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June 20, 2007



Is it OK if I sit here?

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Brand-new Sovereign Bank Stadium in York, Pa., was about to open to the public last Friday. That didn't leave Todd McCormick much time. Professional baseball had not been played in the city in 38 years, and the home opener for the Atlantic League's York Revolution was sold out – meaning all 5,200 seats would be filled. And Todd, a student at nearby Dallastown Area High School, was determined to be the first occupant of every one of them. So, by prior arrangement, he and three members of his family entered the empty park shortly before noon and headed for Row N in Section 1 of the right field boxes. With younger brother Nolan standing by to soak his head with water occasionally, Todd took a deep breath and began his quest. He even had a system: As he dropped into each seat, he'd reach over and fold down the one next to it, working his way around to Section 26 by the left field foul pole. Meanwhile, his mother, Tara, and an uncle offered encouragement and kept him supplied with a bottled energy drink. Somehow, he kept up the pace, averaging a fraction under 30 seats per minute, which afforded no opportunity to stop and sample the view. Still, he finished before the gates opened and afterward had the whole game to relax and watch from behind the Revolution dugout. Alas, the home team, which had played its previous games in the opponent's park or in neutral Camden, N.J., lost to the Newark (N.J.) Bears, 7-4. By the way, Todd, who's also a competitive swimmer, had a meet the following morning. No word on how well he did.

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