand being all that different in how they fit you.
Maintain Your Shoes
A quick tip to know is that if you want to better maintain you turf shoes is that you shouldn’t be taking them off and putting them on haphazardly. I have been tying and untying my shoes lately, and it has really decreased the level of wear on them. When you sling shoes off and on, it’s going to erode them much quicker than they would otherwise. If you’re already hard on shoes, some people just are, then you are going to lose a lot of durability as a result of that. It might seem silly, but it really does make a difference and it could end up saving you a lot of money if you don’t have to buy two or three pairs each offseason. They also will support you much better if you take the time to tie them up properly, as you will feel much more locked in and ready to go as a result. It’s the little things that add up on the diamond, and off it you can do them to in order to help increase your performance level. No detail is too small, and this shouldn’t be overlooked.
Youth vs Adult
In truth, turf shoes for baseball aren’t all that different between adults and youth. The only thing that really stands out is going to be the sizes, obviously. The width might also be affected, but other than that there isn’t much to point out. Unlike with regular cleats, there won’t be any metal ones available, so it’s not like only adults can use certain types. Instead, they are really the same, with the only differences being the sizes and the prices. Prices are going to be higher for adults in very general terms due to needing to use more materials in order to make the shoes. Because it is tougher to find sizes for younger players in this area, there will be less of them reviewed than for the adults. With that said, let’s get to the reviews!
Best Youth Baseball Turf Shoe Reviews
New Balance Kids’ TY4040 Turf
Coming in five different colors and with a really nice style as well, the TY4040 from New Balance looks great and feels great for the youth player. Made for players between the ages of 4 and 12, this offering has a wide range of sizes that are sure to make you happy. Using synthetic materials and a rubber sole that has a lot of tiny ‘ball’ like substances, these shoes look great and are going to last quite a long time.
They don’t cost all that much, either, and what you get is an All-American made pair of shoes. The tops of them are laced with mesh, which is going to help aid in the breathability of the foot, which is never a bad thing to have on those stuffy days in the dog days of summer. These are a low top, but seeing as how they are meant for kids, that shouldn’t be too much of a detriment as most kids could use the extra speed and won’t have had problems with injuries in the past. Using EVA in the midsole, it helps to absorb shocks and is also quite comfy on the inside, giving support and comfort all at the same time.
One thing to keep in mind is that they run a slight bit small, so that could be a negative for you if you are ordering online. Other than that, these are a real gem to unearth.
- Sizes for all kinds of ages
- Very nice looks
- Extremely good traction
Adidas Speed Trainer 3
Coming with a plethora of colors and in various designs as well, these shoes from Adidas are going to help you stand out while also being extremely comfortable on the field. These Speed Trainer 3’s use small triangular shaped treads to them and are all over the shoes, spread out evenly. Pairing that along with a heel counter, which takes the back of the foot and places it into the back of the shoe, makes them great when it comes to lateral movement and support.
This is a great shoe for a pitcher because of the toe cap at the front of the shoes, which helps reduce the amount of wear and tear there and will also offer a bit of added protection should you get stepped on or hit by the ball. The upper part of the shoe is made out of synthetics, but it also has mesh included as well to help you air out a little bit. The sole is rubber, which is going to give you both durability and flexibility, as well as obviously giving you good traction.
An added feature that you’ll like is the Nubuck they’ve used on the sides of the laces, which helps them stay in place a little better, which is never a bad thing for kids. The one big problem with these is that they don’t have sizes for the tiny kids, so if that is what you are looking for, then you might be a tad bit disappointed. They also promote you to walk so that you foot rolls to the inside, which can cause issues down the road.
- Ton of different, awesome colors and designs
- Great for lateral movements
- Very comfy
- Causes the wearer to pronate
- Not many sizes for the smaller kids
3N2 Mofo Turf Trainer
These shoes just say class when you look at them. They aren’t flashy, but they just look like something an experienced Major Leaguer would wear to match his team’s colors. Using genuine leather, unlike so many nowadays, these are going to be absolutely wonderful on your feet as far as comfort goes. With a bit of a toe guard in that area as well as having the top of the toes off the ground, it means the pressure dissipates and is put on the rest of the foot evenly. Leather is already flexible, but the fact that they have used a TPU shank on the bottom means that the shoes are even more flexible and that they stabilize you.
The midsole area has been made with backs and knees in mind, taking more of that pressure of you in a positive way. If you are looking to find a lightweight trainer for your youth ball player, then this is definitely an option to consider, especially given the very affordable price and all that you get with it. The bottoms have lots of small raised circles to them, with them spread out some all over the shoes. Like the previous Adidas pair, the sizes don’t go as low as some might like, so that is a problem. The other issue that you might encounter is that of durability. You can’t expect everything from them, and it appears that is their weakest area, which should be no surprise given the price of them.
