On this day in 2010 there weren't a lot of pleasant things said about Corey Hart in this space. Hart was a 2008 NL All Star but had regressed mightily since that point, hitting just .239/.263/.396 after the break that season and following it up with a .260/.335/.418 performance in 2009 with just 12 home runs. There weren't many of us excited about Hart's recent performance, and that was made all the worse when he won his arbitration hearing against the team and was awarded a $4.8 million salary for the upcoming season.
The troubles with Hart carried on into spring training: Amid concerns that he was playing with less than 20/20 eyesight Hart struggled in Cactus League play and actually lost the Opening Day starting job to recent acquisition Jim Edmonds. Hart rebounded fast, however, and went on to hit a career-high 31 home runs and make an All Star appearance despite the fact that he wasn't even on the ballot.
Before this day two years ago, Hart was a .273/.326/.470 career hitter. He's hit .284/.348/.518 since, and now paying $4.8 million for his services in 2010 doesn't seem like such a big deal anymore.