What Is Baseball Field Skin?
When watching an exciting baseball game, you may not notice a player sliding to first base and seeing dirt come up from the field. Sure, the dirt is not as neat as the turf around it, but it plays an integral part in creating a safe playing area for athletes. The infield skin is where the dirt is filled in at a baseball field. It is the area where players stand around the bases. The most crucial dirt composition is at the pitcher's mound. This dirt must have a consistent mix to allow enough stability to keep players safe from slippage.
What is The Composition Of Dirt At A Baseball Field?
Baseball field dirt differs from your average dirt at a nature park and can come at a hefty price tag. It can cost from $80 to $100 per ton. This adds up to up to $15,000 to $50,000 per field. The skin of a baseball field is made of a mix of clay, silt, and sand. The pitcher's mound is created to house the hardest surface, while the other dirt in the field is created to be soft enough for cleats to leave clean marks, but this mark is still visible even when a cleat is removed.
Why is Drainage Important For the Skin Of The Field?
Drainage is especially important when rain is concurrent in the area where baseball games are happening. If the skin is too muddy or dry, it creates an uneven playing surface. A baseball tarp is an excellent way to keep rain elements away from the field while retaining moisture. Clay and salt are drier materials, while sand is loose and has exceptional drainage abilities.
There is no regulation specifying how the skin of the field should be filled with dirt, so it is up to the groundskeeping team to maintain a good quality field. Too dry dirt could cause players to get these materials in their eyes or bounce balls off a field with too much sand. The joint health of players is another consideration. Dirt that is compacted too much could strain the joints too much and lead to more injuries.
Imagine running on a dry dirt trail or through sand. Which one would you prefer? Maintaining the perfect balance is essential so players are not trudging through complex infield skin mixes.
What is The Perfect Fix For Dirt on the Baseball Field?
Sand should comprise most of the infield skin for most baseball fields, about 50 to 70 percent. The rest should have a mix of silt and clay. There is a silt-to-clay ratio that most groundskeeping teams use, which is between. 5 and 1.0. Climate is also something to consider. A baseball field in Michigan will not have the same weather conditions as a field in Texas. The amount of rain plays a large part in the field's appearance on gameday.
How do You Keep the Baseball Field Skin Safe from Weather Elements?
Investing in a good tarp is one way to keep the infield skin safe from the weather elements. The tarp will help contain moisture and keep your dirt in tip-top condition for the next game. The infield tarp is also easily installed with built-in sections with plastic grip handles. A tarp is a great investment if you are looking for an excellent way to keep your mix of dirt safe.
Looking For a Baseball Field Tarp?
The best baseball field tarp for the skin is created in the USA and has a 2 to 3-year warranty. These tarps from CoverSports are created to keep your dirt mix the same year after year. Find out more about infield skin tarps: