Walk-ups for baseball and softball fields are often a good option to manage traffic while also allowing for grass in foul territory (softball). This is sometimes necessary to manage surface drainage/grades.
Let’s look at two walk-ups. First, the softball field at Ohio Northern University. As you can see these walk-ups are the same width from the warning track to the plate, so the on-deck circle is off the walk-up.
The next example is at the MLB/P&G Cincinnati Reds Urban Youth Academy. In this example, the walk-ups are flared out as you get closer to the track. This allows for the on-deck circles to be on the walk-ups.
Also, you can see this early season photo also illustrates how walk-ups can aid in surface drainage.
Which is the best option? That’s a field manager’s decision. I personally like the flared walk-up which allows for space for the on-deck circle.
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