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MLB Draft 2012: Deven Marrero, SS, Arizona State

Wouldn't it be weird if the Houston Astros, after passing up on Derek Jeter for Phil Nevin the last time they had the No. 1 pick, also passed on the poor man's Derek Jeter?

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Anyway, that's what John Klima tags Arizona State's Deven Marrero as. A major-league quality shortstop on defense with a good, but not great, bat. A poor man's Jeter may be better defensively than Jeter has been (though not as good as Jeter's reputation).

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Here's his summary:

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Gracefully smooth athletic actions at shortstop. Active feet move laterally, possess first step quickness, gets good jumps off good positioning. Soft hands with quick effortless releases flashing above-average arm strength when needed; can make the strong throw from both sides and has arm strength to finish violent double plays. Handsy hitter with level swing plane, straightway and gap to gap. Average major league bat speed with limited power.

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I like the idea of Houston going after a good fielding shortstop who can be a major leaguer at No. 1. Marrero might not have the upside of Troy Tulowitzki, but he could be a very valuable big league starter for 10 years, at least. Isn't that a better bet than a pitcher who may or may not work out? Maybe it's just me, but I'll always lean towards the position players.

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For more on the Houston Astros, check out The Crawfish Boxes.

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