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3076.1     URL:      November 14, 2007

Cosmic Baseball

Game Report

In recognition of the planet Mars' putative retrograde motion between November 15, 2007 and January 30, 2008, a cosmic baseball game between two cosmic baseball teams associated with the planet was played.

The Explorers and the Kinotypes are two currently deactivated cosmic baseball teams with Mars in their themes. The Explorers is a cosmic team of human built spacecraft that has been sent to the 4th rock from the Sun. The Kinotypes roster consists of cinematic representations of things Martian...movies, television shows, videos, etc.



Mars in the Sky

The Planet Mars is relatively easy to see in the sky. Its red color distinguishes it from the other celestial objects.

1997 Photograph of Mars from the Viking Orbiter

As much as its blood red color in the sky it was the motion of the planet Mars that caught the attention of the human souls living on Earth. Mars wanders, unlike Mercury and Venus, further from the Sun than Earth. The characteristics of its wanderings were curious and unsettling.

It will be argued that many of the greatest mythical themes reflect ancient man's obsession with the red planet. Indeed, we will attempt to show that Mars' prominence in ancient consciousness is directly attributable to the peculiar behavior of the red planet... (

For thousands of years it was only a blood-red dot among the starry host---a nameless denizen of the trackless night. Sometimes, when it veered closer to the Earth and shone like a burning coal in the darkness, it must have roused terror among primitive sky watchers, only to fade away into relative obscurity and be forgotten once more. By the time the Egyptians settled their civilization along the banks of the Nile, it had become familiar enough to receive a name---Har décher, the Red One. The Babylonians referred to it as Nergal, the Star of Death, and the Greeks too associated it with warfare and bloodshed---it was the Fiery One, or the war god, Ares---one and the same with the Roman god Mars. (from Chapter 1, "The Motions of Mars", The Planet Mars: A History of Observation and Discovery by William Sheehan. University of Arizona Press: 1996)

Mars and Philosophy

When the ancient Athenian philosopher Aristotle (384-322 BCE) looked up at the sky (without a yet-to-be-invented telescope), he saw that the Moon appeared to pass in FRONT of Mars. Aristotle, the great giver of the Metaphysics among other works, reasoned that if the Moon appears in front of Mars, than Mars must be further away from Athens than the Moon. A reasonable if/then if ever there was one.

Before Mr. Immanuel Kant (1724-1804), late of Konigsberg, left the field of speculative physics for metaphysics he composed an interesting essay entitled, Universal Natural History and Theory of Heaven (1755). Part Three, described by Kant,
...contains in it an attempt, based on natural analogies, at a comparison between the inhabitants of different planets...

It may appear that in this sort of subject the freedom to be poetical has no real limits, that in judging the make-up of those who live in distant worlds we could allow unbridled fantasy much more freely than a painter in an illustration of the flora and fauna of discovered countries, and that these very ideas could not be proved right or wrong. Nevertheless, we must admit that the distances of the celestial bodies from the sun involve certain relationships which bring with them a vital influence on the different characteristics of the thinking beings found on these very bodies. Their way of working and suffering is associated with the composition of the material to which they are bound and depends upon the quantity of impressions which the world arouses in them, according to the relationship of their living environment with the centre of gravitational power and heat. (Kant, Universal Natural History and Theory of Heaven, Translated by Ian C. Johnston)

Thirty years before Kant theorized about the heavens, Johannes Kepler aided by the inspiring work of Tycho Brahe had used the movement of the planet Mars to develop his famous and important "Three Laws of Planetary Motion." Astronomer Kepler invokes the already well-entrenched military metaphors associated with Mars in his book's dedication to the manic-depressive Emperor Rudolph II (1552-1612).

I bring to Your Majesty a noble prisoner whom I have captured in the difficult and wearisome war entered upon under Your auspices. . .Hitherto, no one had more completely got the better of human inventions; in vain did astronomers prepare everything for the battle; in vain did they draw upon all their resources and put all their troops in the field. Mars, making game of their efforts, destroyed their machines and ruined their experiments. . .For my part, I must, above all, praise the activity and devotion of the valiant captain Tycho Brahe, who, [...] every night throughout twenty successive years studied almost without respite all the habits of the enemy...The observations, which he bequeathed to me, have greatly helped to banish the vague and indefinite fear that one experiences when first confronted by an unknown enemy. (Kepler, Astronomia Nova, Epistola Dedicatoria in Gesammelte Werke, vol. 3, p. 8; Koyré, The Astronomical Revolution, pp. 277--278)

Mars Art
1787 (Schroeter)

Is Seeing Believing?

