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Spokane Indians pregame: Theo McDowell starts against Vancouver in potential clinch game

The Spokane Indians (20-14) host the Vancouver Canadians (11-23) in the finale of a three-game Northwest League series at Avista Stadium on Friday at 6:30 p.m.

The Indians are three games ahead of Everett (17-17) with four games to play in the first half.

It’s been an up and down season for Indians starter Theo McDowell (1-2), who entered play with a 5.68 ERA. He’s 0-2 in his two starts, but he’s allowed only two earned runs with 10 strikeouts over 8 2/3 innings out of the pen.

He’ll face righty Nick Fraze (0-1, 2.92). Fraze hasn’t allowed a run in his last three starts.

Lineup: 1) Strahm-CF; 2) Gardner-RF; 3) Crim-1B; 4) Garcia-DH; 5) Ricumstrict-LF; 6) Ventura-C; 7) Inoa-SS; 8) Hoover-2B; 9) Martinez-3B.

Weather: First pitch – mostly sunny, 75. Final out – clear, 62.

Player to watch: Kellen Strahm. The center fielder has reached base safely in 12 straight games, including a 10-game hitting streak. The 22-year-old from Eugene is hitting .293 with a .379 on-base percentage. He has two homers, 11 RBIs and eight steals in 21 games.

Last night: Blaine Crim blasted a pair of home runs and the Indians beat the Vancouver Canadians 5-1 in the second of a three-game Northwest League series at Avista Stadium on Thursday.

Crim finished 3 for 4 with a two-run homer, a solo shot and an RBI single and is hitting .308 over 22 games this season.

The Indians (20-14) won their fourth in a row and moved three games ahead of Everett in the North Division with four games left in the first half. Tri-City defeated the AquaSox 5-4 in 10 innings.

Starter Justin Slaten, on an innings limit from the parent club, allowed a run on two hits with no walks and three strikeouts in his two innings.

Ex-Indians news: Hans Crouse went five innings and allowed three runs on seven hits and a walk with only one strikeout in Hickory’s 6-3 win over Hagerstown. Miguel Aparicio hit his 10th homer of the season in support.

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