Jesse Danna – Greater New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame
Jesuit High School/LSU/New Orleans Pelicans
Jesse Danna was an outstanding athlete at Jesuit High School who truly excelled on the baseball diamond where he was all‑city and all‑state as a southpaw pitcher. He later won fame as a pitcher for the New Orleans Pelicans in the Southern Association (Class AA) between 1941‑45. He holds the distinction of being the Pelicans’ last 20‑game winner, compiling a 22‑10 record in 1943.
During his Jesuit days, Danna led the Blue Jays to the 1936 high school baseball state championship and the American Legion baseball state title. In 1933, he was the Louisiana state boxing champion in the 112-pound weight class.
After pitching at LSU and helping the Tigers to their first SEC Championship in 1939, Danna signed with the New York Giants in 1941. After seeing limited action with the Jersey City Giants of the International League, he returned south, playing for Atlanta in the Southern Association before joining the Pelicans late in the 1942 season. He pitched for the Pelicans from 1943-47, winning 50 games. including his outstanding 22-10 campaign. From 1948 to 1950, he was a player-manager for the Valley Rebels (Lanett, Ala.) and the Helena (Ark.) Seaporters.
Born March 27, 1918, Danna died on June 28, 2005 at the age of 87.