The Wilson A2000 glove welcomes a mix of performance upgrades amidst its new look, sweeping across the entire line for the launch of the 2021 version.
Typically, Wilson makes upgrades to about half the glove line each year, but the 2021 A2000 receives a full upgrade, both in performance and aesthetics. “This year was a unique opportunity to do everything (at once),” says Ryan Smith, Wilson baseball gloves product manager, about the brand’s largest and most popular line of gloves. “It makes this a unique launch.”
The new 2021 Wilson A2000 glove features a new ComfortPro Lining that conforms to a wearer’s hand over time, a fresh bold Wilson logo new for 2021 and the availability of the new SpinControl technology.
The updated lining features soft leather laminated to create a “softer, nicer feel” on the inside of the glove. “Your hand kind of molds to it after time,” Smith says. “I have been using it on my own personal gloves because I like the softer lining.” The palm liner and comfort sleeve eliminate any negative rubbing on the back of the pinkie and ring finger by concealing the binding to help with the comfort.
“This is the best feeling an A2000 model has ever had,” says Aaron Gillette, Wilson associate marketing manager.
The SpinControl technology has made previous appearances in special-edition models, such as the Wilson Western Series launched in the summer for what would have been the College World Series, and a handful of Major Leaguers and national team fastpitch players were already using the SpinControl after testing it, but the 2021 A2000 lineup signifies the first real chance for SpinControl to enter the mainstream of Wilson gloves.
The trademarked technology includes a special oil treatment and dimpled pattern to increase the friction when the ball hits the leather. It all equals a reduction in spin as soon as the ball hits the glove. Gillette says position players handling crazy spins have seen a significant difference in the technology and Wilson has already seen adoption from its professionals, from Jose Abreu to Marwin Gonzalez.
“We kept it quiet and didn’t share it with anyone,” Smith says about the professionals switching to it. “Next year it will be more widespread.” For the public, the SpinControl doesn’t come on every 2021 A2000 model, but is available across a variety models so that players who want to try it out can get everything from traditional leather to SpinControl with SuperSkin when choosing a new A2000 design.
“We didn’t want to jam it down everyone’s throat,” Smith says about the roll out.
To go with the new technical features, Wilson adopted a new “bold logo” aesthetic. “I felt with all the new stuff we needed a new look,” Smith says. The old logo will still be available in Wilson’s online custom glove builder.
The changes come to Wilson fastpitch too, with the entire line gaining the ComfortPro Lining. Designed specifically for female athletes, Wilson works with Team USA athletes to craft the fastpitch designs and now has the largest roster of FP Game Models ever with Aubree Munro joining Kelsey Stewart, Monica Abbot and Sierra Romera with models. With eight of the top 15 players on the Team USA roster, Wilson continues to use the insights of the country’s top fastpitch players to create new designs for the gloves.
The players are also adopting the SpinControl technology. “They were all testers of it, which speaks to that they liked it so much they wanted to carry it over,” Smith says.
On the baseball side, Wilson added an A2K Game Model for Ozzie Albies and Jose Abreu and an A2000 Game Model for Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Wilson continues to offer A2K Game Models for Juan Soto, Matt Chapman and Mookie Betts and A2000 Game Models for Clayton Kershaw and Jon Lester.
Tim Newcomb covers gear and business for Baseball America. Follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb.