ST. CLOUD -- This week in our “Behind the Scenes” series on WJON, we hang with the grounds crew at Joe Faber Field to see how the field is prepared before baseball teams take the mound.

Baseball is America's favorite past time, but before you can take your seat at Joe Faber Field, a lot of maintenance is done first.

Baseball Stadium Assistant Tim Kuhl says they begin by watering down the field.


"We first add water to the infield skin before we drag the field to keep the dust down," says Kuhl.

Once the infield is damped the crews begin to drag the dirt to give it a smooth surface.

"The big thing is to drag the perimeter first because you don't want the dirt on the grass." says Kuhl. "So you make an outline of the grass infield and drag a pattern in the dirt."

While that is going on, the bases are washed and the base lines are drawn.

"They chalk the first and third baselines, and then broom the baselines to get rid of all the tire marks and footprints," says Kuhl.

After the infield is groomed, another coat of water is placed and the bases set in place.

"When we water it we try to put enough on so it last the whole game and not make the field muddy," says Kuhl.

The entire routine takes about two hours, as the crew has to wait for teams to take warmups and then chalk the batters box.

However, mother nature can delay that process.

"You can always get the field ready, but if there is rain it could push you back an hour or two or a day even," says Kuhl.

During the game the crew monitors the concession stands, locker rooms and bath rooms before taking the field and doing everything all over after the game.

"Plus we need to clean the stands, dugouts and then locking up all the doors and shutting the lights off," says Kuhl. "It's almost longer then getting the field ready."

Kuhl says presentation is everything when it comes to the field.


Grounds crew at Joe Faber Field waters the infield before the game. (Photo: Alex Svejkovsky, WJON News)
Grounds crew at Joe Faber Field waters the infield before the game. (Photo: Alex Svejkovsky, WJON News)