Oneil Cruz had FaceTime with namesake Paul O'Neill before Yankees took on Pirates


Pirates touted rookie Oneil Cruz got to (virtually) meet the inspiration behind his name at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday night.

Cruz was named after Yankees legend Paul O’Neill, as Cruz’s father and former minor leaguer Rafael Cruz was a big fan of The Warrior, and before Wednesday’s series finale against the Bombers, O’Neill FaceTimed Cruz and gave him a pinstriped jersey with his now retired No. 21 on the back.

Cruz of course couldn’t choose 21 with Pittsburgh, as it’s retired by the franchise to honor Roberto Clemente.

O’Neill said he will be signing the jersey he gave to Cruz once they are able to meet in person, but Cruz was clearly excited about meeting virtually for now, from the Yankee Stadium dugout.

Follow Ryan Chichester on Twitter: @ryanchichester1

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