Wanted: three more pitching wins
Pitcher Gaylord Perry is only three wins away from achieving his 300th career victory, a coveted baseball milestone.The Atlanta Braves, who once waited out Hank Aaron's record-setting home run watch, weren't as interested in seeing Perry join the exclusive ''300 club.'' They released him after the 1981 season, apparently convinced the 43-year-old hurler no longer had a future in the majors.
Nobody picked him up until this week, when the Seattle Mariners signed him to a minor league contract. Club president Dan O'Brien said Perry would be training with the Mariners in Tempe, Ariz., ''on a make-good basis. He won't stand in the way of any of our young kids. . . . But based on his background, I feel we have to give him the benefit of the doubt.''
Perry probably couldn't have joined an organization in greater need of pitching help. The Mariners had the game's worst earned-run average last season , a fact partly attributable to their ballpark, the Kingdome, a long-ball haven. Considering that Gaylord pitched respectably last year, winning eight games during a strike-interrupted season, his chances of making the Mariners seem reasonably good.