This was pretty inevitable given the circumstances: 2023’s ballpig for the St. Paul Saints (Triple-A; International League) is Mud Grant, named for the legendary Minnesota Vikings coach, the late Bud Grant.
Mud Grant beat out several deserving and topical names, including Cocaine Boar, Piggleboar and ChatPIG. This season’s pig was selected from more than 1,000 entries in the team’s Name the Pig Contest.
During the previous 30 seasons, the Saints have had a pig mascot and each has had a unique name. Many of the names play on hot topics of the year, current events, or Minnesota legends. Last season, the Saints doubled up with 867530Swine during the first half of the season followed by Chop Gun: MaveRib. In the first season as the Twins Triple-A affiliate they found a pig that could fly, Space Ham. During the pandemic year they made sure the pig went into lockdown with This Little Piggy Stayed Home. In 2019 the championship drought ender was Daenerys Hoggaryen. In 2018 the Saints struck a chord with the younger generation with Porknite. The year before that they tested the political waters with Alternative Fats. In 2016 the Saints honored one of the most iconic artists with Little Red Porkette. During the first season at CHS Field the Saints paid homage to Lowertown artists they went with Pablo Pigasso. In 2014 the Saints received the Colboar bump with Stephen Colboar. The 2012 season saw two mascots for the first time: Kim Lardashian and Kris Hamphries. Past names have included Mackleboar (2013), Brat Favre (2010), Slumhog Millionaire (2009), Boarack Ohama (2008), Notorious P.I.G. – Piggy Smalls (2003) and Kevin Bacon (2001).
The late Grant passed away on March 11, followed by days and days and days of mourning for the Minnesota icon.