The University of Maryland Eastern Shore Department of Intercollegiate Athletics has named Danny Acosta as the baseball program’s new head coach.
“It means the world to me to join the program and I thank the UMES community for welcoming me,” Acosta said. “This is a major opportunity to lead UMES baseball to new heights. I look forward to guiding our student-athletes to success.”
Acosta comes to UMES with 30 years of experience in coaching, scouting, and skill development. He spent the previous three years as head coach at Iowa Lakes Community College in Estherville, Iowa.
UMES Vice President of Athletics and Recreation Tara A. Owens spoke highly on Acosta’s rich background on and off the diamond.
“During our national search, we received an influx of interest from qualified candidates. After a thorough analysis of each candidate, we believe Danny Acosta is the right person to serve as our head baseball coach,” Owens said. “Coach Acosta has an unmatched passion for the game of baseball and a tremendous vision to build a successful program while fulfilling the overall mission of UMES.”
“Under his guidance, we believe our student-athletes will flourish on the field, in the classroom, and in the community.”
In the early 1990s, Acosta had coaching stints in Florida and Puerto Rico before spending time with Major League Baseball teams as a scout and pitching coach. From 1995 to 1998, Acosta served as a scout with the Texas Rangers followed by one season as a scout for the Seattle Mariners. He went on to serve as a pitching coach for Santurce Cangrejeros, a professional team based in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He began coaching in the college ranks as an assistant at Iowa Lakes from 2006 to 2010. He returned to MLB as an associate scout for the San Francisco Giants for two seasons before serving as a hitting coach for the Daytona Cubs, then a minor-league affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. Acosta accepted the position of associate head baseball coach at Piedmont International University in 2017 and served three seasons at PIU before returning to Iowa Lakes as their head coach.
“It’s been a long journey. It’s been a grind,” Acosta said. “After an injury early in my career, I began coaching at the age of 21. I’m 53 right now, so it’s been a long and rewarding career.”
In his third year as head coach, 2023 was a success for Acosta’s Iowa Lakes Lakers both on and off the field as two student-athletes were named to the All-Region team. Additionally, eight student-athletes were named to the All-Region Academic team for their efforts in the classroom – a trend Acosta plans to continue with the Hawks.
“The first reason everyone is in school is to study, to get an education and get a degree to embark on their own career,” Acosta says. “We want to be more than just baseball players.”
Acosta takes over a Hawks baseball program moving into their second season as an associate member of the Northeast Conference. Last season, UMES earned a bid into the conference tournament following an 18-35 regular season.
Courtesy: University of Maryland Eastern Shore Media Relations