Batter’s Box Basics
So you are ready to build your very own field of dreams, and you can already picture yourself jumping and skipping in joy as you shake hands with The Great Bambino himself after hitting a grand slam!
A word of advice my friend, slow down before you call a press conference. First, you have to build a baseball field. True, if you build it, they will come, but let me assure you, building a baseball field is no simple task.
A baseball field consists of many parts: a home plate, the first base, the second base, the third, and the fourth base. There is also the batter’s box, the catcher’s box, the foul poles, the pitcher’s mound, the baseline, the grass line, the outfield, the bullpen and so on. Many baseball dreams have come true on the baseball field and some have been lost forever, and for those who have aspirations of batting grandeur, the batter’s box is considered a holy place, a sanctuary. It is the place where baseball batters call upon their heroes who have long gone, pleading for just a tiny bit of luck before they hit the ball.
Drawn in white chalk, the batter’s box is the area surrounding the home plate where the batter stands, when he is all set to receive pitch from his nemesis, the pitcher. To construct the batter’s boxes, first you must locate the home plate.
The batter’s boxes should be six foot by four foot rectangles and must each be six inches away from the home plate. Building wooden frames to establish the area where the batter’s box should be is advised.
You could also use a string to outline the perimeter of the batter’s boxes just to help you establish the batter’s boxes. Using hard clay, it is best to start from the bottom up when building up the area where the batter’s boxes should be. Inch by inch, add clay one layer at a time, moistening and compacting the soil to ensure the ground’s firmness. The clay material should end up level with the home plate itself which is relatively flat. Continue the process of adding layer upon layers of clay until the proper dimension is reached. Make sure that the batter’s boxes area and the home plate are as flat as can be. Use a board or a level to ensure this.
Once the lines are drawn, you are ready to stand inside the batter’s box and call upon the spirit of The Great Bambino! But before you get carried, remember that a batter’s box is just one part of a baseball field.
Nevertheless, if you follow these few simple instructions, you will be a step closer towards playing on your very own ‘Field of Dreams’. After all, if you build it, they will come… but only if you build it right.