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Local high school baseball fields offer a variety of looks

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hylton field 1.jpg

Hylton High School's baseball field

Unlike football fields or basketball courts where dimensions are the same no matter the location, baseball fields offer different sizes and oftentimes unique vantage points and scenery. Here is a look of local high school fields. All information supplied by coaches.

BATTLEFIELD HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Haymarket; School opened: 2004

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 315-360-310

Infield is made of: Grass with dirt positions and grass baselines

Dugouts are made of: Cinder blocks

Name of field: Bobcat Stadium

Unique feature or features to the field: View of Bull Run Mountains beyond the outfield

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Patriot because it will be a high intense game of emotion and competition.

What do you like most about your field? The atmosphere is electric and has a great view (best lights in the county). Love the fact that our bullpens and cages are hidden from view to other teams.

Most challenging aspect of your field? Sun at first base around 7 p.m. in the spring. Very difficult coming from third.

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? Went to Bermuda three years ago. Game Day came out to edge and add dirt to level it off. We upgraded our game mound last year.

BRENTSVILLE HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Nokesville, School opened: 1929

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 310-375-310

Infield is made of: Grass with dirt cutouts around bases

Dugouts are made of: Concrete block

Name of field: Sean Cutsforth Field. Cutsforth is a 2006 Brentsville graduate and former baseball player who died in combat in Afghanistan in February, 2011.

Unique feature or features to your field: No unique features

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Patriot because it is a nice field and always in good condition.

What do you like most about your field? The three-year-old grass infield. The turf management class does a great job maintaining it.

Most challenging aspect of your field? Batters face the sun in the evening... almost as bad as Central Woodstock

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? Grass infield summer of 2016. Constant wind would blow dirt into the infield grass and make awful ridges. Not a problem anymore. We have added the press box, leveled the infield and switched to all grass infield (2017) and added a new scoreboard (2016). We have plans to add a walking path from the parking lot to the road that runs beside the field and to the softball field. The dimensions have stayed the same since the field was built.

COLGAN HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Manassas; School opened: 2016

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 317-367-317

Infield is made of: Bermuda grass with dirt in the infield, not all grass

Dugouts are made of: Concrete and brick dugouts

Name of field: Colgan baseball field

Unique feature or features to the field: Colgan has a turf bullpen and mounds, a large foul territory and over 50 feet from home plate to the backstop.

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Hylton. It’s the nicest field hands down. Fans are right on top of you so it’s a great atmosphere.

What do you like most about your field? We have the nicest complex by far. Turf cages, great press box and great amenities for the fans and kids.

Most challenging aspect of your field? Foul territory. Players need to understand the dimensions of that.

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? We redid the whole infield, turfed the bullpen mounds and drill area.

FOREST PARK HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Woodbridge; School opened: 2000

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 315-368-320

Infield is made of: Bermuda grass with dirt cutouts

Dugouts are made of: Concrete

Name of field: None

Unique feature or features to your field: No unique features

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Not really a favorite. Patriot’s field is well kept.

What do you like most about your field? I like the fact that when we have a baseball game the other spring sports are right there on the football field. Everything is in close proximity to each other. I like our Bermuda grass and the cutouts. The field plays well.

Most challenging aspect of your field? With the Bermuda grass, it constantly needs to be watered and kept in pristine shape.

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? No recent upgrades

FREEDOM HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Woodbridge; School opened: 2004

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 330-390-330

Infield is made of: Grass

Dugouts are made of: Concrete

Name of field: None

Unique feature or features to your field: Very, very, large field (By comparison, Freedom’s center field is only 10 feet shorter than center field at Pfitzner Stadium, home of the Class A Potomac Nationals minor-league baseball team. Left and right field are 315 deep at Pfitzner).

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Colgan. It is in good shape and has good views.

What do you like most about your field? At the moment, not much

Most challenging aspect of your field? It hasn't been maintained at all. Since the last coach left, no one had touched it. Weeds took over the batters’ box, and there are no bullpens. The grass in the field is still dead.

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? Soon I will be fixing up our dugouts. I will also be adding at least one bullpen. In the future I would like to bring the large fences in, and make the field more high school friendly.

