With no outs in the fourth inning, Colorado's Clint Barmes attempted to bunt Adam Wainwright's first pitch for a base hit. Instead, he hit it foul. The ball struck Molina's left knee, caromed into the air and was caught by Wainwright.
Molina immediately hit the ground in pain. Head athletic trainer Barry Weinberg and manager Tony La Russa came out to check on the All-Star and Gold Glover, and at the time, it was determined that Molina could stay in the game. Shortly after, however, Molina came to the mound, La Russa and Weinberg returned to the field and Molina left the game.
"I'm OK," Molina said. "I'm going to be OK. ... It got me pretty good. It's tight right now, but hopefully tomorrow it will be better."
Still, it's very likely that Molina will miss at least a couple of days. The Cardinals are off on Monday, so Tuesday would appear to be the earliest day he could return to the lineup. With the division clinched, there's no reason to push Molina.
Jason LaRue took Molina's place behind the plate and in the No. 6 spot in the batting order. LaRue delivered one of the biggest moments of the night, hitting a tiebreaking solo homer in the seventh inning that ultimately proved to be the game-winning run.
Matthew Leach is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less