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Austin Barnes celebrates with his Dodgers teammates after hitting a home run in the sixth inning Friday night in Game 3 of the World Series against the Tampa Bay Rays in Arlington, Texas. The Dodgers won, 6-2, to take a 2-1 series lead. Tony Gutierrez/Associated Press

ARLINGTON, Texas — Walker Buehler pitched in the World Series like the Los Angeles Dodgers’ aces of old.

Think Sandy Koufax, Fernando Valenzuela and Orel Hershiser, all leaders of title runs.

Now Buehler has the Dodgers two wins from the championship that has eluded them since 1988.

Buehler struck out 10 over six innings in a pulsating performance, and Los Angeles beat the Tampa Bay Rays 6-2 on Friday night for a 2-1 World Series lead.

“Being a big-game pitcher and really succeeding on this stage, there’s only a few guys currently and throughout history,” Dodgers Manager Dave Roberts said. “He’s in some really elite company,”

Justin Turner homered in the first inning against a surprisingly hittable Charlie Morton, who was chased in the fifth inning.

Austin Barnes, the Dodgers’ No. 9 hitter and catcher, added a sixth-inning homer against John Curtiss. He became just the second player to drive in runs with both a homer and a sacrifice bunt in the same Series game.

He’ll probably remember the home run most.

‘It’s a cool little stat, but it’s not easy to barrel the ball up against all these really good pitchers,” Barnes said.

Los Angeles overwhelmed Tampa Bay in all phases, leaving the Rays’ scuffling offense with a .206 batting average and 11 runs in the Series. The Rays’ .133 average (6 for 45) against Clayton Kershaw, Tony Gonsolin and Buehler is the lowest through three Series games against a team’s starters since the Boston Red Sox held the Philadelphia Phillies to .129 in 1915, according to STATS.

Julio Urías, a hard-throwing Mexican left-hander in a Dodgers lineage dating to Valenzuela, starts Game 4 on Saturday night, while the Rays start Ryan Yarbrough, who relieved in the first game.

Thirty-eight of 59 previous teams that won Game 3 for a 2-1 lead went on to take the title.

Steely-eyed like Hershiser, who won MVP honors of the 1988 Series, Buehler has supplanted Kershaw as the Dodgers’ ace. He showed no indisposition from the blister on his right index finger that has bothered him.

He has allowed one run in 13 Series innings that include seven scoreless in Game 3 against Boston two years ago. He improved to 2-0 with a 1.80 ERA in four postseason starts, including a win over Atlanta in Game 6 of the NL Championship Series last weekend.

“I’ve taken the failures that I’ve had and tried to learn from them a little bit,” Buehler said.

The 26-year-old right-hander started 15 of 21 batters with strikes and threw strikes on 67 of 93 pitches. Buehler didn’t allow a hit until Manuel Margot’s one-out double in the fifth. Willy Adames then drove in Margot with another double.

Tampa Bay’s only other hit off him was Austin Meadows’ leadoff single in the sixth.

“You can see the fastball just pop through the zone,” Rays Manager Kevin Cash said. “Other than a few breaking balls here or there, it was very much a there it is, hit it approach. You totally understand and appreciate why he’s so talented.”

Rays batters were kept off balance by his mix of 59 four-seam fastballs, 14 knuckle-curves, 12 sliders and eight cut fastballs. He became the first pitcher in the Series with 10 or more strikeouts in six or fewer innings.

“That might have been the best I’ve ever seen him,” Barnes said.

Blake Treinen and Brusdar Graterol followed with a perfect inning apiece. Kenley Jansen finished the four-hitter, giving up Randy Arozarena’s record-tying eighth homer this postseason.

Morton, a right-hander who turns 37 on Nov. 12, had entered unbeaten in seven straight postseason decisions, one shy of Orlando Hernandez’s record, including wins in five consecutive starts. But he took the loss, allowing five runs and seven hits in 4 1/3 innings – more than the four runs total he gave up in his previous five postseason starts combined.

No Rays starter has finished the fifth inning in their last five Series starts since Matt Garza in Game 3 against Philadelphia in 2008. Tampa Bay repeated its pattern of a dozen years ago, losing the opener, winning the next game and dropping the third.

“I wasn’t particularly sharp,” Morton said. “I felt like I was able to get two strikes pretty quickly with a lot of guys and just not able to put them away.”

Turner put the Dodgers ahead on Morton’s 14th pitch, turning on a high 94.8 mph fastball with a 1-2 count and driving the ball 397 feet over the left-field wall. Turner’s home run was the 11th of his postseason career over 69 games, tying the team record set by Duke Snider over 36 games with the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers from 1954-59.

Los Angeles extended the lead to 3-0 in the third when Morton hit Corey Seager on a toe with a pitch, Turner doubled, and Max Muncy drove a cutter into center for a two-run single.

After singles by Cody Bellinger and Joc Pederson, Barnes drove in a run with his safety squeeze to first baseman Ji-Man Choi – the first RBI bunt in the Series since the Rays’ Jason Barlett in Game 2 in 2008, and the first since for the Dodgers since Billy Cox in 1953.

Mookie Betts followed with a two-out RBI single that made it 5-0, and Barnes homered in the sixth. Five of the Dodgers’ first six runs scored with two outs, raising their total to nine of 18 in the Series and 50 of 87 in the postseason.

“Obviously there’s two outs, but you can still build an inning not giving away at-bats,” Betts said. “That’s how you win a World Series.”

GOING DEEP

Arozarena tied Barry Bonds (2002), Carlos Beltrán (2004) and Nelson Cruz (2011) for homers in a postseason and set the rookie record for hits with 23, one more than Derek Jeter in 1996.

SWIPING

Betts stole two bases, giving him three in the Series and six this postseason.

OPEN AND SHUT

The roof at $1.2 billion Globe Field was closed for the first time this postseason after the temperature dropped to 53 degrees at game time, down from 82 for the opener and 81 for Game 2. It was 74 inside for the limited crowd of 11,417.

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