A Premier Design Consultancy For Athletic Field Solutions
With a stable full of former college/pro/national team ballplayers, coaches, and MLB head groundskeepers, we can truly call upon the "foremost" experts on how a field should look and, more importantly, perform.
We design for our kind; meaning those who will touch the new or renovated field always have the most important needs to meet. Sorry, fans in the bleachers.
Bachelor of Science (BS) - Kent State University, 2008
Master of Architecture (MArch) - Kent State University, 2010
Master of Business Administration (MBA) - Kent State University, 2010
Our groundskeepers know how to build fields because they've worked the problems from the other end. With each new project, they call upon personal past experience -- on what fails and why -- and use it to reverse engineer a road map to follow.
These guys are here to tell you that even the game's biggest stage has field construction issues. "If that's the case, how do the lower levels stand a chance of flawless execution?" Well, you can prevent things from going sideways by reaching out to 4Most. This unprecedented collection of advisors has seen (and likely fallen in) every imaginable pitfall. Now that they've learned, they'll gladly guide you around.
Pittsburgh Pirates (2000-2003)
San Diego Padres (2003-2015)
Baltimore Orioles (1985-2000)
San Francisco Giants (2008-Present)
Sports fields are being assembled and renovated by firms whose bailiwick are not in athletics. They'll win a bid for a new high school and flawlessly execute the layout of 50 classrooms, a new science lab, and even a Broadway-caliber black box theater. The varsity baseball and softball fields, however, will get orientated wrong, spec'd with underperforming native materials, and ultimately have no inputs from the true end users. Even the "good ones" I have experienced are woefully generic. Baseball and softball are the coolest sports on the world, from an architectural aspect. Only golf courses beat them in the freedom/flexibility/customization their geometries provide.
The problem is that firms are not regularly drawing them up. A recent survey showed that less than 5% of revenue generated in architecture firms nationwide were from outdoor athletic facilities. Places commissioned to provide these rare projects typically crack the spine on the 1974 Architectural Graphic Standards. Fields look left over; the side car to the brand new high school that wins a local AIA medal.
I know this firsthand, because this exact scenario happened to the very firm I worked with while in grad school. We fell right into the trap: winners of the rights to do a campus with a scope so broad -- lumped together into a single bond issue by the crafty politicians -- that it exposed us as masters of the education sector and over our heads in athletics. My principals refused to listen to an intern, even though I did play the game three rungs on the ladder higher than them.
Timing is certainly everything when predicting successful outcomes in business. Some elements of this you can control: when you decide to enter a project or arranging site visits to align with other planned trips. Others you cannot; for isntance, global circumstances when you leave college. Now, I set out to be a licensed architect at one of the worst possible times for that industry. For architecture firms, the "Great Recession" was an avalanche of lay-offs that few could predict or prevent. People simply stopped building. Thankfully, when the downsizing finally hit my workplace (Braun & Steidl Architects of Akron, Ohio), I had a soft landing on a new career path -- coaching.
Playing baseball at Kent provided me an opportunity to apply for college positions across the country. In July of 2010, I found such a job in St. Louis, Missouri. For six seasons, I was the pitching coach at D-III Washington University in St. Louis. The experience opened my eyes to a sad state of current affairs -- in terms of field quality. It was a really competitive level of baseball (at ultra-wealthy institutions), but the infrastructure wasn't close to meeting the demand. Improvements that school presidents, trustees, and athletic directors lobbied for -- as "must haves" -- were predominantly tangential to the necessities of playing more games, on a more consistent basis.
When I had a chance to do it my way, the niche that was every firm's once-in-a-career was going to be my sole focus. And I was going to go back to my roots; no chasing the few jobs that exist at the top of the baseball pyramid. I'd rather work with the underserved middle tier (small colleges, high-end high schools, and multi-field complexes) than build a full-blown stadium. Those pro gigs have become more about restroom quantities and placement than the essence of the game. That's just not for me.
I vowed to do it all differently if I someday opened up my own shop. That day finally arrived in April of 2018. Founded as SightLine Design in St. Louis, I brought this unique, and highly-disruptive, architectural start-up "back home" to Pittsburgh. The full relaunch, as 4Most Sport Group, took place in late 2019.
I thank you for visiting our site to learn more about the members of our team. Let us serve you to better serve the youth in your communities.