Awesome. For the uninitiated – which I have no choice but to assume would be most of you (we are talking about a minor league baseball team here) – every year, the St. Paul Saints, a member of the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball, hold a Name the Pig contest, where fans can vote on a clever name for the season’s pig mascot. Over the previous 18-year history of the team, the Saints’ porky mascot has been bestowed a name which is a play-on the name of a celebrity/public figure of the day, such as Kevin Bacon, Brat Favre, Slumhog Millionaire, Boarack Obama, Notorious P.I.G. and Piggy Smalls. And this year was no different. Allow me the honor of introducing to you, Justin Bieboar, who made his first appearance Thursday night at the Saints’ season home opener at Midway Stadium.
Justin Bieboar is only one-month old and the name beat out such competitors as Oprah Pigfrey, Conan O’Briham, Natalie Porkman (The Black Swine), Shaquille O’Squeal, Squeally Dan, Buckingham, Brat Blyleven and Piggyleaks. And as the Saints point out, Justin Bieboar has quite a lot in common with the tween sensation for who he is named:
The four-legged swine shares many similarities with his tween counterpart. Bieber rose to fame instantaneously and has had numerous platinum hits while the Saints four-legged mascot also rose to fame when it was first introduced and helps rally Saints teams to get hits. Bieber is considered a teen idol while the Saints pig is just considered an idol. There is no truth to the rumor the Bieboar will have the same hairstyle as Bieber.
“Midway Stadium has played host to numerous musical sensations over the years including Bob Dylan, Hootie and the Blowfish, R.E.M. and Willie Nelson but never for more than one night at a time” said Saints Executive Vice President/General Manager Derek Sharrer. “We consider ourselves and our fans very fortunate to have a performer of this pig’s stature committed to entertain at Saints games throughout the summer.”
You have to love the way the Saints do not take themselves too seriously, although it should not come as a surprise, given the team is owned Mike Veeck, the son of the legendary Bill Veeck, who was the owner at one time or another of several baseball teams, including the Chicago White Sox, where he showed he had a flair for the absurd and entertaining by way of his offbeat publicity stunts, most notably Disco Demolition Night. Serving as co-owner of the Saints – although he takes a very limited role in operations – is none other than Bill Murray, so you can probably get a pretty good idea what kind of outfit the St. Paul Saints are and how the team is run.
But that’s all backstory. The real story here is Justin Bieboar. Look at him. Ain’t he adorable? Far better looking than that no-talent hack who is his namesake.
Saints Catch Bieboar Fever in 2011 [St. Paul Saints Official Site]