PLAYOFF EXIT *

The upstarts kept grinding through the regular season,
eventually edging out their hated rivals
who seemed to have an ironclad lock on the pennant.

They ultimately prevailed in the opening round of the playoffs,
winning the crucial game five decisively
after an explosive offensive outburst in the first inning.

It seemed like a return to form for a storied franchise.
But then they got swept in a blink, in a blur.
They struck out scores of times, went out with a whimper.

Cue the off-season of second guessing and introspection,
tough decisions for pending free agents, a winter of sober
reflection on what could have been, what should have gone better.