Devin Smeltzer met Utley in Philadelphia. Now he’s a pitcher with the Dodgers.
The odds of a baseball player being selected in the MLB draft are slim. They’re even slimmer when you’re diagnosed with cancer at age 9. But Devin Smeltzer, a lefthanded pitcher from New Jersey who kept playing baseball as he underwent chemotherapy and radiation treatments, was selected by the Dodgers in the fifth round in 2016.
Ten years earlier, Smeltzer met a young Phillies second baseman named Chase Utley during a visit to Citizens Bank Park and got his autograph. Now Utley plays for the Dodgers, giving Smeltzer a chance to meet the now not-so-young second baseman again.
Hear about the incredible story of #Dodgers minor leaguer @alka_SMELTZer who survived cancer at the age of 9 and his special connection with a current Dodger.— SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) March 30, 2018
This story & more on an all-new #BackstageDodgers tonight after the post-game show. pic.twitter.com/76ZKaB5xtp
You can see the full SportsNet segment here, including the emotional embrace between Utley and Smeltzer.