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Notable Notables: Jeff Plympton Sr. and Jeff Plympton Jr.: Like Father, Like Son

Compiled by Paula Kowalewski Sullivan from interviews and various sources*

Some of Wrentham’s Notables are quite historic but for this article, we are coming into the current times! We feature a father-son story that has Red Sox connections as well as King Philip High connections.

Jeffrey Hunter Plympton Sr. was born in Framingham November 1965 to Bay State natives Marcia and Warren Plympton. His mother was from Southborough, and the couple lived in Framingham for a while after marriage. Later they moved, and Jeff and his older brother Steve grew up in Plainville.

Jeff graduated from King Philip High School in Wrentham and as readers know, the school draws students from Norfolk, Plainville, and Wrentham. Jeff played basketball and soccer, as well as baseball, at King Philip. Though he’d never played soccer before his freshman year, he was chosen MVP of the team in his junior year. Soccer did result in a knee surgery, and basketball earned him a broken thumb. Baseball left him relatively unscathed in his high school years.

In the summer of 1983, Plympton played in the highly competitive Boston Park League for the Conley Club team. Jeff had a 23-3 pitching record for King Philip under coach Gary Lombard. As a youth, Plympton often took in games at Fenway Park, perhaps a dozen games a year. Drafted in the 10th round of the 1987 MLB First-Year Player Draft by the Red Sox after his junior season at the University of Maine, Plympton pitched in the New England Collegiate All-Star Game at Fenway Park, the College World Series, and for the bronze medalist US National Team in the 1986 World Championships.

A member of the Sox’s farm system for most of his career, Plympton was fortunate to spend some time during the 1991 season as part of the major league team. On June 15 of that year, Jeff took the mound at Fenway to pitch the top of the ninth inning. His major league debut was impressive – a scoreless inning, leaving two runners stranded in a 13-3 Red Sox win over the Angels. Despite only getting four appearances for the hometown team, Plympton’s ERA was perfect at 0.00 during his short time with the team.

The rest of Plympton’s career was spent playing for the Red Sox’s AAA affiliate in Pawtucket until his retirement in 1993. Nineteen years later, Plympton was invited back to wear a Red Sox uniform one more time as part of the team’s celebration of Fenway Park’s 100th anniversary in April 2012. Once again Plympton had a chance to walk to the mound of a Fenway Park that had changed quite a bit since his appearances in the early 1990s.

In 2004, Wrentham hired Plympton as the town’s first full-time recreation director. His task at the time was to raise the funds to build a new athletic complex, which we now know as the 80-acre William Rice Recreation Complex. The work became Plympton’s life calling, and he is still at it more than 22 years later. The facility boasts a full-size baseball field, softball fields, multi-purpose fields, volleyball courts, walki