Analyze Your Baseball Dirt Mix
Your Baseball Dirt Mix
a safe, high performance infield. Give your athletes the opportunity to
perform at their highest levels.
Reduce bad hops and compaction.
you're going to do
Analyze the dirt mix. Determine the sand,
silt, and clay composition of your infield.
Why you do
How you do this
your dirt composition lets you know what your dirt problem is and what
you need to do to go about fixing it.
Tips & Hints
- Take 3 or 4 small
soil samples from your dirt mix around the infield Put
the samples in a glass jar filling it a little over half full of the
- The add water
so it is a couple inches above the dirt.
- Shake the jar to
mix the dirt and water. Let it stand for a few hours.
- The material settles
out like this: sand on the bottom, silt (topsoil) in the middle, and
clay at the top. If your mix has crushed brick or decomposed granite,
this will settle at the bottom with the sand.
- Try for a mix that
is something like this: 30% clay, 45% silt, and 25% sand. The jar analysis
lets you know what you should add if you intend to add more dirt to
your field. Almost every field I've tested needs more clay.
- Don't try to be
too fine with this test. Some fields have such a uniform composition
that the result looks like it is just one kind of dirt. It might be.
If that is the case then you need to walk the dirt areas or look at
them after a game. You'll be able to tell if the dirt area is too soft
or too hard. Players will also tell you how the field dirt plays for
- You can also analyze
your field by asking the players some questions or your own observation:
Mistakes to avoid
- Is the field dirt
area firm enough or do you slip in it?
- Are the bounces
about right or do they seem to die or bounce too high?
- Are there some
'bad bounce' areas that need attention?
- Is there a lip
at the infield grass line that causes trouble when fielding grounders?
Skipping this step
and just ordering another truck load of crushed brick is a bad idea. You
might just be making an existing problem worse.
but crushed brick
the right mixture
of clay, soil, and sand
crushed red brick
baseball dirt alone
is not good for footing