|Not Hendu's 1983 Donruss card|
There must have been one heck of a backlash from collectors for Donruss to so drastically cut production for the 1984 set. I'm sure it had absolutely nothing to do with Donruss almost completely repeating their set design from 1982, or having printed far more cards than anyone was going to buy. Yes, it had to have been fan reaction to the exclusion of Hendu. So Dave Henderson's 1983 Donruss card is officially Missing In Action.
|1983 Fleer card back|
While not exactly blazing any trails, they were the first set of the 1980s to revive the player mugshots on the backs of their cards, something not seen since Topps last employed the feature in their 1971 set.
Topps, having already made Dave the centerpiece to the Seattle Mariners Future Stars card in the 1982 set, not only made the obvious decision to include him in the 1983 set, they even included him in a photo using their newly discovered Sunlight Photographic TechnologyTM, that allowed them to present players in something other than a cloudy, hazy, murky posed photo from spring training. (Just a slight digression here, but why, when 90% of photos from the 70s & 80s that were obviously taken before the season, in spring training camps in Florida....The Sunshine State, were they always apparently taken on overcast days or at dusk? Players spent upwards of 8 hours in the sunshine! Were the photographers all vampires?)
Much like Fleer, Topps also resurrected the close-up portrait shot of every player, including it on the front of the card. In many cases this resulted in very redundant double close-up cards (see #46, Richard Dotson), but it resulted in one of the more popular sets of the 1980s. Despite landing solidly in the checklists for Fleer and Topps, Dave didn't make it into either company's 1983 sticker sets, so these are the only two documented cards he had that year.
Dave had a decent 1983 season, usually hitting in the #3 or #5 spot in the heart of the batting order. He led Seattle in hits with 130 (hitting .269 on the season). Much like this season, there were rarely any Mariners on base to be driven in, so his 24 doubles, 5 triples and 17 home runs only amounted to 55 runs batted in (good for 2nd on the team). Dave held his own on a last place team lacking any real stars.