Little League Q & A With New York Life Rep, Youth Baseball Coach Mike Daly
Little League International: Was your time as a youth baseball player a positive experience, and did that experience directly impact your decision to volunteer in your league as an adult? What life lessons you learned by playing youth baseball?
Mike Daly: I lived on baseball diamonds every spare moment. I cut a diamond in our lawn by lowering the level of the lawn mower to mark the baselines.
My father died when I was 12, and I began head-coaching a 6-year-old team with my little brother on it the same year. Baseball was the most decent thing in my life—where I found peace and felt grounded. Investing in others and putting the team ahead of myself was a requirement in my heart.
Little League International: What did you learn about sportsmanship and fair play from your days as a youth baseball player and what would your message be to parents of prospective players curious about the reasons for playing youth baseball?
Mike Daly: We don't question calls. We don't raise an eyebrow at a bad call. We do not respond to argumentative fans or players from other teams. We treat umpires and other teams as our guests.
Little League International: How would you describe the balance between teaching competitiveness and trusting teammates?
Mike Daly: I think the balance is more between competitiveness and personal conduct. Loyalty to teammates is a core value. If a teammate makes an error that costs us the game, I am looking for the guys that comfort the player making the error.