Ex-player hit home run in Vegas career

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Singer, actor and impressionist Danny Gans, a one-time minor-league baseball player who spent more than a decade as one of the most popular entertainers in Las Vegas, died suddenly Friday. He was 52.

Gans was pronounced dead in his bed shortly after police and paramedics were summoned to a report of a man not breathing at Gans' upscale home in a gated community about 3:45 a.m., Henderson police spokesman Todd Rasmussen said.

Gans' manager and longtime friend, Chip Lightman, described Gans, who had a bit part in 1988's "Bull Durham," as an energetic health nut who watched his diet, loved to perform and relished his involvement in Las Vegas-area fundraisers and philanthropic causes.

In 1995, Gans began a one-man show, "Danny Gans on Broadway: The Man of Many Voices," at the Neil Simon Theatre in New York.

Gans won entertainer of the year honors 12 times in 13 years in a Las Vegas Review-Journal readers poll, his manager said, and his face was a fixture on billboards around town.

He also became well-known as a host of Las Vegas-area charity events.

Ken Ritter is a reporter for the Associated Press.
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