A-Rod Is Not A Pleasant Landlord

When people defend Alex Rodriguez — because, you know, in a few circles, he's somewhat unpopular — they often point to the amount of charity work he does. But there might be less to that charity business that meets the proverbial eye. And he's not much of a landlord.

Selena Roberts, who's about to peddle her wares at SI, tells of A-Rod's housing complexes in the Tampa area as cheap, glorified slums.

A-Rod isn't exactly a slumlord — some renters interviewed at his other properties had milder complaints — but he has become a landlord caricature among dwellers who hold him accountable for, say, the stack of molding mattresses by the dumpster at Newport Villas on MacDill Avenue.

A-Rod is the face on their leaky faucets, and yet his name isn't in the welcome kit. Rodriguez's brother-in-law, Constantine Scurtis, is the company manager — the one whose signature is on nearly $50 million in mortgages for properties in Tampa, according to records — but some of the cashiers and cooks who live at places like Newport Riverside know who holds their house keys.

To them, he isn't A-Rod, a regular-season crackerjack on the verge of a Yankees deal potentially worth $300 million. To them, he is Tight-Rod, an apartment tycoon, who, renters say, has jacked late fees to $100 from $50 on units that run around $600 a month.

To make this clear: Alex Rodriguez is jacking up late fees on apartments he owns. Though to be fair, he has to give 5 percent of that to Scott Boras. Still.

A-Rod's Properties And Charity Suggest Some Stinginess [New York Times]