Do not pass 'Go': Playing Pokémon at Petco Park

SAN DIEGO -- I owe an apology to the Padres, their employees, their fans, and to the city of San Diego.

Specifically, I owe an apology to a particular Petco Park staffer, who was simply doing his job, pushing a cart along a concourse, to whom I became an obstacle and an unpredictable annoyance.

Why? I was playing Pokémon Go, trying to catch those pesky creatures in the confines of this year's MLB All-Star festivities. Call it Petco Park Pokémon -- and call me a jerk for having no idea that said employee was desperately slaloming in a vain attempt to get around me as I stared at my cell phone, head down, hunting away.

I'm way too old to truly understand how to play Pokémon Go -- or why you'd play it -- but I adore augmented reality and by the end of Monday afternoon I had actually managed to catch a few of them -- three to be exact, so not exactly catching them all, I realize -- including one little bugger hovering over the playing field just before the start of the Home Run Derby.

I shot Pokéballs at it -- most of which landed on the field and rolled toward the outfield walls (kind of how I might do, best-case-scenario, if I were to participate in the Home Run Derby myself). After several misses, I finally nabbed him, saving the Petco Park crowd from the scourge of an angry, airborne blue and purple Zubat.

And the Home Run Derby could begin at last.

So maybe -- and yes, I know this is a stretch -- I don't owe any apologies, but instead deserve a debt of gratitude.

As you laugh at (and not with) me, check out the following screen grabs from my adventures: