As one of the giants in the footwear industry, it is impressive what the Nike brand was able to achieve over the years. The brand specializes in different types of footwear, including soccer cleats, basketball shoes, baseball cleats, and a few others. The brand is also well-known for its athlete collaborations, particularly for their baseball line. Perhaps the most notable of which is Mike Trout's very own collection of cleats.
Nike baseball cleat technologies
Here are some of the notable technologies found in some of the most prominent baseball cleats from this brand:
Nike Zoom Air. Placed in the forefoot and heel areas, this innovation makes use of pressurized air units to promote a lightweight cushioning as well as a responsive feel for the wearer.
Nike Flyweave. This woven material ensures as locked-in feel while providing lightweight support.
Nike Fastflex. This outsole technology maximizes articulation as well as natural motion.
Lunarlon Foam. Inspired by astronauts bouncing on the moon, Lunarlon foam delivers the same cushioning found in standard foams that are 30% heavier. This results in a more lightweight cleat without sacrificing responsiveness and comfort.
Pebax. Another outsole technology from the Swoosh, Pebax Is designed to deliver maximum responsiveness on the field while maintaining stability.
History of baseball shoes
The history of cleats has been a long one. Tracing its roots to King Henry VIII in the 1500s, this shoe type has received several facelifts over the years. Innovation is not a stranger to cleats as several brands have tried their hand in making improvements to cleat design. Starting out with a simple enough basic leather and metal stud construction, modern innovations proved to be useful in terms of improving comfort as well as performance.
For baseball cleats, in particular, received its most notable update was the DIY removable cleats made popular by Paul Butler. Moving on to the 1880s, the first official baseball cleats were marketed by Waldo Claflin. These spikes featured built-in steel. Additionally, in the 1960s, artificial turf was launched into the baseball world. This meant having to use shorter studs as well as the rediscovery of removable studs. Finally, in the 1970s, the Major League association decided to ban spikes, similar to those used in golf, to prevent injury. Since these updates, brands have been fiercely competing with each other to come up with innovative ideas for cleat construction. This has lead to more comfort while amping up performance in the diamond.
Things to consider when purchasing baseball cleats
There are several types of top for baseball cleats– the low, mid, and high. Each type brings a different set of advantages and disadvantages when used. Low-top baseball shoes affords the player more mobility because they keep free the ankle area from obstructions. However, low-tops do not offer much support. A baseball cleat with a low top includes the Nike Hyperdiamond 2.5 Keystone.
The mid-top collars extend just below the ankle area. This cut type provides a much more supportive feel compared to low-top baseball shoes.
High top cleat collars extend way above the ankle. This type of collar is designed to maximize support and stability. However, it does tend to restrict mobility while putting additional weight to the cleat.
There are a number of stud types, depending on the ground that they are to be used on. We havemetal, molded, and turf. Starting with metal cleats, it is the cleat of choice for professional baseballers. This is unsurprising as it can penetrate compact grass while delivering the best traction among the three cleat types. Although, notably, metal cleats do belong in a more expensive price tier. Next, are molded cleats. These cleats are commonly used by Junior league players and are considered to be much more forgiving than metal cleats. These are also best used for muddy fields. Finally, there are turf cleats which are much more geared toward comfort rather than performance.
Parts of baseball cleat
Here are the parts of a baseball cleat and their functions:
- Upper. The upper material is usually composed of lightweight and breathable materials like genuine leather and synthetic leathers. These materials are also well-known for their softness and comfort.
- Toe Cap. This feature is meant to maximize durability as it reinforces the high-abrasion areas of the cleat.
- Studs. There are three types of cleats. They are namely: metal, molded, and turf.
- Insole/ Midsole. The insole and the midsole act as the cushioning system for the cleat. The materials used are those that promote shock absorption, comfort, as well as support.
- Soleplate. The soleplate holds the studs and is usually created from highly durable elements.
- Heel Counter. The heel counter adds support by reinforcing the heel cup.
Baseball cleats and player position
Infielders. Metal and molded baseball shoes work best for infielders. Metal baseball cleats are well known for their ability to penetrate dense ground while molded cleats perform well in sandy or muddy grounds.
Outfielders. For outfielders, metal cleats work best as it provides maximum traction, especially for a grassy field.
Pitchers. Metal studs are well suited for Pitchers as they allow for traction and stability.
