David Dravecky is an American former professional baseball player, a motivational speaker, and an author. He played Major League Baseball for the San Diego Padres (1982–87) and San Francisco Giants (1987–89).
In 1988, Dave was at the top of his game peak of his career. His opening day victory over the Dodgers was overshadowed later that fall by the discovery of cancer and the removal of half of the deltoid muscle in his pitching arm. After battling cancer in his pitching arm, he came back a year later to defy the odds and pitch once again in the Major Leagues. Despite being told by doctors, “Short of a miracle, you’ll never pitch again,” he pitched a 4-3 win for the San Francisco Giants that day.
His comeback was short-lived. Five days later, he threw “…the pitch that could be heard round the world.” His humerus bone had split in two – ending his season.
Cancer ended his career as his team was reaching the 1989 World Series. He won the Hutch Award in 1989.
Dravecky wrote two books about his battles with cancer and his comeback attempt: Comeback, published in 1990 and written with Tim Stafford, and When You Can’t Come Back, coauthored with wife Jan and Ken Gire and published in 1992. He has also written a Christian motivational book, “Called Up”, published in 2004 by Zondervan. With the help of Stafford, Dravecky saw Comeback republished as a self-titled autobiography for children in 1992.