Before there was Heyward

Updated: April 9, 2010, 10:55 AM ET
By Buster Olney
In the past decade, there was another young player who arrived in the big leagues at age 20 amid high expectations, and he showed the kind of hitting talent that Jason Heyward has. He played in the World Series in his first season and had an at-bat against a legend, a plate appearance that had scouts and rival executives chortling for months: He got knocked down early in the at-bat, got back to his feet and slammed an opposite-field home run.

The pitcher was Roger Clemens, in the 2003 World Series, and the hitter was Miguel Cabrera, who followed up that performance by hitting 33 homers and driving in 112 runs in his first full season. It felt like, at the time, he was headed for one of the great careers in major league history.