Some of you may remember a story from the New York Times back in 2007 that detailed some complaints from tenants of an apartment complex in the Tampa area owned by Alex Rodriguez. While Selena Roberts was guilty of taking some liberties with the subject matter at the time, it appears that conditions haven’t improved at his properties.
According to David Hill of NBCMiami.com, the Normandy Park Apartment complex recently came under fire from local housing officials for safety code violations.
A-Rod’s tenants identified a number of red flags to city officials, including overflowing trash receptacles, rusty pipes, and a heinously murky swimming pool which looked more like a science experiment than a place to cool off on a sunny day.
A local news team in Tampa also reported on the story Sunday evening, putting some extra heat on A-Rod and his management team.
“It’s amazing a person that’s got that much money can have properties that look like this,” one tenant told Tampa’s Fox 13 News. Another tenant called Rodriguez a slumlord.
But according to TMZ, the property managers employed by Rodriguez to oversee the apartments have begun cleaning up the complex and drained the offending pool. TMZ said a few of the tenants at Normandy Park said “everyone responsible seemed to step it up” after they first posted photos of the complex on Friday.
I’m sincerely wondering how much Rodriguez has to do with the day-to-day operations of this place. I’m guessing just about zero. Either way, it’s nice to hear that they are making some changes, even if it took the media to kick them in the butt to make it happen.
The Athletics followed Friday’s 3-0 shutout with a rookie-led home run derby on Saturday afternoon, watching not one, not two, but three rookies belt their first major league home runs off of the White Sox’ James Shields.
Right fielder Matt Olson was the first to strike, taking Shields deep on a first-pitch, two-run blast in the first inning for his first home run in 49 major league plate appearances:
Fellow outfielder Jaycob Brugman duplicated his teammate’s results in the second inning with a solo home run, his first extra-base hit of any kind since he made his debut on June 9:
In the third, with a comfortable 4-0 lead backing two scoreless frames from Oakland right-hander Daniel Gossett, Franklin Barreto took his shot at Shields. After getting the call several hours prior to Saturday’s game, he became the fastest of the three rookies to record his first big league homer, going yard on a 2-2 changeup and driving in Bruce Maxwell to give the A’s a six-run advantage.
The Athletics currently lead the White Sox 8-2 in the top of the sixth inning.
The Athletics called up their top prospect on Saturday, inserting shortstop Franklin Barreto into the lineup for their second game against the White Sox. Barreto was originally scheduled to make his major league debut on Sunday, but got a head start after Jed Lowrie sustained a minor knee sprain in Friday’s 3-0 win and was scratched from Saturday’s lineup.
Barreto, 21, has been rapidly climbing the rungs of the A’s minor league system after getting dealt by the Blue Jays in 2014. He got his first taste of Triple-A action late last year, going 6-for-17 with three RBI and getting caught stealing in two attempts. He fared little better this spring, slashing .281/.326/.428 with eight home runs and a .754 OPS through his first 309 PA in Nashville.
While his minor league production has been solid, if underwhelming for a prospect of his caliber, the A’s are expected to give the rookie infielder a long leash with both Marcus Semien and Chad Pinder sitting on the disabled list. Pinder landed on the 10-day DL after suffering a left hamstring strain on Friday. Semien, meanwhile, is still working his way back from the 60-day DL with a right wrist fracture and likely won’t rejoin the team until he completes a rehab assignment with High-A Stockton.