Not long after Spring Training was suspended nearly two weeks ago, the Pirates players’ text thread started buzzing with ideas. They wanted to support hospital workers overwhelmed and overworked amid the coronavirus pandemic. They wanted to buoy local businesses that might be impacted by shutdowns and social distancing.

They wanted to help Pittsburgh, even if they weren’t there.

That led them to the plan they executed on Monday. Pirates players purchased more than 400 pizzas plus pasta from Slice on Broadway (located at PNC Park) and Pizzeria Davide (in the Strip District) and had lunch delivered, with help from Pirates employees, to the staff at Allegheny General Hospital.