Checking the Signs: All-Star Edition

Checking the Signs: All-Star Edition

Mercury, the planet of communication, will be retrograde July 4-28. The All-Star Game will be played during this challenging cycle, so it will be interesting to see if there are any delays, last minute changes, and hopefully, no ties!

Mercury retrograde, slowly seeping into mass consciousness, is a planetary cycle that occurs three times a year for three weeks. Mercury rules thinking, information, all means of communication, commerce, and transportation. Mercury retrograde can give rise to misunderstandings, disrupted or delayed communications in regards to negotiations and trade, as well as glitches and breakdowns with phones, computers, cars, buses, and trains. It won't be unusual for team planes and buses to be delayed during this planetary hotspot.

A special note to GM's concerning the July 30 trade deadline: Be careful when signing on the dotted line with the Mercury retrograde, as due diligence takes on new dimensions! Trades ought not be cause for regret.

Like any other cosmic aspect, there is a positive side. Mercury retrograde provides a time to review, reflect, meditate, clean our spiritual cupboards, and tap into intuition. The key is being able to roll with the punches.

This is sun sign Cancer time of year -- the days are long and backyard barbecues, renovations, and other home-based events are the focus of many.

Seven- time All Star shortstop Derek Jeter of the New York Yankees personifies the tenacious sun sign Cancer (born June 26, 1974 in Pequannock, NJ). Over the last 10 seasons (1996-2005) he led the Major Leagues with 1,924 hits and ranks second with 1,154 runs. Water sign Cancers value and prize their deep emotional attachments and treasured memories and feelings. Derek initiated the Turn 2 Foundation to motivate youth to "turn to" a healthy lifestyle. Cancers are leaders, and when convinced, there's no disputing their chosen path. Nurturing Cancer is a home-loving sign, where food and family prevail. Fellow Yankee Cancerian kindred spirits include Manager Joe Torre, owner George Steinbrenner and GM Brian Cashman.

Aries (March 21-April 19): With Mercury retrograde, it's possible you may hear from an old friend or relative who's been out of the picture. Mars moves into Virgo on the 22nd-the perfect time to step up your workout regimen. You have lots of energy available, so be sure to channel it in upbeat, productive ways.

First-time All-Star Minnesota Twins catcher Joe Mauer's red-hot batting average is very Aries!

Taurus (April 20-May 20): Although important plans are in the works, you may have to wait a few months to implement them. Luckily, Taurus is a patient soul. In the meantime, enduring Taurus will have a great many tasks at home to handle. With the Sun in Leo after the 22nd, home improvement rules.

Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Brandon Webb is a determined Taurus named to his first All-Star Game.

Gemini (May 21-June 20): Communications hit a snag this month, as your loquacious ruler Mercury retrogrades. Time is better spent tying up loose ends and finishing projects before embarking on something new. Double check all details, don't mistake activity for accomplishment, and relish your down time.

Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Brad Penny is a versatile Gemini, also a first-time All-Star.

Cancer (June 21-July 22): Happy Birthday July Crabs! It's the beginning of a fresh new cycle for you. However, this year you have to deal with maddening Mercury retrograde in your sign. You usually keep to yourself, but with Mars in the mix you're unusually outspoken. People are looking at you with new respect.

Perennial All-Star and loyal Cancer shortstop Derek Jeter of the New York Yankees will appear in his seventh game.

Leo (July 23-Aug 22): New Moon on the 24th in your dramatic sign heralds new beginnings. Use your charm and charisma to ask the universe for what you truly desire. Mercury retrograde may delay, but it rarely denies. This is a good month to take a retreat to replenish energies.

Ten-time All Star third baseman Alex Rodriguez is a commanding Leo.

Virgo (Aug 23-Sept 22): Mars moves into your analytical sign on the 22nd, jump-starting a vigorous cycle. It's a time when much energy is focused on yourself. Since much of your time and attention is usually given to others, it's healthy for you to be more selfish this month. Double-check all details, which you habitually do anyway!

Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder and two-time All-Star Jason Bay is an exacting Virgo.

Libra (Sept 23-Oct 23): You have plenty of opportunities in your career sector this month. Put your best foot forward. Still, with Mercury retrograde, disorganization results in communication problems in business all month long. You'll do yourself a world of good if you take a few days off.

Balanced Libran outfielder Ichiro Suzuki of the Seattle Mariners is a six-time All-Star.

Scorpio (Oct 24-Nov 21): During the first three weeks of the month, your focus is entirely on career and work. As you may be known for having a sharp tongue, Mercury retrograde requires you to be diplomatic in the way you talk to bosses, colleagues, and clients. When the path clears in additional areas, your love life opens up.

Enigmatic Scorpio New York Mets pitcher Pedro Martinez is an eight-time All-Star.

Sagittarius (Nov 22-Dec 21): Enjoy the good vibes! At times your energies are scattered, but now with Mars in Virgo in your 10th house, you will work unceasingly toward an important goal. Be careful that you don't ignore finances at this time, since Mercury retrograde could signal a time when mistakes are the norm.

NL Player of the Month and first-time All-Star New York Mets third baseman David Wright is one enthusiastic Sagittarius!

Capricorn (Dec 22-January 19): Full Moon in your ambitious sign on the 10th could represent a chance to leave behind a problem or worry that has been vexing your spirit. As a workaholic, there are times when you have to be convinced to take a vacation, but with Mars in your 9th house of travel, it's a good time to take a trip, as long as you allow for added time.

St. Louis Cardinals first baseman Albert Pujols, goal-oriented Capricorn, was the leading vote-getter among fans, chosen on more than 3.4 million ballots for his third All-Star game.

Aquarius (January 20-February 18): Things cautiously move forward with Jupiter going direct in your career house on the 6th. From now through late November, you can expect many good things to manifest in your professional life, if you're willing to take advantage of them. Relationships move onto the back burner.

First-time All-Star Aquarius pitcher Scott Kazmir of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays proudly represents the unique Aquarius contingent along with RBI machine first baseman Lance Berkman of the Houston Astros, a four-time All-Star.

Pisces (Feb 19-March 20): Romance has its complications this month, with Mercury retrograde in Cancer. Venus in Cancer mitigates some of the misunderstandings, especially if you depend on non-verbal cues. Bad eating habits, brought on by stress and overwork, could come back to haunt you during the retrograde this month.

Free-spirited musician and pitcher Bronson Arroyo of the Cincinnati Reds should be singing a happy tune at his first All-Star Game.

Andrea Mallis, Sports Astrologer, is a devoted baseball fan and writer. Andrea has appeared on ESPN SportsCenter, ESPN News, ESPN2 Cold Pizza, Baseball Tonight and ESPN All Night Radio. She's written for major league baseball magazines, ESPN.com Page 2, mlb.com, as well as appearing on local TV and radio shows. Recently featured in "FantasyLand," a book on fantasy baseball, for more information please visit www.virgoinservice.com. Feel free to check out Andrea's sports astrology blog This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.