Cubs players embrace the Pokemon Go craze

Pokemon Go is sweeping the nation. Or has swept nation. Pokemon Go has occupied our country, basically. The Pokemon are now the trainers.

As the navigation-based app continues to grow and derail its own servers, pretty much everyone has given this Pokemon thing a try–most recently, the Chicago Cubs baseball team, which is trying the game out to mixed results. 

Per ESPN’s Jesse Rogers, some Cubs players are better at catching them all than others. While a couple guys have no idea what these imaginary battle pets are.

Jason Hammel is on the relative upswing among the team’s clubhouse Pokemasters. 

"I’ve caught two so far," Hammel said. "the first one might be a gimme so they can hook you. I’m going to show it to my son, and he will love that." 

Hammel confirmed that the game is also spreading through family, calling his younger brother "obsessed" with the GPS-centric app.

Other players, like Tommy La Stella, are faring less well.

"I did download the Pokemon thing when I was home for the All-Star break," La Stella said. "Tried it a couple times, couldn’t figure it out, deleted it. "My sister plays it. I did attempt it."

Albert Almora has seen the game, but doesn’t know what it is or whether to trust this apparent mind-controlling device.

"Oh my god, yes," Almora said. "I’ve seen people walking the street going nuts with it. I’m like, ‘What is that?’"

Almora’s friends have let him know that he is sitting on a virtual gold mine of Poke-tunity as a traveling ballplayer.

"My buddies from back home were like, ‘You would find, like, the coolest ones because you travel.’ Maybe I’ll catch a Pokemon in center field."

One of the players who hasn’t embraced Pokemon Go as his new overlord is John Lacker, who dropped a few gems when asked if he was playing the game.

"Huh?" Lackey asked. "I don’t know what you’re talking about."

Once having the game explained to him, Lackey issued another dad-ly statement. 

"I don’t have any games on my phone," Lackey said. "Oh, wait. I do have ‘Madden’ on my phone. My son put that on. Shuts him up sometimes at a restaurant."

Video games: shutting up the kids and bringing the family together.

Dan is on Twitter. He caught a wild L the other day.