Jeff Juden bigraphy, stories - American baseball player

Jeff Juden : biography

January 19, 1971 -

Jeffrey Daniel Juden (born January 19, 1971 in Salem, Massachusetts) is a former Major League Baseball player. He is and weighs 270 lbs. He batted and threw right-handed.

Juden was one of the top high school pitching prospects in the nation after his senior season while leading Salem High to the state championship. He is in the discussion of being one of the best high school pitchers in Mass history as a pitcher at Salem High School. He was named the Gatorade Massachusetts Baseball Player of the Year, and the Houston Astros selected him with the 12th overall pick in the first round of the 1989 June draft. He began his professional career that year with Sarasota of the Florida State League, advancing quickly through the minors. Juden made his major league debut on September 15, 1991, becoming the youngest active player in baseball that year when he appeared in relief of Chris Gardner in a game against the Cincinnati Reds.

Despite his early promise and some degree of success as a strikeout artist, Juden struggled to establish himself in the majors. He lacked control, often walking more than four batters per nine innings, he gave up home runs at a greater-than-average rate, and he experienced a notable lack of success in holding opposing baserunners. His best season was probably 1997, where he pitched 161 innings for the Montreal Expos and Cleveland Indians, compiling an 11–6 record with 136 strikeouts and a 4.46 ERA. All in all, he would pitch for eight major league teams. He enjoyed one impressive day with the bat, hitting a grand slam on August 25, 1995, helping to set an obscure record as the third National League pitcher to do so that season.

Juden was involved in a large number of trades throughout the course of his career. He and closer Doug Jones were sent to the Philadelphia Phillies after the 1993 season in exchange for Mitch Williams. In 1995, he and prospect Tommy Eason went to the San Francisco Giants for infielder Mike Benjamin. Two years later, Juden moved from the Montreal Expos to the Indians for reliever Steve Kline at the trading deadline, and after that season ended, he and Marquis Grissom went to the Milwaukee Brewers, in a deal for Mike Fetters, Ben McDonald, and Ron Villone. This deal was enveloped in controversy after it became clear that McDonald had suffered a career-ending shoulder injury shortly before it had been completed.

Juden inadvertently ignited a public debate when, on May 20, 1998, a column by San Francisco Chronicle writer Tim Keown about a lawsuit by NBA player Latrell Sprewell suggested that Sprewell hire "the law firm of Juden, Juden, and Juden," a reference to Juden's personality. However, as "Juden" is German for "Jews", some people inferred not only a stereotypical reference to Jewish lawyers, but a reference to the Holocaust. (The remark was changed to "Jeff Juden and Associates" in later printings of that day's paper to avoid any confusion[].)

Juden last pitched in the major leagues with the New York Yankees in 1999. He retired after that season, and an attempt at a comeback in 2004 with the Nashua Pride of the independent Atlantic League proved unsuccessful. He ended his career with a 27–32 record, 441 strikeouts, and a 4.81 ERA in 533 career major league innings.

During Juden's stint with the Indians, he wore #7.

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