MONDAY SPORTS: Former Tiger Gray dies; Gamecocks, Tigers, ranked high; Braves way ahead in NL East

*Former Clemson basketball player Devin Gray died of a heart attack Saturday in Atlanta, GA. The native of Baltimore, MD played at Clemson from 1991-94 and was just 41-years-old. According to the Baltimore Sun, Gray had played basketball earlier in the day at a facility in Atlanta. GA. Later that afternoon he complained of chest pains and was taken to an area hospital. He had just recently moved to Atlanta to start a new job.

*South Carolina and Clemson will start the football season in the top ten in the Associated Press poll. The Gamecocks came in a number six in the ranking. Clemson wasn’t far behind at number eight. Georgia, the team Clemson opens against and USC plays in week two is fifth in the poll. Alabama was the top team in the poll. Ohio State was second and Oregon was third. The first AP poll was released Saturday morning. A couple of weeks ago USC was 7th and Clemson was 8th in the USA Today Coaches poll. USC opens the season August 29th at home against unranked North Carolina. Clemson and Georgia play August 31st in Death Valley.

*Julio Teheran made it through six scoreless innings and a tired Atlanta bullpen held on as the Braves beat the Washington Nationals 2-1 on Sunday. The Braves stretch their lead in the NL East to 15.5 games.

*The drama surrounding Alex Rodriguez continued Sunday night when the New York Yankees third baseman was hit by a pitch, leading Yankees manager Joe Girardi to get ejected, but then got a home run in New York’s 9-6 win over the Boston Red Sox. His first time up, Rodriguez, who is contesting a 211-game suspension by Major League Baseball in the Biogenesis performance-enhancing drugs case, was hit by the fourth pitch thrown after the first pitch landed behind him after going between his knees and the next two were also close. Meanwhile, off the field, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Sunday that Rodriguez should, quote, “put up or shut up,” after the player’s attorney claimed the day before that the Yankees withheld information from A-Rod during the playoffs last year that his hip was injured. Rodriguez’s camp said they planned to file a formal grievance over the charge.