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Business News/ Sports / Why A-Rod Is Grateful for Taylor Swift and Beyoncé

Why A-Rod Is Grateful for Taylor Swift and Beyoncé


The former Yankee on his four daily hours of self-care, what makes for a good hire and advice from Warren Buffett.

Alex Rodriguez says that when he’s hiring, he looks for the same qualities George Steinbrenner sought for the New York Yankees.Premium
Alex Rodriguez says that when he’s hiring, he looks for the same qualities George Steinbrenner sought for the New York Yankees.

ALEX RODRIGUEZ, the 14-time Major League Baseball all-star, has established himself as a businessman since he left the dugout in 2016. He manages a variety of real estate holdings and companies under his investment firm, A-Rod Corp, including the Minnesota Timberwolves NBA team, which he co-owns. On the side, he says he’s journaling toward a book about the lessons he’s learned in business and baseball.

“I just love to write," says Rodriguez, 48. “I always say the great teachers are even better students. And I would say I’m probably a 90% student, 10% mentor. I have a lot to learn. I feel like I’m just getting started in my journey." He says he has no set plans for the manuscript.

Rodriguez lives in New York City, Miami and Minneapolis with his girlfriend, fitness and lifestyle coach Jaclyn Cordeiro. He has two daughters, Natasha, 18, and Ella, 15, with his ex-wife Cynthia Scurtis. Here, he talks about dropping off his oldest daughter at college, what he thinks of the MLB’s new rules and the pop superstars he’s happy his daughters have as role models.

What time do you get up on Mondays, and what’s the first thing you do after waking up?

When I have the girls, usually my morning starts around 6:30. I have breakfast with them, then drive them to school and head right to the gym.

What does that part of your routine look like?

A combination of cardiovascular, some type of lifting. When I come home, it’s usually some meditation, stretching. I mix in a little cold plunge, sometimes a little sauna and just kind of get out in the sun a little bit and think, meditate, pray. I try to focus on 8 a.m. to noon as my time. I’m in the office every day from 12 to 6 p.m.

How about when the workday is over?

I’m very routine-oriented, because I played professional baseball for 25 years. I always wore my uniform. There’s a little bit of a military inside me. My stepbrother spent years in the U.S. Air Force. Jac, my girlfriend, we started [taking] long walks after dinner, then working to prepare for the next day.

You dropped Natasha off at college last month. How is the transition going?

She’s never done better. I’m an emotional roller coaster. I’ve been talking to Cynthia, my greatest friend in the world and my co-parent to my two girls. She’s given me therapy. She’s a psychologist. It’s been working, but I’ve been really depressed, down and out. On the way to the airport when I dropped her off, I was a big box of mess.

People think of athletes as paragons of health and wellness, but earlier this year, you said you’re struggling with gum disease. What was that diagnosis like?

Any time they say “disease" is super alarming. The good news is I found out early, not late. Over 65 million Americans have it, and it’s even more prevalent in my community, Black and brown [men]. There is a correlation between oral health and poor health for your overall body. I thought it was important for people to know more. [Rodriguez is a paid spokesperson for the oral-health company OraPharma.]

Do you interview everyone who gets a job at A-Rod Corp?

I used to. I can’t anymore. We have probably 200 team members today. I have about five direct reports. Obviously I hired all of them. I talk with them daily, multiple times. What we’re looking for is a team player. Someone that’s a long-term thinker. And then someone that’s coachable. The same qualities I want working at A-Rod Corp are the same qualities that I think George Steinbrenner looked to bring into our club of the New York Yankees.

As an owner of the Timberwolves, what’s been the best part of becoming involved in a different pro sport and what’s been the most challenging?

It’s such a new space for me. I look at my good friend Magic Johnson, who was a legendary basketball player and now is a legendary businessperson and owns a baseball team. About 25 years ago when he started mentoring me, he basically handed me his blueprint book.

You seem to have a great friendship with Timberwolves shooting guard Anthony Edwards.

Everything about Anthony Edwards is fascinating. He’s wildly talented, but he’s also very, very likable. Because I played baseball, not basketball, there’s not this embedded competition about who’s better. I played for 25 years in professional sports. I was lucky enough to be part of a world-championship team. I’ve made tons of mistakes, and I can take those mistakes and lead with them and hopefully [the players I work with] can avoid some of the mistakes that I’ve made. But I think because of my mistakes, I’m in a position to be an important mentor to some of the younger folks.

What do you think of the new baseball rules?

I think Rob Manfred and Tony Clark have done an incredible job with really making the game better. Attendance is up 9.6 percent. The games are about 30 minutes shorter, which is great for the young demos. The game has become a little bit more athletic, a little bit more contact, so hopefully bringing the glory days back of baseball, the game that we all fell in love with. So I think it’s doing wonderful.

Your ticketing startup, Jump, is trying to compete with Ticketmaster at a time when many customers are looking for a more level playing field. Of fan swarms, are you a Swiftie or in the Beyhive?

Oh, I’m both. What they’re doing is incredible. I mean, what they’re doing for young women out there, equality, all the good things that we want our young daughters to have. I mean, Beyoncé and Taylor, they couldn’t have two better.

You’ve talked about how you cold-called Warren Buffett and he became your mentor. What’s the most important or unexpected thing you’ve learned from him?

It’s just the long term. No shortcuts. Always be a gentleman and pick your lane. Go narrow and deep and master that. But really think about nothing short term.

What do you do for self-care?

I get a facial maybe once every six weeks. That feels good.

What’s your most prized possession?

My championship ring with the 2009 Yankees.

What do you splurge on?

We spend two weeks out in the Mediterranean every summer. It’s my time of the year. I always say, “Work really hard for 50." And those are my two weeks. And I do that with my daughters and it’s great. I lock them in the boat. They can’t get out. Fantastic.

What’s one piece of advice you’ve gotten that’s guided you?

Surround yourself with great people. You’re an average of the five people you surround yourself with.

5 Monday Must-Haves

8 hours of sleep“That’s No. 1."

Coffee“A really nice hot black coffee."

Oatmeal“My warm oatmeal with eggs in it."

StairMaster“I need to have a good workout where I’m breaking a good sweat and I’m getting a good lift."

Floss“My oral health is very important." [Rodriguez is a paid spokesmanfor oral-health company OraPharma.]

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