Vern Champagne

Played for the Tacoma Tigers in the Timber League and for the Tacoma White Sox in the Northwest League in the 1930's under John Heinrick....Also played for Kimball's Sporting Goods in the City League....Played for the Tigers in one of the first night games in Stadium against the House of David who had "Babe" Diedrickson pitching for them. During her warm-up, pitches were thrown like most girls did back then and the big crowd just laughed. She then proceeded to cut loose with her regular pitching style and darn near knocked the catcher over, thus winning the crowd over....Also played for the Tigers when they played the Tokyo Giants on their first trip to the Northwest. Before the game they lined up on the foul line and bowed to the crowd. Clarence Stave was the umpire and never was treated to so much politeness and courtesy as they bowed to him on every close call....Vern usually played the outfield but on one occasion with the White Sox he was asked to catch while Charlie Wry pitched. Stave was umpiring and in a most eloquent manner announced the battery for the day as "Wry and Champagne"....During their team's visits to Tacoma, Vern had the thrill to bat against Satchel Paige, Lefty Grove, and Dizzy Dean.