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MLB Draft 2012: Houston Astros Surprise With Carlos Correa In First Jeff Luhnow Draft

The experts all tried to convince us that the 2012 MLB Draft had no frontrunner, and after two days of draft results they appear to have been right: The Houston Astros, in their first draft under former St. Louis Cardinals farm czar Jeff Luhnow, took Carlos Correa with the No. 1 overall pick, eschewing both Byron Buxton, who went No. 2, and Mark Appel, who slipped all the way to No. 8 due to signability issues. Luhnow, widely regarded as the key figure in the Cardinals' transformation of their once-dormant farm system, surprised even those wary experts by selecting the the high-upside shortstop; the No. 1 pick was, by draft day widely assumed to come down to Buxton and Appel.

We scouted him at Viva El Birdos back in February; since then his draft stock had only gone up, but few expected him to be the Astros' new top prospect on this side of MLB Draft day. A huge power-threat who could stick at shortstop, Correa definitely has the potential to be this draft's best pick, but it'll take a while for him to realize it. Luhnow appears to be confident about his job prospects in the medium-term, if nothing else.

More MLB Draft 2012 coverage from SB Nation St. Louis: