hdanning.jpgHarry Danning, an All-Star catcher for the New York Giants, died on Nov. 29 of natural causes. He was 93.
The Los Angeles native was only 22 when he made his major league debut in 1933. Danning was the backup receiver to Gus Mancuso until 1938 when he became the Giants’ regular catcher.
Known as Harry the Horse (after a character in the Broadway play “Guys and Dolls”), Danning caught for 801 games and was behind the plate for five games in the 1936 and 1937 World Series. He was named to four National League All-Star teams (1938-1941) and was voted the best catcher in baseball in 1940. Danning was a .300 hitter in three consecutive seasons; his career batting average was .285.
After 10 seasons with the Giants, Danning turned in his uniform and enlisted in the U.S. Army. He served during World War II, but was unable to resume his baseball career because of arthritic knees. Instead, he became a minor league coach, then worked as a car dealer, a newspaper and magazine distributor and an insurance executive.
Danning was the oldest living Jewish major leaguer and a member of the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame and the New York Jewish Sports Hall of Fame. His older brother, Ike Danning, who played for the St. Louis Browns, died in 1983.
Statistics From Baseball-Almanac.com