Bases in Baseball

Online Exhibit


The Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum’s collection includes bases from Major League Baseball and International competition. Most bases in the collection were donated to the Museum by the Montreal Expos and the Toronto Blue Jays.

Early bases were usually made of canvas, filled with sand or sawdust and painted white. Modern bases, while still often referred to as a “bag”, are actually made of hard rubber and synthetic materials. These bases have metal spikes anchoring them tightly to the ground and are made to be sturdy.

All bases are set up in fair territory on the diamond. Players need to touch the base to be declared safe in a play, and they need to make contact with the base while rounding the bases, even in a home run. The hard bases can be dangerous and cause injuries for players if they aren’t careful!

Originally bases would have been used for an entire baseball game, or even several games, but modern bases often are used for only three innings in a game. This means teams go through many more bases now than they used to, making more available for fans to keep as souvenirs while still leaving many for players and museums.