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08/02/2002 4:11 pm ET 
Houston's Kirk Saarloos voted NL Rookie of the Month for July

Kirk Saarloos of the Houston Astros, who was 3-0 with a 1.77 ERA, was named the National League Rookie of the Month for July.

Saarloos started three games during the month, pitched 20.1 innings and allowed 16 hits while striking out 14 batters. He made his Major League debut on June 18 after being promoted from Double-A Round Rock, where he was 10-1 with a 1.40 ERA. On July 25, in his fifth career start, he threw a six-hit complete game shutout over the Pittsburgh Pirates, winning 8-0. It was Houston's first complete game this year, and the first complete game shutout by an Astros starter since Roy Oswalt last September 9.

Other rookies who received votes were: May winner Austin Kearns of the Reds (.333, 13 RBI); Alex Sanchez of the Brewers (.342, 12 SB); Brad Wilkerson of the Expos (6 HR, 11 RBI); Ramon Vazquez of the Padres (.288, 3 RBI); Mark Prior of the Cubs (2-2, 2.94 ERA); Ryan Jensen of the Giants (3-1, 4.12 ERA); John Patterson of the Diamondbacks (1-0, 0.68 ERA); Mike Crudale of the Cardinals (2-0, 0.69 ERA); and Mike Bacsik of the Mets (2-0, 4.87 ERA).

Saarloos will receive an engraved, specially designed award from the T.R. Miller Company to commemorate his Rookie of the Month performance.



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