- Toe guarded
- Just a classy looking pair of shoes
- Great price
- Not many sizes for the younger and smaller bunch
- Durability is a big question mark for them
Best Adult Turf Baseball Shoes Reviews
New Balance Men’s 3000v4 Turf
New Balance has outdone itself here with this pair of turf shoes. There are so many nice colors to pick from that it’s hard to choose. Coming with great traction that is quite similar to the kids’ choice earlier, these shoes have a lot about them to keep you happy. With synthetic and mesh used in the upper, you’re going to be comfortable, flexible, not sweat as much, and you will have something that is also durable.
Using a low top design, these are very freeing and will leave your feet happy if you emphasize speed and flexibility. The outsoles of the shoes (on the edges) have pronounced designs, which are not there just for looks but rather are there to help give added cushioning to you. Including an insert that can be removed and even a wide option, this is a shoe that gives you all sorts of choices and cannot be overlooked. One thing that is a little bit of a bummer is that the price is a little high compared to others. They do also run a little small, so that is something to consider.
- Many colors that match college and pro teams
- Outsoles give additional cushioning
- Wide sizes available
- A little more expensive
- Runs a little bit small
Under Armour Men’s Ultimate Turf Trainer
UA is attempting to take over the market in all sports, so it’s no surprise to see them on the list here at #2 with their Ultimate turf trainer. One of the first things you’ll notice about them is that the toe area is heavily guarded, with it being raised up off the ground to take pressure off that area and to allow better take off speed. Using synthetics and mesh, these shoes are very light and also are breathable and flexible, too.
Mesh is located all over them, and that is a real joy to have when it is very warm. The use of their SuperFoam in the insole makes them comfortable and also adds to the shock absorbing qualities, meaning they have excellent cushion. One thing that users have expressed concern with is that they don’t have much arch support, meaning if you have flat feet or high arches that there isn’t much help. They also don’t have many colors to pick from, either.
- Good price
- Toe area helps you push off
- Absorbs shocks very well
- Just black colors to pick from
- Not much in the way of arch support
Boombah Men’s Catalyst Turf Shoes
Everyone loves an underdog, a concept that is as American as baseball itself. And that’s what Boombah brings to this list. Sporting 14 different color combinations, with some very flashy ones, and coming in at a reasonably middle ranged price, this is a pair of turf shoes that shouldn’t be looked over just because of their brand name. The Catalyst has excellent traction thanks to triangular shaped treads on the bottom, placed strategically throughout the foot. Using a textured toecap, they would make an excellent buy for a pitcher as it helps to reduce the amount of abrasions that the area takes. The heel is reinforced to give extra support for players at all positions, making up a little for them being a low top. These are comfy, but they are self-admittedly not as comfortable as other Boombah offerings. Another thing to watch out for is that they are a bit heavier than most, so that is something you will have to consider before hitting the ballpark with them.
- Awesome colors including one that is classic Americana
- Brilliant traction
- Good for pitchers due to toe being guarded
- Heavier than most trainers
- Not super comfortable
Mizuno Men’s 9 Spike Advanced Erupt 3
If you are looking for something that can double on a normal field in a pinch, then this offering from Mizuno could be just the pair for you. While it does lack in colors and designs, it is a versatile pair of shoes that has good traction on virtually any surfaces that you will encounter thanks to the nine spikes it uses. Because they are rubber, they can pass on artificial turf, though they are raised much more than any of the other options so far in the list have been.
The Proflex technology is probably its biggest calling card, allowing the shoes to be very flexible in multiple areas due to have zones in which you can flex. This means the foot can move much more naturally than many shoes would allow it to move. The synthetic upper and the rubber bottom means they will last a pretty long time and will also be comfortable while doing so. It’s another pair that comes at a very reasonable price, so that will not leave you upset at all. One major issue is that they consistently run small, so you will have to size up to get the most from them. They also aren’t the most sturdy of options compared to others on the list.
- Versatile and good for in and outdoors
- Very comfortable and flexible
- Durable pair of shoes
- Looks are lacking
- Runs small
- Not as sturdy as others
Nike Men’s Force Zoom Trout 4 Trainers
If you want to be more like Mike Trout, because let’s face it, none of us can reach that level, these shoes are awesome for that. They do cost more than others do, but they resemble him in that they are classy and simple, just like the man himself. Yet they have a ton of function to them. They are quite breathable because of mesh, but they don’t go overboard and let in a ton of dirt due to the polyurethane that is used on top of it. This, along with the synthetics used, makes them durable and much less of a pain than others have been in the past that couldn’t get this right. Instead of the typical treads, Nike has gone with a gel look on the bottom, which gives you traction without the added weight. Using Nike’s patented Zoom Air, the shoes absorb impacts extremely well and will live you satisfied as you make big plays constantly or just as you are standing around waiting to do so. Something to be careful with about Nikes is that they tend to run small and narrow. You also tend to have very lightweight, as they have moved toward in just about all facets of their footwear, so that naturally means less protection and support.
