After a game or a practice, baseball players often end up looking like they’ve been to hell and back.
With all the sliding, rolling in the dirt, and running, baseball gear takes some serious punishment.
And the jerseys are usually the first to get messy and get dirt, mud, sweat, and sometimes even blood all over them.
Still, every player is expected to show up next time looking crispy clean.
It’s not just the matter of looking good, but also taking pride in the jersey you wear and the team it represents.
Unfortunately, most of us don’t play for MLB teams and don’t have equipment managers at our disposal to take care of our gear.
The good news, however, is that learning how to wash a baseball jersey is fairly simple and you can easily do it on your own.
A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Wash a Baseball Jersey
Most baseball jerseys on the market are made of polyester knit or mesh.
This makes them durable and comfortable, allowing for freedom of movement.
Also, it makes them easy to both wash and dry.
Still, as they usually have heat-pressed decals, such as names, numbers, or team logos, some extra care is needed so they don’t end up damaged after washing.
By following this guide on how to wash a baseball jersey, you should be able to easily clean your gear while keeping it in mint condition.
Prepare Your Baseball Jersey For Washing
Before you put the jersey in the washing machine, you’ll need to take a couple of preparation steps.
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Washing jerseys in a machine often can handle tougher and more stubborn stains.
Therefore, you have to pretreat them before using the machine.
Treat the stains with a special stain-removing detergent or simply use the homemade agent.
You can make your own by mixing 1 part vinegar with 2 parts water.
Then, dip the jersey into the mixture and gently rub the stain with a sponge or soft toothbrush.
Leave the stained parts of the jersey to soak in this mixture for an hour or two before using the washing machine.
Try to do this as soon as possible, as the stains will become harder to remove.
If there are bloodstains on your jersey, soak it in cold water and rub until the stains come out. If necessary, use dish soap or shampoo.
Separate Jerseys From The Other Laundry
It’s important to separate your jerseys, as the other laundry may bleed color and ruin them.
Particularly pay attention not to wash baseball clothes with blue jeans as it will surely leave blue streaks on the jersey.
Also, if you own multiple jerseys, try to separate them by color before putting them in a machine.
Turn The Jerseys Inside Out And Unbutton Them
To prevent direct contact with the detergent and avoid fading, turn the jerseys inside out before washing.
In addition, this should provide extra protection for various patches and heat-pressed decals.
It also prevents stitching from coming apart.
Unbuttoning the jersey will keep the buttons from breaking and reduce the possibility of wrinkling.
Washing Your Baseball Jersey
Once you’ve properly prepared the jersey, it’s ready to be put in the washing machine.
Here are a couple of things you should know about washing the baseball jerseys.
Use Cold Or Slightly Warm Water
The safest option is using cold water, but the detergent will perform more efficiently if used in warm water.
In any case, avoid using hot water, over 100 degrees, as it may cause the jersey to shrink, lose color, and damage the decals.
Check To See If Your Detergent Is Suitable For Baseball Jerseys
It’s best that you use powder detergent as liquid ones often don’t dissolve well and can contain chemicals that can ruin your jersey.
Check to see that the detergent you’re about to use doesn’t contain bleach and has color-protecting properties.
Also, don’t use fabric softeners. If you’re having trouble getting rid of the nasty odors, you may add a bit of vinegar through the bleach dispenser.
Set The Washer To A Gentle Cycle
To prevent the fibers from getting ruined and roughing up the jersey, use the gentle setting on your washing machine.
It’s the setting commonly used to wash delicates.
Also, make sure to use short cycles. Keeping the jersey in the machine for a longer cycle can damage them.
A 12 to 20-minute cycle should be enough.
Sometimes, the stains are still on the jersey after you take it out of the machine.
In this case, repeat the stain removing steps described above and put it back in the washer for another short cycle.
Drying Your Baseball Jersey
After you’ve washed your jersey clean, the last thing you want is to ruin it in the process of drying.
To avoid this, you should never use a dryer to dry your jerseys.
Using it even at a low setting can cause the jersey to shrink, melt the printing, and cause unnecessary friction and piling.
Plus, if any of the stains have remained, the dryer will likely make them permanent.
After you take the jersey out of the machine, shake it well and turn it right side out.
This will keep the decals from sticking to one another.
Then, hang them to air dry under the sun. If you feel that the sun is too hot, you may cover the jersey with a thin fabric.
Although all this may seem overwhelming at first, washing a baseball jersey is pretty simple once you get the hang of it.
Learning how to routinely do it will save you a lot of time and help you look decent on the baseball field.
Plus, your gear will serve you longer and preserve the mint condition.
Ideally, you should wash your jersey after every game or practice.
The longer you wait, the harder it will be to wash it. Always plan ahead so can always have a clean jersey ready for the game.
Also, if you plan to store jerseys after the season, make sure to wash them before.