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How to Conquer Your Greatest Time Killer
April 16 , 2007  --  Issue 8
Better Fields for Better Play
Jim Reiner

  • Why you'll never get it all done...
  • Why you're overlooking essentials...
  • What you must do NOW to get ahead

I get so anxious sometimes to work on a ballfield that I don't take time to plan.  After all, I've worked on so many baseball fields and softball fields that I should know what I'm doing by now.

What I'm talking about here is your pre-season effort or the work you do before hosting tournaments. 

Unfortunately, I've learned the hard way that it’s better to do 15 minutes of planning before you start these major projects.   That way you'll incorporate the right materials, the right equipment, and the right labor to get the job done.

A little time up front will save you a lot of headaches later that just eat up your time.  What eats up your time?  Things like extra trips to the store for parts, running out of chalk, a flat tire on your tractor, dull mower blade, bend base peg, broken field equipment, missing field drag, faulty sprinklers, etc.

Here's how to get on top of this.

Use a ballpark audit checklist.
  Go through the checklist and think about the condition of your ballpark.  Some of the audit can be done right at your desk.  Other items require that you get out and walk the area. 

When you are done, you'll know exactly what your ballfield condition is and exactly what you need to do to fix problem areas or prevent something from becoming a problem.

Here's what your audit checklist should cover:

  • Playing Surface – Infield Dirt Area
  • Playing Surface – Grass
  • Playing Surface – General Areas
  • Bases & Anchoring
  • Fencing
  • Spectator Areas
  • General Safety of the Ball Park
  • Dugouts
  • Lighting
  • Other hazards

I've found that a checklist is the way to go.  It also shows me where the priority areas area: safety.  I'm sure you could make up your own checklist, or just go out and walk your entire field and take notes.

If you want a starter checklist that I've used, try this: 
Save Time with Preseason or Pre-Tournament BallPark Checklists


Have fun!

Yours for better play more often,

J. Reiner

Jim Reiner
Publisher, Editor, & Groundskeeper
The Ultimate Baseball Field Renovation Guide

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