The Angels have had two strong starters since Aug. 20, when Ryan beat Milwaukee 6-1 for his most satisfying win in 2� months. He allowed three hits, struck out nine and retired 19 straight over one stretch of his 7?-inning stint.
In the Shea Stadium victory on Aug. 24 he struck out eight in six innings. Last weekend Manager Dick Williams elected to rest him rather than subject his arm to more stress in rainy Detroit.
"I've learned a lot this season," says Ryan. "I've learned I can win without the good stuff and can cope with situations as they come up. I realize I won't always have the ability I once had, so I'll be working harder than ever to get into shape for spring training."
It somehow seems fitting that Nolan Ryan should complete his peril-fraught season in a TV soap opera. He is making a cameo appearance this week in Ryan's Hope. When first seen he is in a hospital, having visited a boys-camp outing, been drawn into a basketball game and injured his knee. The soap opera ends happily. The season isn't over.