The Marlins are said to be making progress on a possible deal with the No. 6 overall pick from last month's draft, University of North Carolina third baseman Colin Moran. And that's a very good thing, because their next two draft picks -- left-handed prep pitcher Matt Krook and Orlando prep shortstop Ben Deluzio -- may well both be choosing college over the Marlins.

Miami's scouting and player development people have done a very nice job over the years, but now, with the team 30-52 despite some extremely good young players (Giancarlo Stanton, Jose Fernandez, Jacob Turner, etc.), is when they can least afford to waste draft picks.

The Marlins are believed to have offered at least the $3.5 million slot to Moran, generous in light of the fact that the vast majority of the top 15 picks signed for under slot money, including the Nos. 1, 3 and 5 picks. People familiar with the Moran talks suggest there's no big impediment expected to hold up the deal, though one person said there was still work to be done and another suggested the player was seeking some extra perks. (Moran's adviser, Casey Close, didn't return messages.)

Moran, a left-handed hitter with a crazy-good walk-to-strikeout ratio (almost 3-to-1) and the nephew of longtime big-leaguer B.J. Surhoff, had to wait to start negotiations until his UNC team was eliminated from the College World Series. But he may have gained some leverage with a couple of unfortunate surprises for the Marlins involving their second and third picks. Miami, which may be in line for the No. 1 overall pick next year based on having the worst record in MLB, has signed its remaining top-10 picks.

Deluzio, a third-rounder and the No. 80 pick overall, is said by people familiar with the situation to now be "leaning toward'' attending Florida State University even after the Marlins are believed to have offered him at least the $680,000 slot money and earlier comments from him expressed excitement over starting a pro career. "I feel this is the right decision for me to get ready and start the grind. It definitely caught me off guard. I'm ready to go, and I'll go with it,'' Deluzio was quoted as saying to the media about signing a pro deal June 10, four days after he was selected.