Even without the biggest paycheck in sports history—$252 million for 10 years—Texas Ranger shortstop Alex Rodriguez would be an attention getter. “I think there are two kinds of people,” says his friend, pro volleyball champ Gabrielle Reece, “matte people and shiny people. Alex is a shiny person. Obviously he’s handsome, but it’s almost like he’s glowing from within.” The 6’3″ Rodriguez’s self-assessment? “My best trait has to be my height,” he says, “but I wish I were leaner.” In the off-season, Rodriguez, 25, returns to Miami, where he works closely with the city’s Boys & Girls Club. He attended the after-school program while his mom, Lourdes, worked two jobs to provide for her three children after her husband, Victor, left the family when Rodriguez was 10. “I want to give back to the organization for supporting kids like me,” he says. It’s that sort of dedication that impresses pals like Reece. “Alex is the kind of guy,” she says, “who actually becomes more attractive the longer you’re around him.” But sorry, girls. Although single, A-Rod isn’t A-vailable. Since 1997 he has been dating schoolteacher Cynthia Scurtis.