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Old Wed Mar 14, 2007, 03:08pm
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Walking the field

The posts about the ground rule - or lack of ground rule - double prompted me to somehow remember a little thing I had flash through my mind Tuesday morning while in the throes of 41.5 hours without sleep (long story).

Anyway...
How many of you walk the field before a game or tournament?

I'm not the caped crusader of walking fields, but I will walk a field (with my partner if present) if it is the first time I am at a field. If nothing else, I walk the infield and make sure the bases are in the right place and they are secure (a nice little kick is often a good security check).

I know practically all of you lead busy lives and if you can get to a site 30 minutes before a game takes something slightly short of a miracle...but it seems the practice of walking the field...or even checking the bases...is falling into disuse.

OK...back to my cave. Hoping sunshine for all
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Old Wed Mar 14, 2007, 04:05pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkbjones
The posts about the ground rule - or lack of ground rule - double prompted me to somehow remember a little thing I had flash through my mind Tuesday morning while in the throes of 41.5 hours without sleep (long story).
Are you gonna tell the story?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bkbjones
Anyway...
How many of you walk the field before a game or tournament?

I'm not the caped crusader of walking fields, but I will walk a field (with my partner if present) if it is the first time I am at a field. If nothing else, I walk the infield and make sure the bases are in the right place and they are secure (a nice little kick is often a good security check).
Well, indeed every "new ground" needs to be seen before the game. I also walk with my partners before we go to the lockerroom at (semi)finals.
And now in the cold spring (we've got about 10C in the Neth.'s) during practice-games, I walk the field while warming-up... (and don't care if my partner is walking with me; it's my warming-up and if (s)he doesn't need it so be it...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by bkbjones
...I know practically all of you lead busy lives and if you can get to a site 30 minutes before a game takes something slightly short of a miracle...
At the weekend games I'm normally about an hour before the game starts present. Only traffic can make me late...
When / if I'm working an evening game (mon - fri) I'm also trying to be present at least 45 min. before the game starts. If I know that it will be difficult, I'll try to leave my work earlier... (and still be there on time!) Once I've got the wrong time in my head, it was a big misstake and I was very ashamed (as I should be!!!)!!!
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Old Wed Mar 14, 2007, 04:28pm
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I have the luxury of working the same fields most of the time, and I do check them MOST of the time - the infield every time, the outfield about once a week. When on a new field, I always check it (this goes for football as well ... a much longer task). Only in tournies do I do a less cursory inspection, usually because time does not permit, and we can (hopefully) trust that tourney directors have done their due diligence before any games start. But even in tourneys, the bases and plate get a kick and both gates get checked (if there are any to worry about). I try to check the netting behind home often - something probably overlooked in many field checks. I saw a kid get hit through a hole in a net - luckily it was in the leg as he was in the stands, but that could have been a disaster. I've checked ever since.
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Old Wed Mar 14, 2007, 08:33pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkbjones
The posts about the ground rule - or lack of ground rule - double prompted me to somehow remember a little thing I had flash through my mind Tuesday morning while in the throes of 41.5 hours without sleep (long story).

Anyway...
How many of you walk the field before a game or tournament?

I'm not the caped crusader of walking fields, but I will walk a field (with my partner if present) if it is the first time I am at a field. If nothing else, I walk the infield and make sure the bases are in the right place and they are secure (a nice little kick is often a good security check).

I know practically all of you lead busy lives and if you can get to a site 30 minutes before a game takes something slightly short of a miracle...but it seems the practice of walking the field...or even checking the bases...is falling into disuse.

OK...back to my cave. Hoping sunshine for all

Hey Bkbjones,

I always go to the field early. More than once I had to go to the ground crew to get them to change a T-Ball field to a coach pitch field, or vice versa. Lines in the wrong place, etc. There's really no excuse for that as they have the schedule of who is playing on what field. A time or two we had some wet spots on the infield and by the dug-outs that needed some attention.

After umpiring a coach-pitch game I stopped by to watch the last few minutes of a T-ball game and noticed second base was in the wrong place. I guess none of the coaches or the umpire even noticed it. Even the 1st and 3rd base coaches didn't notice there wasn't a direct line from 1st to 2nd or 2nd to 3rd.

Nothin' like fun at the ole' ball park! .Al
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Old Wed Mar 14, 2007, 09:31pm
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For high school or college ball, I walk the field before every game - or the first game of a double header.
For summer ball, I walk the field before my first game of the day.
For tournaments, I walk the field before my first game of the day.

There's too much grief that can be prevented from coming back to bite me for me not to walk the field. I'll sometimes find bottles or broken glass. I've had to get the grounds crew to fix a wrong length base setup. It also lets me check to see what shape a fence is in - if it's there.

And then at the pre-game, I do the ground rules, not the home coach.

Part of the reason is to prevent problems. Another large part of the reason is appearance - I want the coaches & players to know things will be done right.
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Old Wed Mar 14, 2007, 09:52pm
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I walk the field before the first game at every level I do - LL through college. Actually in HS in WV, it is required. There's too much of a liability factor. Even if I had been at the field yesterday - I'll walk it today. Imagine someone cutting grass outside the field and tossing a board over the fence - meaning to get it before he leaves and forgets . . . and now imagine a HS kid stepping on that board. I like my house and want to keep it!

If there's something that needs to be done - something moved - I make the home team do it. Not sure where it happened, but last year two umpires took a piece of plywood that was leaning against the fence (inside) and tossed it over the fense. During the game the wind picked up and actually blew the board into a spectator and they got sued. It's all about liability for me.
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Old Thu Mar 15, 2007, 11:26am
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My routine, for college and high school ball is this. After my partner(s) and I are dressed, we will walk to the field about 20 minutes before game time. We will check the equipment in the home dugout first, then leave there via a walk around the outfield, checking for potential trouble spots, then arrive at the visitors dugout where we will check their equipment. It is also a chance to cover any mechanics issues with a partner when I have never worked with them before.
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