PITTSBURGH -- The Pirates, of all teams, have provided some cover to the Steelers and their miserable start.
Postseason baseball has returned to Pittsburgh for the first time since 1992 as the Pirates will host the Cincinnati Reds in the National League wild-card playoff game Tuesday night at PNC Park.
While the Pirates scuffled through one losing season after another following Francisco Cabrera's hit in Game 7 of the 1992 NLCS that broke the hearts of Pittsburgh fans, the Steelers were regular postseason participants.
The Steelers have, in fact, played in 29 postseason games since 1992, including four Super Bowls.
Some of the veteran players were asked what advice they would give to the Pirates prior to their elimination game with the Reds.
“Have fun, relish in the moment of the opportunity that you have to be there. Just go out there and give it everything you have,” Steelers safety Ryan Clark said. “One thing I remember about playoff games is when you do lose them you don’t want it to be that you left anything on the field and felt like you did what you had to do to allow your team to win, and I know they will.”
Pittsburgh’s major professional sports teams have a history of supporting one another, and the Steelers have gotten behind the Pirates’ run to the postseason.
“I know the fans are excited, we are excited and they will be excited,” quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said. “It’s probably different in baseball compared to football because going into a Super Bowl or a game like this you tell guys not to get over-excited because your adrenaline can get the best of you. In baseball I don’t know if it’s the same philosophy or not. Maybe you want that adrenaline.”
And Roethlisberger’s advice to the Pirates?
“Just win,” he said. “Find whatever it takes to win.”