GAR-FIELD HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Woodbridge; School opened: 1953

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 315-360-310

Infield is made of: Bermuda grass with the dirt cut out around the bases

Dugouts are made of: Cinder block

Name of field: John A. Suren Field. Suren was a former Gar-Field baseball coach

Unique feature or features to the field: Smoketown Road runs parallel with the right side of the outfield fence from the pole to center field and has been reached by batters during the games.

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Patriot with its layout and manicured field certainly has the feeling of a minor league stadium. The expanded dugouts, foul territories and the wooded area behind the outfield fence makes it stand out.

What do you like most about your field? The field’s close proximity to Gar-Field makes it unique and the fact that it sits up on a hill makes for a special experience under the lights.

Most challenging aspect of your field? Most definitely the wind. In the past, Gar-Field had a reputation for being a launching pad. However, 90 percent of the time the wind blows across the field from left to right field, which knocks down hard hit balls heading out to left and center fields. The short porch and that wind has made or broken many a left-handed hitter. Pop ups can be a nightmare for infielders.

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? Railed concrete walkways throughout the stadium in 2017. Double bullpens in both the left and right field foul territories in 2017. Oversized cubbies in both dugouts and a built-in Major-League Baseball style bat rack in 2017.

HYLTON HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Woodbridge; School opened: 1991

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 325-380-327

Infield is made of: Bermuda grass infield with dirt baselines and dirt infield

Dugouts are made of: Concrete blocks and wooden benches

Name of field: It is not named after anyone or has a specific name. There is a sign that says "Welcome to the Dawg Pound" which was in place when Jason Ritenour arrived as head coach in the fall of 2014.

Unique feature or features to your field: The design of the fence behind first base and third base is unique. A live ball could travel behind the entrance way of the dugouts. It forces the fielder to move away from the dugout before attempting a throw to home plate.

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Potomac because of the mystique and tradition. It is difficult to beat Potomac at Potomac. No lead is safe over there. Patriot has a nice field that is maintained well.

What do you like most about your field? I think our infield grass, infield dirt, mound, and baselines are as good as anyone's. Rarely do we experience any bad hops. Infield plays very true.

Most challenging aspect of your field? Drainage issues in certain areas of the field. Right field tends to hold more water than left field. Also, the right side of the infield grass holds more than the left side. There are times where the dirt is bone dry, yet the grass is still wet.

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? In the fall of 2014, the infield was stripped and replaced with Bermuda. In the summer of 2015, the outfield was sprigged with Patriot Bermuda. In the fall/winter of 2015, Hylton re-constructed the game mound, as well as installing new bullpen mounds and a turf catcher's area.

OSBOURN HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Manassas; School opened: 1977

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 317-368-317

Infield is made of: Grass except for baseball cutouts/mound and home plate

Dugouts are made of: Concrete

Name of field: Gillum Fields. This field is dedicated to the students of the City of Manassas in honor of Dr. Marvin L. Gillum, an advocate, benefactor, and supporter of the city of Manassas.

Unique feature or features to your field: Nothing unique

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Over the past few years I have enjoyed the atmosphere that comes with Hylton baseball and their ballpark.

What do you like most about your field? The field is going into its second year of use. It’s easy to maintain.

Most challenging aspect of your field? The sun

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? Field is going into its second year of use. Fairly new still.

OSBOURN PARK HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Manassas; School opened: 1975

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 330-370-310

Infield is made of: Grass infield, dirt cutouts around bases

Dugouts are made of: Brick and concrete

Name of field: None

Unique feature or features to your field: With tracks behind left and center field, trains come through during games all the time.

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Colgan. They’ve done a nice job with the playing surface. Both bullpens are fully turfed and the dugouts are nice and big.

What do you like most about your field? The low maintenance aspect of it. As long as we tarp the mound and home plate, our field is playable much more often than traditional dirt infield based fields. We save a lot of money on Turface.

Most challenging aspect of your field? Rain. If it is too wet we have to wait. It is not the kind of field that you can make playable with hard work and sweat. If the grass is too wet, then it is not playable.

