Field Prep and Maintenance

The objective of this guideline is to give the managers/coaches of the Bellefonte Little League some directions when it comes to the Bellefonte Little League fields.  While it does not cover all situations, it will guide you with some of the more common issues. These guide lines have been in place since 2005. The Bellefonte Little League Maintenance guide has been put together with research of many field maintenance organization including Penn State University, Baseball Tomorrow, Little League International, Sports Field Maintenance Inc., and other league’s guide lines.

Field maintenance is very important to the success of the league and required the managers, coaches, and parents continued support.  The upkeep of the complex is continually ongoing and needs to be completed daily.  Also included in this guideline are rules that Bellefonte Little league would like all of the volunteers to follow.

NOTES for Field 3:
Field 3 uses a different infield mix. This mix is located outside of the lawn mower/infield dirt building.

It is recommended to wet field 3’s infield during dry or normal conditions before games. This infield mix tends to dry out quickly and makes for a hard playing surface.

DO NOT USE field dry on field 3. If the field is too wet and normal maintenance does not create a playable surface it is recommended to cancel/postpone the game or practice.

Download the Field Prep and Maintenance Guide here. Field Prep Guide.pdf

Also see below for field usage during In-climate weather.

Bellefonte Little League
Field Prep for Inclement Weather Guide

1. Determining Field Playability

The decision to play on fields that are too wet is the number one cause of damage to ball fields and the top reason for player injury. And often, techniques used to make a wet field “playable” cause additional damage. Making the tough call to postpone a game due to wet conditions is the best decision for player safety and to preserve season-long playability of the ball fields.

 s aro2. Water Removal Techniques for Infields

The most important mistake to avoid is removing or moving the infield mix.
A level field will drain better and have fewer puddles. Low spots or depressions catch and hold water EVERY TIME!

Standing water must be removed from the infield dirt portions. Dispurst water around the infield dirt using the field squeegee (currently the league has one) or broom.
(avoid brooms when and if possible they move infield material and leave a depression or low spot that will hold water every time it rains.)

NEVER, sweep the water, mud, and dirt onto the grass.


3. After the standing water has been removed, use a rake or nail drag to loosen the infield mix so it will dry more quickly. Allow time to air dry.

Most of you will only have access to the hand rakes.
Most likely the field would be to wet to use the equipment that can handle the spike drag anyway.

Rake with the grass (Rake the infield area with the grass at least one rake length near the grass area)
DO NOT rake against the grass.
Raking against the grass causes lips and low spots to develop on the field.

when dragging the field, keep the drag 1 foot away from the grass. Any closer will push dirt towards the grass.. causing a lip to develop.

4.  Addition of Field Drying Agents

Field dry  should be used judiciously for two reasons:

1. Most importantly Field Dry changes the properties of the infield mix when used abundantly.
(it causes the infield to get hard and dusty in dry weather. )
2. It is an expense product.

Steps for Applying a Drying Agent

1.     ALL RAIN MUST STOP, and the forcast / radar is clear.
The drying agent will not work if it is still raining.
2.    Remove ALL standing water.
3.    Hand rake the field so the air will start helping the field dry naturaly.
4.     Evenly apply a thin layer of the drying agent.
5.     Leave drying agent set for 15 mins.
6.     Rake the area with the drying agent.