Telescope technology began to evolve in the early 17th century. History credits the Dutch spectacle maker Hans Lippershey (c.1570-c.1619) with assembling the first telescope. By 1610 Galileo was using a telescope to look at Mars which was, at the time, nearer to the Sun than to Earth. Galileo a confirmed Copernican understood as Copernicus had demonstrated that Mars must move around the Sun outside the orbit of Earth.

Mars Art, 1879 (Schiaparelli)
Using the telescope technology of 1636 Italian attorney and "keen amateur astronomer" Francesco Fontana made a drawing of the planet Mars. He drew an area that looked like a small "black pill" that appeared to be on the planet and some mistook it for an actual place on the planet. Fontana's drawing of the planet Venus also included a similar spot. Some historians believe "there can be no doubt that the spot was the result of an optical defect in his telescope."

Mars Art, 1890 (Keeler)
Philosopher Kant absorbed the contemporary knowledge about Mars and the other celestial objects and could in his aforementioned 1755 treatise comfortably discuss the possibility of life on other planets. Mars was becoming a likely candidate for life. In little more than one hundred years after Kant's essay, the belief that Mars was inhabited would become widespread. (See Michael Hanlon, The Real Mars. Carroll & Graf: New York, 2004; page 29)

Mars Art, 1917 (Lowell)
Despite philosophy's interest in Mars, astronomers and Mars art seems to have receded somewhat until 1783 when William Herschel's drawings of the planet ushered in a new Martian studies epoch. Inspired by Herschel the German lawyer Johann Hieronymus Schroeter became the next amateur astronomer artist to contribute to the growing research about the planet. Coincidentally, this Mars researcher was beset by several Mars-like calamities during his life. For example, the Napoleonic Wars raged in his time and space and his home was temporarily taken over by the French. Eventually the French would set fire to Schroeter's home town and while his homemade astronomical observatory escaped the flames it was plundered by the French warriors. Schroeter's work remained unknown until 1873 and unpublished until 1881 when Henricus Gerardus van de Sande Bakhuyzen, director of the Leyden Observatory, had the opportunity to edit and print Schroeter's work on Mars.

With the work of Herschel and Schroeter, the first phase of the physical study of Mars was under way. Its rotation period, axial inclination, seasons, polar caps, and atmosphere were now reasonably well known, and a tentative start had been made on the Martian geography...the planet had acquired the distinction of being by all odds the most Earthlike... (William Sheehan, The Planet Mars)

Colorado River, Utah, North America


Game Time 3 hours, 12 minutes
Weather Cloudy, drizzle
Copernicus, Kepler, Schiaparelli
Official Scorer Percival Lowell
Most Cosmic Player
A Trip to Mars



Game Notes
Other Games

Kinotypes Win, 2-0

The strength of fantasy and unrealistic imagination prevailed on the cosmic baseball field as the Kinotypes scored two early runs and kept the Explorers shut down the whole way as A Trip to Mars pitched a three hit shutout.


Barsoomtown Explorers

The 1992 Barsoomtown Explorers are a team of spacecraft designed to explore the planet Mars. The team joined CBA's Outer Space League on August 11, 1992. The Explorers were active for two seasons and deactivated on October 1, 1993. (SOURCE)
Mariner 6
Launch Date: February 24, 1969. A spacecraft that flew by Mars, part of a dual exploration mission with Mariner 7, also launched on the same date.
Mariner 7
Launch Date: February 24, 1969. Like its sister spacecraft, Mariner 6, it was designed to flyby the planet Mars.
Mariner 8
Launch Date: May 9, 1971. Designed to orbit Mars Mariner 8 failed at launch.
Mariner 9
Launch Date: May 30, 1971. A spacecraft designed to orbit Mars. Mariner 9 reached Mars orbit on November 14, 1971.

Mariner 9 is the first Earth-launched spacecraft to orbit another planet.

Phobos 2
Launch Date: July 12, 1988. A spacecraft designed to orbit Mars. Phobos 2 reached Mars orbit on January 29, 1989.
Mars 2
Launch Date: May 19, 1971. A spacecraft designed to orbit Mars. Mars 2 reached Mars orbit on November 27, 1971.
Mariner 3
Launch Date: November 5, 1964. A spacecraft designed to flyby Mars. A post-launch technical failure prevented Mariner 3 from completing its mission.
Mariner 4
Launch Date: November 28, 1964. A spacecraft designed to flyby Mars it was identical to its sister craft Mariner 3.

On July 15, 1965 Mariner 4 transmitted to Earth the first close-up images, in the form of photographs, from another planet.

