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Old Sun Apr 22, 2007, 05:36pm
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Equipment Review: New Balance 450 Plate Shoes vs. Gerry Davis Plate Shoes

I have been wearing Gerry Davis patent leather plate shoes for the past year. I love the shine and ease of clean up after a sloppy game. I wear a size 9 D. Since the GD shoes only came in E and EEE width I got them. I am a diabetic and a little overprotective of my feet. I put extra insoles in the GD shoes and wear both white and black Dr. Scholl's diabetic socks. After every plate game, especially a DH with one plate and one base game, my dogs bark all night long. I have to limp down the stairs in the morning because my feet were sore. I had to do something since we are in the third or fourth week of the season and my feet were not going to make it through the season. I read all the reviews about the various plate shoes. I asked several people about theirs. I bought my son, age 20-just started umpiring HS level this year, the New Balance 450's because they were the only style immediately available in size 12D when he decided he would umpire this season. Yes, I am a little proud he decided to jump into the profession, but I digress. He said he felt like he could actually take the New Balance 450's on a run. The were that comfortable. He is not diabetic and not the slightest overweight (6'2" 175lbs.) I was skeptical. I called and checked around for pricing and availability. Between the Lines Sports, Rex Mehroff, in Appleton, WI, had them available to ship last Wednesday so I went for it. I had a HS varsity plate with the #5 team in the state this past Thursday that went the full 7 innings. I was scheduled for a varsity DH on Friday night with one plate and one base. One of the games involved the #4 team in the state. My feet hurt so bad Friday morning I did not think I would make it through Friday night. The New Balance 450's came in Friday afternoon. I tried them on while getting dressed for the plate on Friday with the intention of only trying them on and then changing to the GD shoes for the game. I walked around in the 450's for a while and then put on the GD. Weight and support were no comparison. I decided to just go with the 450's for the first game as I could not believe the comfort. Other than a little stiffness on the ankles and a little pressure on a bunion on left big toe, they were GREAT! I felt like I could run all the way around the bases. I had no leg or foot fatigue after the game. I came out from behind the plate much faster on all balls hit out of the infield. I joked with the catcher that I might race him to first on a ground ball with no one on just to see who was faster. One of the best plate games I have had. I had not foot fatigue for the second game which ended at 12:20 am due to a delay when one of the teams' assistant coaches had a seizure in the dugout and EMS went to the wrong field causing a 50 minute delay. Anyway, if you have any foot fatigue or sore foot issues or the weight of the other plate shoes is an issue. Try the NB 450's. you will not regret it. By the way, I tried to order size 9D and Rex told me that they ran a little small in the D width so try a half size larger. He was right. 9 1/2 D did the trick. Just my opinion.
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Old Mon Apr 23, 2007, 08:34am
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Location: Lisle, IL.
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Rex is right. I strongly recommend that one order the next size up in these shoes.
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Old Mon Apr 23, 2007, 08:55am
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Rex is the man!!
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