What does it look like to be on the wrong side of a historic performance? To answer the question we need go no further than Oakland A's manager Bob Melvin. This is how he looked in the immediate aftermath of Thursday night's Game 5 ALDS loss to the Detroit Tigers, . This was a series in which the A's were had two chances to knock of the Tigers and failed both times. The A's have now made the postseason seven times under the Billy Beane regime and failed to escape the first round six times. As for Melvin, he's won 90 or more games four times in eight full seasons as a manager (10 overall) and has absolutely nothing to show for it. Throw in his sole postseason appearance as a player -- an NLCS loss as a member of the 1987 San Francisco Giants, and you have a whole lot of delayed gratification.
Heap a dominant performance by Justin Verlander on top of that and this is what you get:
It's painful to look at. Still, the A's are a well-run team; they should be back in the postseason hunt next year. The glass-half-full interpretation of that is that Melvin and the A's will have another chance to win their first championship since 1989. The glass-half-empty interpretation is that Melvin will have another chance to wear this expression again. Baseball is a harsh mistress.