Hart, who had surgery on his right knee in January, said he had been doing exercises to strengthen his quad muscles, water aerobics and throwing as part of his rehab. He said he had watched every game on television from his home, but he was thrilled to rejoin the club.
"It's awesome," he said. "At home, I felt like I was a super fan. Now I feel like I'm actually part of the team. Being around the guys, being in the clubhouse, I feel like I can contribute." Hart said he hoped to go on a 10-day Minor League rehab assignment before returning.
"I missed spring, so I can go get 10 days down there and as soon as the 30th, I'm ready to go," he said.
Hart said it was incredible to watch the team start 2-8 and then go on a hot streak.
"Going from 2-8 with several question marks to being relevant," he said. "It's been nice to have these guys step up. It seems like every night someone is stepping up. The bullpen has been great. I want to be back, obviously, but I don't have to force myself to do more because the guys are stepping up and doing well."
Joe DiGiovanni is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.