Players and Nike baseball shoes
Being the third baseman of the Colorado Rockies for Major League Baseball, it’s not long before the Nike brand noticed Nolan Arenado. The All-American baseballer boasts an arsenal of accolades including a five-time MLB All-Star streak, as well as a Rawling Platinum Gloves awarded to the player two times in a row. Some of the Nike baseball cleat models that have been sported by the player include:
- Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2
- Nike Alpha Huarache Elite Mid
- Nike Vapor Ultrafly
- Nike Kobe 10 Elite Low Pregame
- Nike Huarache 2K Filth
- Nike Air Huarache 2K Fresh
- Nike Air Huarache Pro Mid
Also known as ‘Captain America,’ the former American third baseman of the New York Mets is one of baseball royalty. David Wright holds several awards which include a seven-time All-Star nomination, a Silver Slugger award, and a membership for the much awe-inspiring 30-30 Club. With all his accolades, it’s unsurprising how the Swoosh scooped him right up. Some of the models sported by the player include:
- Nike Air Huarache Pro
- Nike Air Clipper ‘17
The Houston Astros infielder is one of Nike’s patrons, particularly with their Alpha Huarache line. The professional baseballer has several awards under his belt including the 2013 Brooks Wallace Award. He also was the first high schooler to win the USA Baseball Player of the Year award. Here are some Nike baseball cleat models sported by the player:
- Nike Alpha Huarache 2k Filth
- Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2
The Swoosh did not overlook the outfielder of the Houston Astros as the top athlete rose the ranks. The Houston Astros outfielder received several awards in his career in the MLB. This includes being an All-Star member, the Silver Slugger award, as well as an MVP Award in2017. The Nike baseball cleat models sported by the player include:
- Nike Lunar Vapor Ultrafly
- Nike Lunar Vapor Pro
- Nike Lunar Vapor Ultrafly Elite 2
With his own line of baseball shoes, the Los Angeles Angels center fielder is no stranger to the Nike brand. With quite a display of skill and grace in the diamond, the Melville Meteor earned himself a hoard of awards including an eight-time MLB All-Star title, 2014 and 2016 MVP trophies as well as a six-time Silver Slugger Award. Here are some of the Nike baseball cleat models for the American baseballer:
- Nike Force Zoom Trout 6
- Nike Lunar Vapor Trout
- Nike Lunar Trout 2
- Nike Zoom Trout 3
- Nike Force Zoom Trout 4
- Nike Force Zoom Trout 5
Other athletes wearing Nike include:
- Gleyber Torres - Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2 Low
- Yasiel Puig - Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2
- Jose Altuve - Nike Air Huarache Pro
- Andrew Benintendi - Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2 Mid
- Carlos Gonzales - Nike Vapor Ultrafly Elite
- Brandon Crawford - Nike Vapor Ultrafly Elite, Nike Air Huarache 2K Filth MCS
- Anthony Rizzo - Nike Air Coop ‘17 SMU
- Kyle Schwarber - Nike Vapor Ultrafly
- Jose Altuve - Nike Air Huarache Pro
- Javy Baez - Nike KD Trey 5 III Custom
Frequently asked questions
How does one get the best possible fit for baseball cleats?
Several things need to be considered to get the best fit out of one’s baseball cleats. Typically, the upper that envelops the foot is made of soft and breathable material to promote a comfortable ride on the diamond. It is also customary to leave a finger width space between the toe box and the big toe to maintain comfort. In addition to this, a central lacing system is commonly integrated into the shoe’s design to allow for customization.
What does PE mean? What are some of the notable PE models from the Nike brand?
PE means ‘Player Exclusive.’ As with the name, it is a special baseball cleat custom-made for professional athletes. One of the pioneers of the idea was the Air Jordan line, personalizing team colors as well as specific features unique to the player.
A good example would be Adam Jones’ Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2 cleats. This model sports the new Diamondbacks colors, which includes a combination of colors from the old logo and the new - teal and red. The cleat features a half-and-half look. The midfoot extending up to the collar is painted black. The forefoot, on the other hand, is drenched in teal or red. The Swoosh logo is also featured in both the lateral and medial sides of the boot. Each is outlined in either in red or teal to help it stand out.
Another is Trevor Story’s Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2 Mid baseball cleats which were drenched in the Colorado Rockies colorway. The high-top baseball shoe combines a color blocking effect with a glass-like pattern for this model. Both the vamp and the collar areas are drenched in purple. Additionally, the Swoosh is also highly visible in a bold inky color. The Nike logo is situated in both the medial and lateral sides of the boot. Another unmissable feature is the athlete’s last name, STORY, printed across the collar of his right boot.
Finally, it would be inappropriate not to mention Brandon Crawford. As the only player to have shoes with Instagram and Twitter accounts, the player is right to show off what he’s got in his locker. Perhaps one of the most notable cleats that the player has in his arsenal is the 2019 Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2. The pair carries an animal pattern in several areas. Additionally, the midfoot and the collar areas are drenched in black. The Swoosh logo is covered in gold, creating a luxurious feel for the pair.
What is Mike Trout’s first signature cleat?
Making use of the brand’s Nike Vapor collection, the very first signature Trout cleat (the Nike Lunar Vapor Trout) was launched by Nike in 2014. The model featured a black and white colorway with metal studs. Several technologies were also incorporated into the shoe’s construction including Lunarlon, Zoom Air as well as Pebax.
10 best Nike baseball cleats
- Nike Alpha Huarache Turf
- Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2 Low
- Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2 Mid
- Nike Force Zoom Trout 5 Pro
- Nike Force Trout 5 Pro MCS
- Nike Force Zoom Trout 5 Turf
- Nike Hyperdiamond 2 Pro MCS
- Nike Vapor Ultrafly 2 Keystone
- Nike Alpha Huarache Elite 2 Low MCS
- Nike Force Zoom Trout 5
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