The Cardinals qualified for their fourth World Series in the last 10 seasons tonight two more than any other club pending the resolution of the Boston-Detroit series. And they improbably beat Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw for the fourth time in four meetings this season.

This time it was a four-run third inning and a five-run fifth that did in Kershaw and the Dodgers as the Cardinals captured their 19th National League pennant with a convincing 9-0 victory over the Dodgers in Game 6 of the league championship series before a red-bedecked crowd of 46899 at Busch Stadium.

The Cardinals captured the best-of-seven series four games to two behind remarkable rookie Michael Wacha who was a college pitcher in 2012 but named the Most Valuable Player of the NLCS in 2013.

Wacha the Cardinals’ top draft pick last year handcuffed the Dodgers for the second time in the series holding them to two hits in seven innings as he blanked them into the seventh in a 1-0 Game 2 win over Kershaw.

The Cardinals will be off until next Wednesday when they will open the World Series at either Boston or Detroit two of their opponents in those World Series in the last 10 seasons. They lost to the Red Sox in four games in 2004 but beat the Tigers in five games in 2006. They are 2-1 against both in their World Series histories.

Shane Robinson making his first playoff start singled in two runs in the third when Kershaw labored through 48 pitches. Yadier Molina singled in one run in the inning and so did Carlos Beltran who will play in his first World Series after 2064 regular-season games and 45 postseason contests. Three times Beltran’s teams (Houston New York and the Cardinals) had lost in the seventh game of the National League championship series. He clearly didn’t want this series to get that far.

The four-run spurt in the third by the Cardinals seemed to extract what little life the Dodgers had left and there were no "Mickey Mouse" theatrics by the California club other than a ridiculous 12-minute standoff before the game by the Dodgers’ Scott Van Slyke and the Cardinals’ Joe Kelly outside their respective dugouts.

The five-run fifth in which the aggressively running Cardinals had the bumbling Dodgers throwing to nearly every base but the right one was the crusher for Los Angeles.

Beltran had his third hit of the game a run-scoring single while Matt Adams knocked in one with a double Matt Carpenter one with a sacrifice fly and two more scored on a fielder’s choice and a wild pitch.

The seven runs charged to Kershaw represented the most earned runs he had allowed since he gave up eight in a game here a year on July 24 2012.

The Cardinals are 11-7 in their first 18 World Series.

Wacha allows two hits through seven

Cardinals rookie Michael Wacha turning in a postseason that very few pitchers ever have achieved was lifted for a pinch hitter after seven brilliant innings tonight in Game 6 of the National League championship series.

Wacha held the Los Angeles Dodgers to two hits and walked one running his postseason totals for three games to 21 innings pitched with just eight hits and one run allowed.

This follows his regular-season windup of 8 2/3 innings of one-hit ball against Washington.

Carlos Martinez relieved in the eighth with Trevor Rosenthal almost certain to pitch the ninth as the Cardinals held their 9-0 over the Dodgers.