* The Cleveland Indians have gone 15-12 in September and have a chance to finish fewer than 11 games out of first place for the first full season since 1959. They finished five games out during both halves of the strike-interrupted season of 1981, and seven games out overall that season.
* Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Andy Van Slyke wants a piece o Doug Drabek's Cy Young Award incentive bonus. Van Slyke has played in 22 of Drabek's starts this year, hitting .405 with 27 RBI.
* Philadelphia Phillies rookie Pat Combs, who originally joined th club when rosters expanded last September, has an 8-0 record in games played from Sept. 1 through the end of the season. His record the rest of the time is 6-9.
* Wade Boggs' bid for an eighth consecutive 200-hit season apparently ended in bed. He blamed a recent hip strain on a bad hotel bed in Chicago and promptly slipped into a 1-for-20 slump.
* Seattle Mariners left-hander Matt Young has 17 losses, but that might not be a true indication of how well he has pitched. In six of those losses, his ERA went down.
* The Chicago Cubs have used 15 different starting pitchers thi year, which illustrates what a pitching reversal the club suffered after last year's National League East championship. The Cubs have only one pitcher -- Greg Maddux -- who has not missed a turn in the rotation this year.
and the downright ridiculous
* Red Sox manager Joe Morgan received a horseshoe in the mail from a fan in Maine who apparently felt the team's luck was about to run out. Morgan hung it in his office and the Red Sox promptly won three straight to retake first place in the American League East.
* How poorly have the New York Mets fared against left-hande pitching lately? Consider the reaction of manager Bud Harrelson when he was informed that the Pirates had scheduled three straight left-handed starters for the final series of the regular season. Harrelson didn't say a word. He just made the sign of the cross.
* Phillies pitcher Terry Mulholland has a 2.12 ERA in the nin starts that date back through his no-hitter against the San Francisco Giants in August, but his record in those starts is only 2-4.