Molina and Oscar Taveras placed consecutive two-out RBI doubles just out of right fielder Giancarlo Stanton's reach in a three-run sixth inning in a 3-2 victory over the Miami Marlins on Friday night.
"Both were hit pretty well, too. Not like they were pop-ups that were dropped," manager Mike Matheny said. "We've seen Yaddy hit a lot of balls that way that don't find the grass and he finally found one that did."
Lance Lynn bounced back from his worst start of the season with 6 2/3 scoreless innings and the Cardinals won their third straight.
Stanton, who entered with an NL-leading 21 homers and 61 RBIs, was 0 for 4. He punched the padded wall in frustration after his glove failed him for the second time, and Marlins starter Nathan Eovaldi (5-4) also showed frustration when he slammed his glove into the dugout on his way off the field after the inning.
Manager Mike Redmond didn't blame Stanton, who left without speaking to reporters. He thought Molina's drive ticked off the bottom of Stanton's glove.
"I thought he had a good bead on it, he just came up a little short," Stanton said. "He ran a long ways for both of those balls."
The first four Marlins reached safely in the ninth before Trevor Rosenthal earned his 26th save in 29 chances. Christian Yelich's RBI single eluded a sliding Matt Holliday in left and Stanton walked with the bases loaded before Casey McGehee grounded into a game-ending double play.
Earlier in the inning, Matheny unsuccessfully appealed that the Marlins' Donovan Solano had passed teammate Reed Johnson tagging up at second when he had thought Holliday had made the catch. He wasn't trying to buy time for his closer.
"We get an out there, it's a great trade for a delay," Matheny said. "We haven't had many of those -- hardly any -- go our way."
Matt Carpenter doubled off the top of the wall in center field to open the sixth, missing a home run by inches and circling his fingers as he arrived at second base. The Cardinals lost a crew chief appeal that lasted just 53 seconds, but Carpenter scored the go-ahead run on a wild pitch and Molina and Oscar Taveras drove in a run apiece.
Lynn (9-6) allowed five hits with six strikeouts and three walks. He is 4-4 on the road and in his previous outing lasted two innings and surrendered a season-worst seven runs, six earned, while also troubled by a blister on the middle finger of his pitching hand in a loss to the Dodgers.
Lynn said the problem had been losing the callous on the finger, not the blister. In any case, he had no finger issues.
"It's just part of pitching," Lynn said. "When it was all said and done, I had a really good sinker. When I have that, we're going to use it."
Eovaldi allowed two singles and two walks in the first five innings. He gave up three runs on four hits in the sixth.
Attendance of 46,131 to begin a seven-game home stand was the Cardinals' 24th sellout in 41 games.
Matheny, who will guide the NL in the All-Star game next week, said he's "pretty close" to finalizing his roster choices. He is aboard with the game deciding home-field advantage in the World Series. "I like it meaning something," Matheny said. "It's a great idea." ... Redmond planned to chat with Matheny and tout Stanton's All-Star credentials. "I'd love to see him DH," Redmond said. "I don't know how you don't have his bat in the lineup, right?" ... Cardinals OF Allen Craig did not start for the second straight day. Matheny said he's trying to be creative with a crowded outfield and Taveras, a rookie, getting regular playing time. Craig was 6 for 34 on the trip and is likely to start Saturday against Marlins LHP Andrew Heaney (0-3, 5.29) with RHP Shelby Miller (7-7, 4.10) starting for St. Louis. Miller is 6-3 with a 1.78 ERA against the NL East. .. McGehee is batting .348 (16 for 46) during an 11-game hitting streak. He's hit in 18 straight on the road.