Red Sox on cusp of another ring

Boston, MA ( - The champagne is on ice in Boston.

The Red Sox solved Michael Wacha early and lead the St. Louis Cardinals 6-0 through six innings in Game 6 of the World Series.

They are nine outs away from clinching the title in Boston for the first time since 1918.

Shane Victorino drew first blood against the previously unhittable Wacha with a three-run double in the third inning, and the Red Sox chased the Cardinals rookie while batting around an inning later.

Victorino, who missed the previous two games with a back injury and was hitless in the Fall Classic coming into the game, added an RBI single in Boston's three-run fourth, which began with a Stephen Drew homer.

All told, Wacha was charged with six runs on five hits and four walks after giving up a combined three runs in his previous four outings this postseason.

The Red Sox won Games 4 and 5 in St. Louis to take a 3-2 series lead and are on the brink of capturing their third World Series in the past 10 seasons.

John Lackey is close to becoming the first pitcher to start and win the clinching game of a World Series for two different teams. The veteran righty has allowed six hits -- all singles -- and stranded all six baserunners.

Both starters survived putting the first two hitters on in the second, but only Lackey continued to wiggle out of jams.

Jacoby Ellsbury started the third with a single, the red-hot David Ortiz was intentionally walked two batters later and Jonny Gomes was plunked on the elbow with two away to load the bases.

Wacha had not allowed a hit with a runner in scoring position in these playoffs up to that point, and Victorino changed that with a line drive off the Green Monster, with Gomes sliding in safely at home just before the tag.

Lackey left a pair on again in the fourth, and Drew took the first pitch of the bottom half into the bullpen in right field for his first home run since Sept. 19. The blast also snapped an 0-for-15 slump for the shortstop.

Lance Lynn, St. Louis' starter in Game 4, relieved Wacha with runners on the corners and two outs and couldn't limit the damage. Mike Napoli singled in Ellsbury and Victorino added another hit with the bases loaded to drive in Ortiz for a 6-0 Red Sox cushion.

Recent history in the Fall Classic is not on the Cardinals' side. Since the 1979 Pittsburgh Pirates won the last two games in Baltimore, six straight teams have failed to overcome 3-2 deficits on the road.