How to Install Fair (Foul) Lines

Once the home plate has been properly installed (see "How to Layout a Baseball Field" section), foul lines can be marked. Work slowly and precisely, crisp foul lines not only add to the quality of play, but they add aesthetic appeal to the field, as well.

Recommended Equipment

  • 400-feet of String
  • Large Nail or Spike
  • Reel-type Hand Mower
  • Marker and Chalk

Step 1: First Base

  1. Run a string from well behind home plate, going along the right back edge, to beyond first base, going along the outside edge. Anchor each end of the string, pulling tight.
  2. The foul line can be laid with chalk or paint. Lay the chalk on the inside edge of the string.
    HINT: Chalk and paint will build up over time. Remove old material as needed.
  3. Run the line from first base to the foul pole and repeat Step #2. PAINT IS A BETTER OPTION THAN POWDERED MATERIALS FOR MARKING THE FOUL LINES.

Step 2: Third Base

Same steps, now move the string to the left back edge of home plate and third base.

HINT: The 1st and 3rd base paths should be 5 to 6 feet wide equally divided by the foul line. These edges should be well cut. This width allows for easier maintenance using roller and drag mat.

A ball striking the foul pole flag is considered a fair ball, so be sure to have the flags pointing toward the field of play.

Any buildings around the ball field will reflect on how parents and fans view the entire field. Paint storage sheds and keep them neat. If the press box looks shoddy, then the perception of the entire field will be lowered. Groundskeepers work too hard preparing the fields to have permanent structures in disrepair spoil the fans experience at the ballpark.