Catcher Yadier Molina left Wednesday night's game against the Cubs in the fifth inning due to a left thigh bruise that he sustained in a collision at the plate with Cubs pitcher Ted Lilly. Molina said he hopes to be out for only a couple of days.
"He's got a severe bruise in his thigh," manager Tony La Russa said. "We're day-to-day with him. He got kneed. The longer he was in there, the more it started hurting."
With Lilly on third base and one out in the second inning, Derrek Lee hit a ball to Cardinals shortstop Cesar Izturis. Lilly broke for home, and Izturis threw home. The throw beat Lilly to the plate, so Lilly attempted to bowl Molina over.
Molina held onto the ball, but was clearly shaken up on the play and was tended to before play resumed. He remained in the game, even taking at-bats in the bottoms of the second and fourth frames, before being pulled for the top of the fifth. Jason LaRue took his place and will likely be the primary catcher in Molina's absence.
"I tried to play, but every time I squatted, it hurt more and more," Molina said. "So I decided to turn it down. I don't want to play at 75 percent. I want to do 100 percent. I was thinking, 'Shut it down,' so I did."
Molina is the second Cardinal in as many nights to leave a game early due to injury. Troy Glaus aggravated a right shoulder strain in Tuesday night's win over Chicago. Other Cardinals currently limited by injuries include Chris Carpenter, Rick Ankiel and Brian Barton.
Matthew Leach is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.