Ex-teammate credits new Mets slugger Michael Cuddyer with saving his life on 9/11

By Kristie Ackert New York Daily News

Michael Cuddyer has gotten plenty of big hits on the field. But for one teammate, those hits were lifesavers.

Former Tigers and Twins reliever Brad Thomas credits Cuddyer’s heroics in the Eastern League playoffs for the Twins’ Double-A affiliate with saving his life. The Australia native told Yahoo! Sports that had Cuddyer’s bat not helped the New Britain Rock Cats advance in the playoffs, he would have been on American Airlines Flight 11 from Boston to Los Angeles that crashed into the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001.

“Michael pretty much saved our lives single-handedly by knocking in the winning runs in the last of the playoff games that took us to the next round,” Thomas told Yahoo! Sports on the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks.

Thomas canceled his ticket when the Rock Cats advanced to the Eastern League finals. Cuddyer, who signed a two-year deal with the Mets on Monday, hit a two-run, walk-off homer in Game 1 and a game-deciding three-run homer in Game 4. The 2001 championship series was scheduled to begin on September 11, but was eventually canceled.

“Every time I see Michael, there’s a handshake and a hug,” Thomas said back in 2011. “And we always wave each day on my way to the bullpen. I am one of his biggest supporters and always follow him no matter where I am in the world.”

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