Tennessee Baseball – Nation’s Fastest Field Cleanup

Posted on April 24, 2014 | in Baseball, Kaizen, Lean Tools, Sports, Standardized Work, Teamwork, Time Savings | by
tennessee baseball cleanup

The University of Tennessee baseball team claims to have the fastest pregame field cleanup. (GoVolsExtra.com)

The University of Tennessee baseball team claims to have the nation’s fastest pregame field cleanup. Before home games the players sprint out to handle cleanup tasks at the end of batting practice. Here is video of this little activity:

The team’s goal is to clean up the field faster and faster each time. It appears that the activities in the video include folding/rolling the orange tarps on the field and corralling the protective pitching/field shagging nets.

What’s cool is that the players have designated assignments on the field tarps and nets. When players with early/simple activities are done they head back to help out with larger endeavors like picking up the large rolled-up tarps that take more effort than the folding steps. The team is using standardized work to make sure players not only know their assigned tasks, are aware of the other tasks occurring around them, the timing of the series of tasks, and presumably that all task responsibilities are present and accounted for.

The tarps aren’t light and at least they don’t have very far to be carried. The net racks are also presumably heavy, but they have wheels and it’s simple for pitchers to roll the cages across the field with little effort.

It would be interesting to see how the team measures its progress and how it uses Kaizen thinking to identify and attempt new ways to complete the tasks faster. What’s also cool is that the team is clearly energized about trying to do things better and making it fun.

Here’s another quick changeover video for an event center that held three distinct events within 24 hours.

Side note: Lean Blitz Consulting is hosting an Introduction to Lean and Six Sigma workshop/luncheon on April 29th at the Greater Columbia (SC) Chamber of Commerce. It is open to the public – registration is here!

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