Former MLB player and broadcaster Dave Henderson passed away suddenly today of a heart attack. Henderson’s death came a month after receiving a kidney transplant.
Henderson played 14 seasons for the Seattle Mariners, Boston Red Sox, Oakland A’s, San Francisco Giants and the Kansas City Royals. In recent years, Henderson provided color commentary on Mariners’ TV and radio broadcasts.
Fondly known as Hendu, he is best known for hitting a game tying home run for the Red Sox in Game 5 of the 1986 ALCS against the California Angels. The Angels were one strike away from winning their first AL pennant, but then Angels’ closer Donnie Moore hung a slider to Henderson. The Red Sox came back down 3-1 to win the ALCS. Sadly, Moore’s career was never the same and three years later he took his own life.
As for Henderson, he very nearly made Red Sox history again when he slugged yet another game tying home run in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series. But a wild pitch by Bob Stanley and a groundball between Bill Buckner’s legs would rear their ugly heads.
But Henderson would be an integral part of an A’s team which won three consecutive AL pennants between 1988-1990 including a World Series ring in 1989. Hendu would also earn his lone AL All-Star selection with the A’s in 1991. He would finish his career with a lifetime .258 batting average, 1324 hits, 197 HR and 708 RBI.
I leave you with Hendu jumping sky high after saving the 1986 Red Sox’ season. As Al Michaels put it, this was a home run for the ages.
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