Calhoun, GA - Shaw Sports Turf has become the go to turf provider for professional baseball. Five Major League Baseball teams have trusted the brand to supply a top-of-the-line playing surface. The Arizona Diamondbacks, Texas Rangers, Miami Marlins, and Tampa Bay Rays all have opted for Shaw Sports Turf game fields while the Toronto Blue Jays decided to install a field at their practice facility. The company is outfitting the Fredericksburg Nationals as well at the MiLB level.
Philipe Aldahir, Ph.D., Shaw Sports Turf’s former Director of Research and Innovation, developed a system of benchmarking playability characteristics of elite playing surfaces. The research allows for those characteristics to be replicated in a Shaw Sports Turf system. The goal is to not only be the best artificial turf surface, but the best playing surface – period.
Shaw Sports Turf is the only company with years of research dedicated to collecting data specific to baseball resulting in the B1K, Batting a Thousand, turf system. Working with university research partners, Shaw Sports Turf was able to study the playability of the surface as well as the athlete’s interaction with it. This knowledge allowed the development of a surface with the player in mind, designed to not interfere with the game and enhance player performance.
The Geofill® Performance Infill within the blades forms a firm surface similar to natural soil with lower energy rebound levels that mimic high-performance natural grass. The result is a more natural playing posture and motion from the players, creating less fatigue as their bodies will not have to overcompensate for the “bounciness” of the surface. The B1K surface also creates natural baseball bounce, allowing players to charge the ball confidently while fielding.
This infill is also right for those with a commitment to sustainability, as the Geofill infill is made from natural materials that are environmentally friendly. The transition to a synthetic playing surface provides significant savings in water consumption each season by requiring less water to maintain the system.
“From our first visit with the staff at Shaw Sports Turf, we were clear that a synthetic grass surface for Globe Life Field would only be a consideration if it could deliver the best surface in Major League Baseball and address the concerns we had related to impact on the players,” said Rob Matwick, Rangers Executive Vice President of Business Operations. “Months of detailed research that included extensive input from our Baseball Operations group from both a health and performance aspect have resulted in this decision."
“Shaw’s commitment to research and development have been second-to-none,” said Matwick. “However, its engagement with the study at Auburn demonstrated to our staff that Shaw was just as concerned about player safety as we were.”
“Baseball has done research all year long, along with Shaw, they’ve been out at Auburn University to test all this. This isn’t like what you’ve seen in the past. It’s not like an astroturf,” Derrick Hall, CEO and President of the Arizona Diamondbacks said. “This synthetic grass is going to be consistent; it’s going to look great. It’s about fan experience where — I have heard for the last couple of years how hot and miserable fans have been in this building and that’s because we’ve had to keep direct sunlight on this grass that’s not growing right anyways.”
“In going through the process of evaluating the playing surface at Marlins Park in 2019, we set out to find a solution to combat the challenges we have experienced with growing natural grass in Marlins Park,” said Miami Marlins CEO Derek Jeter. “We appreciate the extensive research and new technology from our partners at Shaw Sports Turf to help us deliver a consistent playing field designed to enhance the safety for players and the playability for baseball.”
ABOUT SHAW SPORTS TURF
A wholly-owned subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., Shaw Industries is a full flooring provider to the residential and commercial markets. Shaw supplies carpet, hardwood, laminate, resilient, and tile/ stone flooring products, as well as synthetic turf. Shaw Sports Turf is one of the leading synthetic turf companies in North America and has represented quality and innovation for more than two decades with over 3,000 successful installations, including an impressive list of high-profile field installations. For more information please visit www.shawsportsturf.com, call 866-703-4004 or find us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.
BATTING A THOUSAND and B1K are trademarks of Shaw Contract Flooring Services, Inc.
Geofill is a registered trademark of Italgreen SPA.