After a tremendous season of baseball, the San Francisco Giants were knocked out of the first round of the playoffs this year by the wild card team. Now I know how Atlanta and St. Louis felt last year, when an upstart team came into the playoffs via the wild card and kicked the living shit out of the National League’s best. Of course, the NL pennant was the highest the Giants would rank, but regardless of the heartbreaking conclusion of the 2002 season, I remained positive that the Giants would maintain their playoff-calibre qualities through to the next season.

As I look back on the numbers for 2003 (100 wins, best pitcher in baseball, two home runs behind Willie Mays), I’m forced to come to the same conclusion: There is always next year.