Viking 1
Launch Date: August 20, 1975. A spacecraft designed, like its sister craft, Viking 2, to orbit Mars and to land an exploratory machine (a Mars "lander") on the planet. Viking 1 arrived at Mars on June 19, 1976. The Viking 1 Lander arrived on the surface of Mars on July 20, 1976.


Martian Kinotypes

The 1997 Martian Kinotypes are a team composed of films, movies, videos, and television shows that have the planet Mars as a central theme. The Kinotypes were created on January 5, 1997 and competed in the CBA for one season before being deactivated on December 15, 1997. (SOURCE)
A Message from Mars
Released: April 11, 1921. A miserly selfish man has a dream in which a Martian teaches him to think of the other fellow first. Based on the play by the American Richard Ganthony which premiered at the Avenue Theatre, London, in 1899. (Source)
The Day Mars Invaded Earth
Released: 1963. Filmed in Beverly Hills this is a tale of Martians irritated by human investigation of their planet.

It concerns a scientist, who has just landed a probe on Mars...he and his wife start seeing doubles of each other, and his daughter's boyfriend dies in a mysterious car accident...The scientist comes to the logical conclusion that these events must have something to with his Mars probe, so he calls up his friend ...They find out that Martians are indeed behind all this... SOURCE

Flight to Mars
Released: November 11,1951 This film tells the story of a journalist and several scientists who fly in a rocket to Mars and discover that environmental issues (the depletion of Corium, a Martian natural resource) has resulted in a Martian plan to conquer Earth.
Martians Go Home
Released: April 20, 1990. A science fiction comedy about a lot of little GREEN Martians summoned to Earth by a song writer.
Devil Girl from Mars
Released: April 27, 1955. Filmed in England this is the story of an erotic looking Martian female sent to Earth to gather human males for breeding purposes on the matriarchal Martian planet.
Mars Needs Women
Released: 1967. Filmed in Texas, the plot is the reverse of Devil Girl from Mars, the team's secondbase fielder.

Five Martians come to Earth looking for young, fertile women to take back home with them. They need the women, because on Mars, a genetic disaster is occurring and it's causing a drastic change in the ratio between male and female births. There's about one hundred males born for every one female birth. The only way to correct this problem is to infuse human DNA into their own gene pool. If their mission is unsuccessful, their whole race will die. (SOURCE)

Mission Mars
Released: July 26, 1968. Filmed in Florida, this is the story of the first manned mission to the planet Mars.

[T]he two astronauts on the dangerous mission, encounter two dead Russian cosmonauts as they approach the planet [Mars]. A third cosmonaut is found on the planet in an apparent state of suspended animation. They manage to revive him but are attacked by a strange force activated by the sun's rays. (SOURCE)

Lobster Man from Mars
Released: 1989. Filmed in and around Los Angeles it tells the story of a Lobster Man sent from Mars to steal air from Earth. This is actually the story of a film made by an enterprising film student, inside the real film,

Mars suffers from an air leakage, and send[s] the dreaded Lobster Man to Earth to steal [Earth's] air. The plot is foiled by a mad scientist, a girl, and an army colonel. (Source)

A Trip to Mars
Released: 1910. A 4-minute film made by Thomas Alva Edison. It is the tale of a scientist who "lands" on the Martian surface.

[This] is the first "movie" with Mars at the center of its storyline. A famous professor discovers that when he mixes two magical powders, he has the power to reverse gravity. As he tests the concoction, some of the powder falls on him, and he is lifted up and flies through the sky until he finally falls on the surface of Mars. (SOURCE)






