"Probably would be a situation where he could skip a start and go but we don't want to be short at this time of pitchers. So we had to put him on the IL," Bochy said.
Gray had imaging following his start against the Los Angeles Angels this week, which revealed a grade 1 strain, manager Bruce Bochy said. Gray did some light throwing following his initial scans, but didn't feel any better.
The Rangers were planning to start Gray on Saturday against Seattle in a game that could have significant playoff implications. Bochy didn't say who will start in his place.
Gray is 9-8 with a 4.12 ERA in 29 starts this season and is second on the team in innings pitched (157 1/3) and strikeouts (142). Gray had made every scheduled start this season until now.
"It really wasn't coming around to the point where we would put him at risk out there pitching and we knew it would be close and would have to make a decision today," Bochy said.
Texas recalled left-hander Jake Lutz from Triple-A Round Rock to fill Gray's roster spot. Latz was optioned to Round Rock this week when Josh Sborz was activated from the injured list. Lutz appeared in two games during his stint between Sept. 16-26 with the Rangers.