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? We created the Hall of Fame Garden in 2013. We turfed the training area in 2014. We installed the grass infield in 2015. We replaced the scoreboard in 2015. We installed the Alumni Walkway (tile walkway) that connects the entrance to the Hall of Fame Garden.

PATRIOT HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Nokesville; School opened: 2011

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 315-370-315

Infield is made of: Bermuda grass infield with dirt

Dugouts are made of: Concrete

Name of field: None

Unique feature or features to your field: No unique features. A traditional baseball field

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Battlefield. It usually draws a big crowd with a lot of energy and enthusiasm about the game due to Battlefield being a cross-town rival

What do you like most about your field? The playing surface is immaculate and better than some college baseball fields.

Most challenging aspect of your field? Our field tends to be very windy, which makes it sometimes tough for hitters when the wind is blowing in. The wind is also is a challenge for any ball that goes up in the air because the wind can move the ball around.

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? Installed new home bullpen mounds after 2018 season, away bullpens will be upgraded prior to 2019 season

POTOMAC HIGH SCHOOL

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 305-360-305

Infield is made of: Bermuda grass infield with dirt

Dugouts are made of: Cinder block

Name of field: Jerry Gardziel Field. Gardziel was Potomac’s second head coach and led the Panthers to Group AAA state titles in 1983 and 1988.

Unique feature or features to your field: The light pole in the bleachers along the third-base line. Potomac was the first Prince William County high school baseball team to get lights for its field. At the time the lights were installed, Potomac used portable bleachers so the permanent bleachers had to be built around the light pole.

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Don’t have one, but Battlefield’s looks out at the mountains.

What do you like most about your field? It’s a great place to hit. It sits down in a bowl. Our infield is fast.

Most challenging aspect of your field? Our field is not as big as the other fields in the county. Some years that’s good and some years that’s not so good if you are a one-to-two home run type of team.

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? No recent upgrades

STONEWALL JACKSON HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Manassas; School opened: 1964

Depth to outfield walls (left-right): 310-355-310

Infield is made of: Infield grass is Patriot Bermuda with a full infield dirt skin

Dugouts are made of: Concrete and wood

Name of field: None

Unique feature or features to your field: We have so much backstop behind the catcher that there is actually a light pole in foul territory on the first base side. We are nestled into the walls of the quarry on the opposite side of the hills but open up onto the back of the school. Last unique feature is Mount Cesario. There is an artificial hill that runs the length of the third-base side that was built in 2008. The hill is named for Greg Cesario, the father of two former Stonewall Jackson players. Cesario donated all the dirt, trees, and plants on the hill.

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Either Patriot or Osbourn Park. Patriot is meticulously cared for and is a fun environment. I am a little biased as I called Osbourn Park home for the last four years but the short porch in right and all the improvements [the coaches] have made the past four years make it a really fun place to play.

What do you like most about your field? It’s home.

Most challenging aspect of your field? Trying to get it all done. Stonewall is a bit behind some of the other fields in the district when you consider three of the five fields (in the Cedar Run District) were built in the last 15 years. (Stonewall head coach John Miller) and his brother Andrew, who worked grounds crew for the Mets and Pirates, have so many plans and goals, but it is sometimes hard to decide what to do first.

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? Repainting the dugout, put some turf in the home bullpen, installing a visitor bullpen and reclaying all mounds.

WOODBRIDGE HIGH SCHOOL

Location: Woodbridge; School opened: 1964

Depth to outfield walls (left to right): 320-380-320

Infield is made of: Bermuda grass infield with dirt

Dugouts are made of: Concrete and wood

Name of field: Gene Mulholland Field. Mulholland is a former president of Woodbridge Little League and manager of American Legion Post 364

Unique feature or features to your field: Woods beyond the outfield that provide a pretty background setting

Favorite Prince William County high school baseball field to play at besides your own and why? Potomac’s field.

What do you like most about your field? When Woodbridge is home, they have incredible crowds.

Most challenging aspect of your field? The drainage and keeping the outfield playable

Any recent upgrades to the field or stadium and what were they and when put in? Getting a new backstop in center field, new tarps for the mound and the plate, a new batting circle and a team room connected to our dugout.

David Fawcett is the sports editor for InsideNoVa.com. Reach him at dfawcett@insidenova.com

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