Tim and I went to D.C. on Wednesday and, although we did not actually see a game, that was our game for the week. No game this weekend. So I needed a weekend project.
As can be seen in my entry from Wednesday, I have a black Rawlings Randy Johnson signature RBG10B glove. (You can see me holding it in this picture). I love Rawlings gloves. They are one of the very few things in my life to which I am brand loyal. But it hasn’t always been that way. For a couple years in middle school and high school, I had a Spalding Dwight Gooden signature glove. That was right at the beginning of Ken Griffey, Jr.’s career. And with Griff’s help, I fell in love with the Rawlings Trap-Eze.
During my sophomore or junior year of high school — after a beautiful black Rawlings became my primary glove — I performed surgery on that Spalding. I made it into a Trap-Eze.
This weekend, I decided to perform a similar glove surgery. I decided to turn my Randy Johnson into a throw-back Mariners Trap-Eze. Yes, I did hesitate in doing this because it is a Randy Johnson signature glove and he’s a future hall of famer. But I figured who cares. I want to maximize my enjoyment of the glove, and to do that, it needed to become a throw-back Mariners Trap-Eze.
Here we are at the beginning of the process:
The top picture shows the glove intact. Its a fine looking glove. But its no Trap-Eze. When I made my old Spalding into a Trap-Eze in high school, I just cut certain portions of the webbing out and laced the remaining portions together in a Trap-Ezesque fashion. But I wanted to do this one in a more authentic manner.
I made a glove by hand a couple years ago and (as shown in the top picture) I still have a big roll of black leather. I used the black leather to fashion a sixth finger for the webbing. I eye-balled it and tried to get it the right size and shape. I then punched holes in it for lacing.
As shown in the top picture, I used royal blue lacings like some of the Mariners did back in the day (or some (like Griff) had royal blue gloves).
In the bottom picture, you can see that I removed the original webbing. I kept it incase I was to change the glove back to its normal state some day. But I don’t foresee that. I like it too much.
I use this for all of my glove lacing needs:
That is actually a vein clamp. My mom was a nurse and over the years, she got me several vein clamps — yes, used in surgery to clamp veins — to use for stringing gloves. As a result, I was sorta the go-to guy for my baseball team when anyone needed a glove re-strung. The vein clamp works great because it locks in place once clamped down.
The stringing of all gloves can be tricky if you’re not used to it. The Trap-Eze is probably more confusing than any other glove because it has a lot more going on. Lots of lacing all over the place. But, the project turned out great. I think the sixth finger turned out just right — or as close as I should expect to be able get it by hand and eye-ball.
Here are some before and after shots. First, inside:
And the outside:
Finally, here is a shot showing some comparisons with a real Trap-Eze:
No too shabby, eh? Much better than my original Trap-Eze surgery, in my humble opinion.
By the way, while at the Rawlings outlet to get the blue lacings, I picked up a face mask for Tim’s batting helmet. He’s recently managed to foul a ball or two off of his face (how does that work?), so I figured a mask would help him avoid injuries.
Here is a look at this helmet/mask in action from this afternoon:
That is it for this weekend. The Mariners are in Baltimore Tuesday through Thursday. Tim and I will be there either Wednesday or Thursday. Getting excited to see our M’s!
By the way, the M’s won today on Griff’s RBI double in the 8th — scoring Ichiro who had 3 hits on the day. Excellent.