Pittsburgh Steelers rookies throw out first pitch, tour PNC Park before the Pirates game
Pittsburgh Steelers rookies Joshua Dobbs and Colin Holba didn't hide the fact they are thrilled to be the newest members of the Steelers organization. They had plenty of great things to say about the city of Pittsburgh itself and the other teams in town.
During a break from their organized team activities, they took the opportunity to enjoy the other sports the Steel City has to offer.
Dobbs, a fourth-round quarterback from the University of Tennessee, and Holba, a sixth-round long snapper from the University of Louisville, were among several Steelers to take in batting practice Tuesday before the Pirates' game against the D-backs:
One of the more special moments came when Steelers running back James Conner and Pirates right-hander Jameson Taillon -- both cancer survivors -- greeted each other during batting practice. Conner was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma in December 2015, while Taillon was diagnosed with testicular cancer earlier in May.
First-round pick T.J. Watt threw out Tuesday's first pitch to Conner, a native of nearby Erie, Pa., and former University of Pittsburgh running back. Both were wearing personalized No. 17 Pirates jerseys and both shook hands with Pirates manager Clint Hurdle.
Those moments were examples of the support between Pittsburgh professional teams. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin visits the Pirates every year during Spring Training. That support is another reason Dobbs was glad to be at his first Pirates game. "We are glad to get out and just show support to the other teams in the city," Dobbs said. "We are looking forward to enjoying the game tonight. ... It will be a good opportunity to meet some (Pirates players)."
"Everybody is super helpful, super friendly," Holba said of the franchise that has won six Super Bowls. "Helping you make the adjustment from college to professional. I don't think there is a better organization to go to."
The two rookies also had kind words for the other professional organizations in Pittsburgh. The Penguins beat the Nashville Predators 5-3 in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals on Monday. Dobbs was at PPG Paints Arena to take it all in.
"The Stanley Cup is in town," Dobbs said. "There is local support for the Steelers, local support for the Pirates. [Pittsburgh] is definitely a sports town, which is very cool to see."