It’s a cold, gray New England afternoon in May, and a morning of heavy rain has turned to mist at Seaside Park in Marblehead, Mass. Jeff Juden has arrived for an interview to reflect on the fact that it’s been 30 years since the Salem, Mass., legend was selected by the Houston Astros in the first round — 12th overall — of the MLB draft.
But Juden’s not getting out of his car.
A little over 500 feet stands between his SUV in a parking lot and three members of an editorial staff who are waiting to meet the 6-foot-8 right-hander in the Seaside Park grandstand. Juden’s phone rings, and he is asked if he’ll join the writer, photographer and editor for a photo shoot.
Juden declines. He’d rather not walk across the wet outfield grass because he’s wearing leather shoes.