Thursday, October 28, 2010

Favorite Jewish Baseball Player

Inspired by the convergence of the High Holy day season and the baseball postseason, I recently checked out "The Baseball Talmud" from the TBS library. It ranks the best major league Jewish baseball players of all time.

While Sandy Koufax and Hank Greenberg may have been the best from the past, and Ryan Braun might be the best current Jewish player, my favorite is Harry Danning. Harry was a catcher for the NY Giants between 1933 and 1942. Why Harry? His nickname was "Harry the Horse", and he was the inspiration for Frank Loesser when he created the same-named character in my favorite musical, Guys and Dolls. Judaism, baseball and musical theatre - that's my magical combination!

Who have been your favorites, or what encounters have you had with Jewish major leaguers?


  1. Lou Boudreau? At least he was a Red Sox player.

  2. Good one, John. A few years ago the Red Sox actually had three Jewish players on the roster at the same time - Kevin Youkilis, Gabe Kapler and Adam Stern. I don't think we will see that again!

  3. Great Info., Mike! Great convergence of Judaism, Baseball and Musical Theater - as you know, three (3) of my personal favorites as well! I"ll never look at "Harry the Horse" in "Guys and Dolls" the same way again! I hope that you and Julie - and maybe the boys? - can make it to the Show: Thursday, 12/2/10, 8:00 P.M.; Saturday, 12/4/10, 8:00 P.M. and Sunday, 12/5/10, 4:00 P.M. at Congregation Mishkan Tefilah, 300 Hammond Pond Parkway, Chestnut Hill, MA. More info. to follow! Hope all is well with everyone!

  4. Why wouldn't we see that again?

  5. If Mo Berg is not on your list, you need to re-examine your list.

    Not only a great catcher (and, oh yes, played 5 seasons with the BoSox, if that's important to you), a great American (worked for the OSS and spoke multiple languages), and a true patriot, but his deathbed words are reputed to have been: "How did the Mets do today?"

    How great is that?

  6. Seth, thanks for Mo Berg. I was a catcher.