Baseball is a game of rules and regulations, although a backyard game can be just as fun. Still if you are like us and have decided to host a small summer game then you may have run into a key question – What are the right dimensions for my wiffle ball, softball, or baseball field?
Like many sports baseball has guidelines for field sizes but there are times where making the field fit in the space you have is also important. This can be seen at the highest levels, with major league parks sometimes having outfield walls that are existing buildings, or incorporating hills and other obstacles. The reason that we focus on wiffle ball is because these small fields are more likely to be temporary and fit into odd areas, compared to more manicured full time fields with official backstops and more.
We have done some research to try to capture some of the most popular field dimensions. While you can vary from these, dimensions also help to normalize the game and keep it fun given the average players’ abilities. If you are looking to setup your own Wiffle ball field check out our tips on making a great field, and read on to determine your desired dimensions.
Why Do You Need Standard Ball Field Sizes? Make the fence too short, or use a solid core ball instead of a wiffle ball with holes, on a field and suddenly a fun day of trying to grab pop flys will turn into a home run derby. Alternately, if you make the base paths too short there will be no time for a field to secure a ball and throw to a baseman before the runner is out. Much of this depends on how hard you are hitting, and what you are hitting. We’ve summarized our guide on the different types of wiffle ball and baseball training balls to choose from.
Little League Baseball and Softball Fields vs. Wiffle Ball
If you have access to a real field they can be a great option for a wiffle ball or over-the-line game. In some areas the lowest levels of the sport (T-ball) will be played on entirely grass fields. This is often the case when maintaining a dirt field is just too difficult, and it has the added benefit of slowly down bouncing balls and making it easier to field grounders.
If you want to jump on one of these fields to play that’s fine. But understanding how standard wiffle ball dimensions compare to popular age group field sizes will help normalize the game and keep things fun.
Below in the chart are some of the most common sizes of little league and school age fields, all the way up to the pros! There are dozens of other dimensions for official setups, including the size of pitching mounds, the dimensions of a base, as well as batters boxes and coaching squares.
While each of these has their importance, and having ample spacing for dugouts and backstops is useful, if you are just looking to get a quick game in there are only a few major dimensions that truly impact play. Those are the distance of the base paths, which dictate how quickly runners must move to be safe; distance to the pitching mound which will determine how often and how fast strikes cross the plate, and the distance to an outfield wall which determines if and when you will wind up hitting dingers.
The “Official” Dimensions for Wiffle Ball and Other Baseball Variants
As always, when reviewing this chart remember that if it works for you then it is fine. There is no reason to require a specific setup, some of the most entertaining ball fields have unique features that change slightly how the game is played but still keep the spirit of fun.
|Base Paths (ft)||Pitching Mound to Home Plate (ft)||Outfield Fence (ft)||Notes|
|Wiffle Ball (AWA)||35||42||60-120||Varies depending on bat & ball selection|
|Over The Line||N/A||N/A||55 to Foul Poles||No runners, scored by hitting over the line|
|Tee Ball||50||N/A||N/A||No pitching mound, but a defensive player often plays ~35 ft from plate|
|Little League Minors||60||46||200||Common setup for 6-11 year old|
|Intermediate 50/70 Little League||70||50||200-275||Hybrid dimensions for players moving to upper leagues|
|Baseball (High School to Pros)||90||60.5||300-424||Fence positions vary|
|Soft Ball Little League Minors||55||35||Common Setup for <8 years old|
|Soft Ball Little League Majors||60||40||Common Setup for 8-12|
|Soft Ball High School||60||43||190-220||Fence positions vary|
AWA – American Wiffleball Association Field Dimensions & Wiffle Ball Brand
The “official” wiffle ball is a brand name for the maker of the popular white ball with oval shaped holes. Over time the name has become synonymous with plastic balls and bats, even if each of them has a different design. Still the American Wiffle Ball Association is a loosely affiliated group of what appear to be friends that has standardized some of the rules and dimensions in order to enable teams to compete in tournaments in different areas with similar setups and bring some legitimacy to their league.
AWA dimensions are different from that of the Wiffle ball brand, which uses an “over-the-line” style of setup with no base runners. This hit for distance is the same as is played in the popular tournament every year in San Diego.
We mentioned above that some of the best fields incorparte their surroundings and take on a story of their own. In the same way that the famous movie, Field of Dreams, stated “if you build it he will come”; Wiffle Ball fields are a great way to bring folks together.
In our experience the temporary nature of a simple setup can make it a huge draw for people who walk by and the more personalized the field is the more it becomes a part of the lore of the community. Others around the web have gathered information on some of the best Wiffle Ball fields, including replicas of famous stadiums, that you can use for inspiration. You may also want to consider adding a regulation size corn hole court to stay busy. One of these can fit nicely behind a dugout.