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How To Clean Baseball Cleats: Step By Step Guide

If you're trying to work out how to clean baseball cleats, you've come to the right place.

We've put together a set of simple step-by-step instructions to help guide you through the cleaning process so you can ensure your best baseball cleats are ready for your next game.

In fact, adidas say it's just as important to clean your cleats afterward as it is to actually play the sport itself because any built-up mud and dirt can seriously reduce the traction needed for you to perform to the best of your ability.

With that in mind, we're here to help you get your cleats looking like new again with our top tips right here.

How To Clean Baseball Cleats

In many ways, cleaning baseball cleats is a lot like cleaning football boots in that you're sometimes faced with an array of different materials depending on the model.

However, since most cleats are made from some sort of synthetic material these days, we'll be focusing primarily on this here.

Stick around though because we'll also give a few top tips on how to clean some of the alternative fabrics you may encounter during the cleaning process.

That being said, let's get into exactly how to clean baseball cleats...

What You'll Need

Step 1: The cleaning process begins as soon as you leave the field. Remove your cleats and hit the soles together to get rid of any excess dirt and mud.

adidas baseball cleats product image of black and gold cleats being hit together to clean the soles.
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Credit: adidas

Step 2: Once home, remove the laces from your cleats and leave them to soak in a bowl of warm water and mild detergent whilst you continue with the rest of your cleats.

Top Tip: Add a touch of baking soda into the water can help clean white laces.

Step 3: If possible, remove the insoles and place them in a pillow case, then run them through the washing machine on a cold and delicate cycle. If they're not removable, check out our list of some of the best shoe deodorizers to eliminate bad smells from built-up sweat.

Step 4: Use a soft-bristled brush to gently dry-scrub your cleats to remove any surface debris.

Step 5: Combine water with some shoe cleaner, then dip your brush into the solution and use it to clean any remaining stains. We'd recommend something like Angelus Easy Cleaner that's designed for all types of material.

Top Tip: You can also use an old toothbrush if you're struggling to clean every inch of your cleats.

adidas baseball cleats product image of black and gold cleats being cleaned with a white cloth.
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Credit: adidas

Step 6: Use a microfibre cloth to wipe away any excess liquid and to begin the drying process.

Step 7: Remove the laces from their soak and the insoles from your washing machine and leave them to air dry with your baseball cleats at room temperature.

Top Tip: Stuff your cleats with old newspaper first to help them maintain their shape.

adidas baseball cleats product image of black and gold cleats being left to air-dry.
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Credit: adidas

Step 8: Once your cleats are bone dry, remove the newspaper, relace them, and insert the insoles and they should be ready to pack in your best gym bag for your next game.

What About Other Materials?

While most cleats are made from some type of synthetic material, you do occasionally find cleats made from alternative fabrics such as leather.

Don't worry though as we've put together a few top tips to help you clean some of these alternative materials.

Weave / Mesh

Some cleats, like these New Balance FuelCell 4040 v6s, are made from woven or mesh fabric to help keep them as light as possible, but it does mean they require a slightly different approach to cleaning.

New Balance FuelCell 4040 v6 product image of a black cleat with grey New Balance branding along the side.
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Credit: New Balance

For instance, if you encounter something like Nike's Flyknit or adidas' Primeknit, then we'd recommend using slightly less water to minimise water retention and speed up the drying process.

We'd also advise against using any harsh chemicals or soap as they may wear away any coating or finish applied to the mesh fabric. For more top tips, check out our guide to cleaning mesh shoes right here.


Although most manufacturers opt for synthetic material rather than leather these days, there are still some instances of the fabric being used in the modern game, evidenced by these Nike Lunar Cortez cleats.

Nike Luna Cortez product image of a pair of white baseball cleats with gold motifs and Los Angeles along the sides.
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Credit: Nike

Fortunately, you can clean leather in pretty much the exact same way as synthetic materials, like plastic, as it's known for being incredibly durable.

You could then take the cleaning process a step further by adding leather shoe polish or oil for a little extra shine. For instance, something like this Kiwi Shoe Polish should work well for black cleats.

Things To Avoid When Cleaning Baseball Cleats

While it's important to keep your baseball cleats clean, there are a few things we'd recommend you avoid doing in order to prevent any irreversible damage.

Firstly, avoid placing your cleats in a washing machine or tumble dryer. Although it may seem like a quick solution, the intensity of the spin, water, and heat can sometimes melt the adhesives, cause cracking, and even lead to your cleats falling apart.

Similarly, we'd advise against placing your cleats in any direct heat, including hair dryers. Like leaving your sneakers to dry in the sun, the high heat can warp rubber and deform the shape of your cleats.

Furthermore, avoid using harsh chemicals like bleach. If not diluted properly, they can cause fabrics to dry out and even leave permanent stains in some cases.

Finally, stay clear of using wired brushes or rough sponges because they may end up scratching the surface of your cleats whilst you clean.

Read More: Best Baseball Bats - Our Top Picks

For more articles like this, take a look at our RealKit page.