Looking back now, DL Hall wishes he could alter his major league debut in a number of ways. Performance, for starters. The mindset he had before that outing against the Tampa Bay Rays last month, for another.

And also the glove he wore, a tan model he used when he entered professional baseball.

“I was like, for my debut, I’m going to go back to the old faithful,” Hall said. “But now I wish I didn’t. There are a lot of things I wish I had stayed on my own.

The Orioles southpaw now realizes that when he took the mound with that low-key glove, he lost a part of himself. When he guessed his ability on his first start, the 23-year-old prospect only shook his own confidence, leading to five runs against him in 3 2/3 innings before he was sent off to Triple-A Norfolk to learn how to become a reliever for Baltimore’s playoff push.

When he returned to the Orioles last week, it was determined not to get lost. And part of that meant wearing the shiny teal glove that is more meaningful to him than just a fashion choice. With every glance at his teal and orange glove — or its black teal and orange version — Hall is reminded of his upbringing in Valdosta, Georgia.

He dreamed of gloves like these. Now he has them.

“I don’t come from a big city, I don’t come from a wealthy family or anything like that,” Hall said. “For me, the flashy stuff is a way of reminding myself that I am who I think I am. I try to create that mindset for myself. That’s why I wear my big gold chain. All of this reminds me of where I come from and how far I have come.

The practice started in high school, after meeting the owner of WebGem Custom Gloves at a baseball tournament. With this introduction, Hall’s world opened up to custom designs, and he created a black and gold one to wear while playing with the Valdosta Wildcats, his high school team. When Hall made All-American teams in high school, he released a red and blue version.

With each, there was a feeling he would get: he belonged. And though his first foray into pro baseball after the Orioles selected him in the first round of the 2017 draft mostly featured that tan glove, he discovered Rawlings’ teal color in 2020. He never went back to it. .

“I like it hard. I like how loud it looks,” Hall said. You can’t go out with a bright color like that and not throw hard.

In the locker next to Hall in the Camden Yards clubhouse on Sunday, right-hander Beau Sulser looked at the two shiny gloves in Hall’s hands.

“That’s why I wear an all-black glove,” Sulser joked. “90, 92 [mph] with sink. I need an ordinary glove.

Since entering professional baseball, Hall has accumulated as many as 20 custom gloves. The two main ones he uses with the Orioles are the teal and orange edition and the black-teal and orange version, the former being matched with white or orange uniforms while the latter is reserved for black jerseys.

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The start of Hall’s major league career was eventful. Adapting to a relief role, Hall struck out two of the three batters he faced on Saturday before allowing three runs in his next appearance on Monday. It’s an adjustment, but he doesn’t want to turn away from who he is, or what brought him here.

So he looks at his teal glove again.

“Just to remind myself, like, ‘Look, you did it. You have come this far. You can go even further,” Hall said. “I could never have any of this. Now that I can, I want to be able to remember that I did this.

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