02/17/2019 5:57 PM -
KANSAS CITY, Kan.– The Kansas City T-Bones announced today that outfielder Todd Cunningham, one of the integral parts of the 2018 champion T-Bones, will retire from professional baseball to join the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim minor league coaching staff. Cunningham is set to join the coaching staff at Class A Inland Empire in the California League.
Todd Cunningham brought major league experience to Kansas City when he joined the T-Bones on June 2, 2018, but he also brought instant results. Cunningham would be named the American Association Player of the Month of June in his first four weeks with Kansas City. Cunningham went 46-for-101 with a league-leading average of .455 in his first month. He finished the final three-game road series of June against Lincoln going 9-for 13, and he closed out a pair of bookend series around the Lincoln trip going 9 for 18 against Cleburne over two weekends. Cunningham had two triples, 11 doubles and 19 RBIs on the season after one month in the league. Cunningham led the American Association with a .550 on-base percentage and added 23 walks in his first 26 games.
His impressive start helped him lead the team in on-base percentage (.437) for the season, and he led the team in walks with 57 and finished with 71 team-leading runs scored in 2018. His 26 doubles led the club, and his .333 average also was tops on the American Association Champion’s roster. In 83 games Cunningham hit four home runs and drove in 47 runs. He was also a threat on the bases, stealing 17 bases in 19 attempts to place him third on the club, and his 83 games played was second—during a busy roster shuffle for KC throughout the 2018 season. His five triples led the team, and he would add a team-leading six sacrifice flies. In 78 games played in the outfield, Cunningham played error free for Kansas City.
In the post season, there may have been no bigger pair of home runs than the two he hit in game three of the American Association Championship Series. With the T-Bones trailing 3-0 in the third inning at home, Cunningham hit a solo shot to get KC on the board. Then, in the home half of the sixth with the game tied, with two outs and bases loaded, Cunningham connected with a 1-0 pitch and sent the ball over the right field wall for the T-Bones first grand slam of 2018. The T-Bones would go on to win the game 7-3 and clinch the series the next night.
In the division round against Sioux City, Cunningham was big in the series decider as well. With the T-Bones clinging to a 1-0 lead in the seventh, he led off the seventh with a single to center to help kick start the deciding offensive attack. He would score later in the inning on a Danny Hayes double in the 4-2 T-Bones win.
Cunningham played 67 big league games over the course of his career with the Atlanta Braves and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The Jacksonville, Alabama native spent time with the Indianapolis Indians and the Charlotte Knights, playing nine games each in 2018 before working his way to Kansas City. In those 18 games, Cunningham had 3 RBI’s and hit .163. Cunningham started his career with the Atlanta Braves organization playing for the Rome Braves. In his rookie year he played in 65 games with 20 RBIs and hit .260.
In 2011 Cunningham hit four homeruns while batting a .257 with 20 RBIs in 87 games for the Lynchburg Hillcats of the Carolina League. In 2012 he hit .309 in 120 games with 51 RBIs and three home runs in AA Southern League.
Cunningham saw his first major league action in 2013, playing in eight games for the Atlanta Braves while batting .250. He was called up to the major leagues for the first time on July 30, 2013 and recorded his first career major league hit and run the same day against the Colorado Rockies. Cunningham would play 39 games for the Atlanta Braves again in 2015 before playing 20 games with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in 2016. In 2017 he split time with AAA Memphis Redbirds and AAA Oklahoma City Dodgers. Cunningham had 31 RBIs, hit a .284 and had four home runs.
Full and half-season 2019 ticket packages, as well as mini plans, are on sale now online or by calling (913) 328-5618 or by visiting the T-Bones Stadium offices. Group ticket sales are also on sale now! Wyandotte County residents will be able to purchase individual game tickets beginning Tuesday, March 19th at 10:00am and the General Public on Thursday, March 21st.! Opening day for the T-Bones is set for Friday May 17th at T-Bones Stadium when the T-Bones host the Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks to open the 2019 season.
For additional information or interview requests, members of the media may contact the T-Bones Media Relations Department at (817) 739-3693. Stay tuned to www.tbonesbaseball.com. and the T-Bones Facebook and Twitter pages for updates throughout the season.