[Starter] A Trip to Mars
Mariner 6         1B         . . X
*SB:Mariner 6     SB         . X .
Mariner 7         1B         . . X
X@4:Mariner 6     7-2        . . X
Mariner 8         5-4 F      . . X
*SB:Mariner 8     SB         . X .
                  WP         X . .
Mariner 9         6-3        X . .
     Inn. 1:  Kinotypes
[Starter] Viking 1
Message from Mars 3-1        . . .
Day Mars Invaded  1B         . . X
Flight to Mars    5          . . X
Martians Go Home  2B         . X . 1
DevilGirl fr Mars 5-3        . X .
     Inn. 2:  Explorers
Phobos 2         5-3        . . .
Mars 2            6-3        . . .
Mariner 3         8          . . .
     Inn. 2:  Kinotypes
Mars Needs Women  4-3        . . .
Mission Mars      BB         . . X
Lobster Man fr M  1B         . X X
A Trip to Mars    5-3 SAC    X X .
                  WP         X . . 1
Message from Mars 8          X . .
     Inn. 3:  Explorers
Mariner 4         7          . . .
Viking 1          5-3        . . .
Mariner 6         1-3        . . .
     Inn. 3:  Kinotypes
Day Mars Invaded  5-3        . . .
Flight to Mars    6          . . .
Martians Go Home  4          . . .
     Inn. 4:  Explorers
Mariner 7         5-3        . . .
Mariner 8         5          . . .
Mariner 9         7          . . .
     Inn. 4:  Kinotypes
DevilGirl fr Mars 7          . . .
Mars Needs Women  E-5        . . X
Mission Mars      3          . . X
Lobster Man fr M  7          . . X
     Inn. 5:  Explorers
Phobos 2         7          . . .
Mars 2            8          . . .
Mariner 3         1B         . . X
Mariner 4         5-3        . X .
     Inn. 5:  Kinotypes
A Trip to Mars    8          . . .
Message from Mars 3-1        . . .
Day Mars Invaded  4-3        . . .
     Inn. 6:  Explorers
Viking 1          7          . . .
Mariner 6         3UN        . . .
Mariner 7         4          . . .
     Inn. 6:  Kinotypes
Flight to Mars    8          . . .
Martians Go Home  2B         . X .
DevilGirl fr Mars 4-3        X . .
Mars Needs Women  8          X . .
     Inn. 7:  Explorers
Mariner 8         4          . . .
Mariner 9         BB         . . X
*SB:Mariner 9     SB         . X .
Phobos 2         K          . X .
Mars 2            8          . X .
     Inn. 7:  Kinotypes
Mission Mars      1B         . . X
Lobster Man fr M  1B         . X X
A Trip to Mars    2-3 SAC    X X .
Message from Mars 6-3        X X .
Day Mars Invaded  5-3        X X .
     Inn. 8:  Explorers
Mariner 3         6-3        . . .
Mariner 4         6-3        . . .
Viking 1          K          . . .
     Inn. 8:  Kinotypes
Flight to Mars    5-3        . . .
Martians Go Home  6-3        . . .
DevilGirl fr Mars 1B         . . X
Mars Needs Women  5-3        . X .
     Inn. 9:  Explorers
Mariner 6         4-3        . . .
Mariner 7         5-3        . . .
Mariner 8         5-3        . . .

Kinotypes Win, 2-0


Astrological Mars

Astrology is a matter for philosophers --Paul Valery

The technological idolatry of the modern world no longer favors contemplation of the starry skies, which still occupied Kant's solitary evenings. Instead one allows a sort of spell to be cast over one, or a kind of stupor or convulsive agitation, coming from the rebroadcast of a football game or some other television program. (Patrice Guinard: Astrology: The Manifesto 1/4: version 2.3 : 09.2002) .

This astrology manifesto makes some useful points if you are inclined to want or need some intellectualizing about the reality of astrology as an important aspect of human knowledge. As the 16th century morphed into the 17th century the astrologer versus astronomer controversy grew wider but apparently not because of irritable, skeptical stargazers equipped with telescopes. "[T]he opponents of astrology were not astronomers, but rather Puritan ecclesiastics" (See Mary Ellen Bowden, "The Scientific Revolution in Astrology," Yale University (PhD. thesis), 1974, p. 218 )

Mars Retrograde

This particular cosmic game does not directly address the influence, if any, a retrograde Mars has on Earth-based affairs. However, others have addressed the issue.

There may well be some additional Mars-theme cosmic baseball games played during the window of opportunity that Mars appears to move in a reverse direction. Theories could be tested although we should point out that CBA affiliated astrological researchers have a poor batting record when it comes to predicting events based on astrological phenomena. (See the wrong prediction related to this year's Major League Baseball World Series.)

Mars retro in Cancer generates a confused emotional state, placing those most affected at the mercy of the environment. Enthusiasm and inspiration seem muted, as anxieties develop around family issues, urging you to protect all things that make for security, comfort and luxury...Sexual desire is activated and sexual action intensified with passion is often associated with the urge to violence and control. Political leaders should also avoid becoming unduly concerned with homeland security and avoid imposing needless restrictions...there is a tendency for people to get restless, being inclined to change occupations. (

Although this sounds intellectual, what does it really mean? Is astrology even a real science if it depends on the movement of the stars, which by nature, are inclined to change, as any common astronomer can predict? But, more importantly, do these movements or patterns by the planets have any real relevance on the decisions of people, especially those that think this is fascinating? Perhaps, if we just leave our lives to fate, we won't have to think planets have any effect on our lives? (Maya's Really Random Thoughts Blog).

Shouldn't we think, one way or another, that planets do have an effect on our lives?