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RYAN SAYS HE PLANS TO PITCH IN '93

Nolan Ryan, who has stymied hitters in four decades while compiling seven no-hitters, 314 victories and more than three dozen major league records, said Friday he intended to return for a record 27th season.

"I am looking forward to pitching in 1993," the 45-year-old Ryan said. "I still feel I can help our ballclub win. This was a disappointing season on both a personal and team basis, and I anticipate better results in both cases next season."Ryan is tied at 26 seasons with James McGuire, who pitched from 1884-1912, and Tommy John, who pitched from 1963-89.

Under the contract agreed to between Ryan and the Texas Rangers on July 18, 1991, the team has a $3.6 million option for 1993, of which $900,000 would be deferred with interest. The team has until eight days following the season to exercise the option, and must pay a $200,000 buyout if it doesn't.

Ryan is 5-9 this season with a 3.83 ERA and 152 strikeouts in 150 1-3 innings.