- Breathable but doesn’t let in debris
- Gel bottoms make them lighter
- Tremendous cushioning used
- Runs small and narrow
- Not as much support as others
- Cost is a little higher
Conclusion & Final Recommendations About Indoor Turf Baseball Shoes
There is no lack of things to factor into your decision on turf shoes. From how well they fit you, to how much comfort and support you get, to how they look, and also to how well they hold up under relentless use, there is just so much to consider. It can be overwhelming given the sheer amount of shoes are available on the market. With so many brands competing to win your loyalty, it can clog up the mind and get you feeling like you will never come to the right decision. However, after our guide and our reviews today, as well as the FAQ’s that you can consult below, you can feel much, much better about your knowledge on the subject and will be able to make an informed, confident decision as a result.
FAQ’s About Turf Shoes for Baseball
Can I Just Wear Running Shoes?
This is a big no. If you are going to be playing baseball, you need something that was made for baseball. Running shoes are made for the purpose of running, sure, but they only have one direction in mind: forward. If you are just going to be thrown out at first every time, or if you are going to play in the field, and only have to charge forward to make a play, then it would be fine. But seeing as how that rarely is going to happen, it would be a bad idea. Furthermore, they would have little to no grip for you on the turf, limiting your ability to have much of an effect at all on the game. This is a big no-no.
Are There Other Purposes For Them?
Yes, there are. Turf shoes are also known as trainers, and the reason why you might see them marketed and call as such is because a lot of players wear them around when they are not playing the game. If you are hitting BP before a game, or if you are walking around the clubhouse, you might want a pair of them, even if you aren’t going to be playing on turf. Many find them to be very comfortable, and thus they have decided to have pairs with them despite this fact. Of course, they always come in handy for turf, but it’s nice to have something that won’t destroy the field before you even get a chance to play on it. Turf shoes can help with that endeavor. Turf shoes are awesome as they are very versatile and won’t tear up nearly as fast as other types because they can go on all types of surfaces without seeing all that much wear and tear.
How Do You Clean Trainers?
Cleaning turf shoes is very similar to cleaning normal baseball cleats. In fact, in most cases, it will be easier because you shouldn’t be collecting all that much dirt or mud. If you do find yourself needing to clean them, and you should every so often, then you can use water and a brush in most instances. Using a brush will get all of the stuff you can’t get out by banging them together to come free. The water will simply soften up the grime you have at hand and make it easier to clear. Never tumble dry your shoes, and try not to soak them too much, either, as it could have averse affects and leave you disappointed with how they end up looking.
What Are The Major Differences Between Synthetics and Leathers?
Leathers are the traditional material that has been used in baseball shoes and just shoes in general. It has a premium feel and is quite comfortable and responsive as a result. One knock on leather is that it is not as durable as synthetics are. They are also more expensive most of the time as well. Synthetics are a man made version of leathers that are meant to closely resemble them while being much cheaper and also more durable.
This type of material used to be tough to wear because they were super rigid, but in the last couple of decades this has become the go to type of material for athletes because it is just so versatile and long lasting. The cheap factor also cannot be overlooked. Both are good options to have. Be aware that some synthetics are better than others. Some shoes are just hard to break in, while others are impossible to do so.
Another ‘upper’ material that can be used along with those is mesh. Mesh is great to air out the foot and allow moisture to find its way out of the shoe. This means hotter days can be handled a lot better as a result without dying due to the heat. They help wick sweat from building up inside your socks, which only serves to make you heavier and also can create heat spots and other irritations, too.
How Do You Break in Turf Shoes?
One great thing, and there are many, about turf shoes is that you can wear them on just about any surface. This means that, unlike with your normal baseball cleats, you can wear them inside. So you can wear them in the house in order to help break them in. The best tip to know about breaking in shoes of any kind is to simply take it easy. Do a little bit at a time. Thankfully, with turf shoes, you usually do not have to spend much time breaking them in. This is a case by case basis, though, so you should be prepared to be patient for some pairs. If you have a pair that is ultra rigid and offers little to no flexibility, you might not ever been able to break them in. Wearing them around isn’t going to make a shoe that is ill-fitted better, either, so keep that in mind as well.
Are Baseball Trainers The Same As Training Shoes?
Don’t get the two mixed up, as it is easy to do! Training shoes, or those used for working out, are much different from baseball ‘trainers.’ The shoes on this list are meant for baseball purposes, and while they can be used for walking and general wear, they should not be worn while working out as it is not their intended purpose at all! It’s easy to see trainer and think that, but you have to be careful and look closely before buying.