Interview with Buddy Carlyle,
T1D & MLB Pitcher
Buddy was kind enough to take time to answer a few qustions from Matthew Scott about being a professional athlete with T1D. He was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the 2nd round of the 1996 Amateur Draft. He bats left handed and pitches right handed. Currently a relief pitcher with the New York Mets, he has also played with the Atlanta Braves, New York Yankees, Low Angelas Dodgers, San Diego Padres, and Toronto Blue Jays.
M: What is it like to be a professional baseball player?
B: I have been doing this now for 17 years. It is my job, but something I still love to do. I do not however enjoy being away from my family. I have a wife and 2 kids, and the traveling is not as fun as it used to be.
M:. Who was your favorite team and player growing up?
B: I loved Ryne Sandberg and the Chicago Cubs.
M: Do you have a daily training routine?
B: I do; playing baseball every day for almost 7.5 months takes a lot of working out. I train hard in the offseason, and during the season I have a program I try and stick to. Sometimes it is hard with all the traveling, but that is the only way to get better and most importantly, stay healthy.
M: Do you have a daily diabetes routine?
B:: I would not say I have an exact routine. I am just very aware of what I am doing at all times. Inlcuding what I eat in relation to what I am about to do physically, and with those combinations I make the best effort to keep my surgar at the right level.
M:. What was it like to play for Bobby Cox?
B: Playing for Bobby was like playing for your grandfather. I always wanted to do well and make him proud. He is an amazing manager and even more of an amazing person.
M: Have you ever been low pitching in a game?
B: I have not ever been low, but I credit that with always being prepared before I pitch. I am very aware of where I am at all time, and thus never allow this to happen. There have been times I have been lower than I wanted to be while warming up, but I always make sure to have glucose tablets or Gatorade handy.
M: Did players and coaches treat you differently after being diagnosed?
B: The answer to that is no, and I think that is only because I live my life as though I do not have the disease. I monitor myself and keep myself perfectly healthy, but that is the extent. There is not a reason to let diabetes control you. Live every day just like everyone else. It does not hinder one thing I do on a daily basis, so teammates really forget or do not even care I have it, because it is not something that anyone notices.
M: Does diabetes run in your family?
B: My parents and grandparents never had it, but my sister does.
M: Do you ever sneak food?
B: I do not have to sneak food because I eat whatever I want. I just understand that I need to know exactly what am eating and how many carbs are in it. So, I would not really call it a cheat, I just eat.
M: What is your favorite moment in your baseball career?
B: It would probably be my first day in the Major Leagues. It is also close with the first game I pitched back in the Major Leagues after I found out I was a diabetic. I was scared at first if that was ever going to happen, but I made it back and diabetes will never be a reason why I do not play.
M: Any advice?
B: Stay on top of it; never use the diseas as any excuse. You can do whatever you want. Diabetes will not be the reason I die when I am old and gray; always know your number, and don't guess your number. The monitor is your only true number. Guessing causes problesm. When in doubt, CHECK!! Good luck.
CD = Cure Diabetes!
November is National Diabetes Awareness Month. Let's show our support for each other with a "CD" post on the SCYDA Softball FB page! Share your pic! Let's see how many "CD"s we can get!