Components of an Infield Mix
The infield mix is the soil used to build the skin surface of a baseball or softball field. Infield mixes are made up of three components: sand, silt, and clay.
Sand is considered the largest soil particle and supplies the structural integrity of the infield. The infield mix is in the acceptable range when it’s 58-75% sand. Also, shoot for retaining over 50% of the sand on the medium sieve.
The second-largest soil particle in the infield mix is silt. Silt serves as a link between the sand and clay. 10-35% of silt in the infield mix is considered in the acceptable range.
The smallest soil particle, clay, supplies color to the infield mix and helps retain moisture. 15-35% is the acceptable range of clay to have in an infield mix. The ratio of silt/clay (SCR) should NEVER be higher than 1:1.
What should we look for in a good mix? Traction, playability, and consistency. A good infield mix will have consistent traction, known as the ability for athletes to play without sliding and slipping. The infield should also play consistently in various weather conditions, which a good mix will provide. A good mix has many characteristics, but those are the most important.
How do you find out what the sand/silt/clay percentages of your infield are? Testing. It is the only way to know, and your Advanced Turf Solutions rep can assist you.