Aster-Obit: Willie Mays

On 18 June 2024, baseball legend Willie Mays passed away, at age 93.  Mays’ pro sports career began in high school with the Birmingham Black Barons, a local Negro League team, but he was picked up by the New York Giants upon graduation, spending 23 seasons in the MLB before retiring in 1973.  Mays was the 1951 Rookie of the Year, and MVP for the 1954 season which brought the Giants their last World Series win before moving to San Francisco.  MVP again in 1965, Mays played in two more World Series, and was chosen as an All-Star 24 times, tying the record set by Stan Musial, exceeded only by Hank Aaron.  Mays spent most of his career with the Giants, but was traded to the NY Mets in 1972; he retired the following year, but continued with the organization as a coach until 1980.

Elected to the baseball Hall of Fame in 1979, the first year of his eligibility, Mays had a lifetime batting average of .301 over more than 3200 hits, with the 9th-highest total number of games played, and won a Golden Glove Award 12 times.  In 2015, Barack Obama presented him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

mays mitt
That’s some mitt, Willie! Mays was known for his catching almost as much as his batting, a phenomenal all-around performer on the field; the Sun is conjoined by asteroid MIT (named for the university, but standing in here for a baseball mitt), squared Mars, ruling athletes and competition

Born 6 May 1931 at 10:30 PM CST in Westfield, Alabama, US (Rodden Rating AA) Willie Mays’ 15 Taurus Sun is squared by Mars at 13 Leo, identified with athletes and competition.  Asteroid May 348 (for Mays) at 25 Sagittarius is sesquiquadrate the Sun, conforming to the typical placements for one’s own PNAs (Personal-Named Asteroids), which commonly connect to the Sun, Moon, Ascendant or Mercury.  There is no exact match for Willie (which was his given name, not a nickname), but several CNAs (Compound-Name Asteroids, consisting of first and last names strung together as one word, which can be separated and used for either) will serve.  These are asteroids Williekoorts 618349, which at 26 Virgo closely squares Mays and is also sesquiquadrate the Sun; Williemccool 51829 at 23 Cancer, opposing the Moon at 18 Capricorn; and Williefowler 12137 at 6 Gemini, sesquiquadrate the Moon and inconjunct the 7 Capricorn Ascendant.  We can also use asteroid Wil 2412 as a cosmic stand-in; at 29 Gemini, it is semisquare the Sun.  Thus, all Willie Mays’ celestial referents fit the pattern.

mays bat
That’s some bat, Willie! (and quite provocatively placed); asteroid Bat’a (an appropriately New York-sounding version of “batter”) conjoins Venus and Uranus, squaring the Ascendant, denoting Mays’ love for the game (Venus), his electric presence (Uranus), and batting (Bat’a) as something that powerfully affected his public image (Ascendant)

Asteroid Williefowler (“foul-er”) might be especially appropriate for Mays.  Although the slugger wasn’t known for fouling out (and many of his fouls were homerun-style hits, just out of bounds), there was one memorable instance in 1965 when the Giants were battling the Houston Astros.  Relief pitcher Claude Raymond sent 13 consecutive fastballs Willie’s way, and he fouled every one of them, until the 14th, which he hit out of the park for a game-tying homerun.

The Giants don’t have any suitable asteroid referents, nor does Yankee Stadium, their home field when Mays was signed to the team in 1950.  But in 1958, the Giants moved to San Francisco’s Candlestick Park, and asteroid Candelo 9010 may be used to approximate this setting where Mays spent most of his career.  Asteroid Candelo at 21 Taurus conjoins the Sun and is trine to both the Moon (home) and Saturn (career) at 18 and 23 Capricorn.  Jupiter rules professional sports teams, and at 15 Cancer, Mays’ natal Jupiter is exactly sextile his Sun, also widely opposed Saturn, prefiguring his MLB career.  Mays finished out his time on the field back in New York with the Mets, and a phonetic match in asteroid Metz 9377 falls at 22 Aries, squared Saturn.  The Metz/Saturn connection also describes his job there as a coach, a Saturnine structural role.

mays mets
Mays finished out his active career with the NY Mets, for whom he also coached after retiring from the field; asteroid Metz (phonetic match for Mets) squared Saturn suggests his supervisory role at the close of his career

When Willie Mays passed on June 18th, asteroid May was at station, indicating a major turning point in his life.  At 2 Pisces, May would turn retrograde eight days later, already at its station degree, accompanied by asteroid Anubis 1912 at 29 Aquarius, named for the Egyptian deity governing funerary rites, and Damocles 5335 at 5 Pisces, noted for the looming threat or peril.  May also squared Jupiter at 5 Gemini, reflecting his celebrity and pro sports affiliations, and asteroid Lachesis 120 at 8 Gemini, named for the mythic Greek Fate who determines the span of life.  May is further trine asteroid Atropos 273 at 4 Cancer, named for the Fate who severs the thread of life at death, with Mercury at 2 Cancer, denoting a newsworthy event.

Atropos also figures in a T-Square, opposed asteroid Williefowler at 6 Capricorn, with asteroid Williekoorts at 1 Aries on the fulcrum, binding two more Mays referents with a symbol of mortality.  As well, asteroids Williemccool and Wil at 26 and 29 Leo square asteroid Rip 7711 (a death indicator as “RIP”) at 22 Scorpio, in a T-Square with Anubis.

mays obama
Barack Obama presents Willie Mays with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2015; asteroid Whitehouse is at station in Mays’ natal chart, turning direct the day before his birth, suggesting an important role to play in his bio; at the awards ceremony on November 24th, asteroid May is in a T-Square, opposed asteroid Barry (for Barack, the name by which he was known in youth) with Jupiter (sports, celebrity) on the fulcrum, with May also sesquiquadrate asteroid Whitehouse, itself trined by asteroid Williemccool

Transits to the birth chart confirm Willie Mays’ passing as cosmically timed.  Transit asteroid Requiem 2254 (named for the funeral mass for the dead) at 11 Taurus conjoins the natal Sun at 15 Taurus, as well as natal Requiem at 5 Taurus (so Mays had recently undergone a “Requiem Return”), and squares natal asteroid Rip at 12 Leo.  Natal Requiem is also squared by a conjunction of Pluto (modern lord of death) and asteroid Osiris 1923 (named for the Egyptian god of the dead) at 1 and 3 Aquarius. 

Transit asteroid Atropos at 4 Cancer conjoins natal asteroid Osiris at 2 Cancer, reiterating the death theme.  Transit Saturn (ancient lord of death) at 19 Pisces exactly squares natal asteroid Lachesis at 19 Gemini; transit Lachesis at 8 Gemini is exactly sesquiquadrate natal Saturn at 23 Cap.  Transit Uranus at 25 Taurus conjoins natal Atropos at 26 Taurus, rounding out the tally of natal death indicators activated by transiting points.

mays plaque
A plaque honors Willie Mays at the Baseball Hall of Fame; when he passed, asteroid May was at station, conjunct asteroid Anubis (funerary rites) and Damocles (doom hanging overhead), squared Jupiter (fame) with asteroid Lachesis (lifespan)

Willie Mays became known as “the Say Hey Kid” because as a Giants rookie, he was unable to remember his teammates’ names and addressed them universally with a shout of “hey!”  But Mays himself was unforgettable, one of the most popular sports figures of the ‘50s and ‘60s, now consistently ranked among the top baseball players of all time.

Alex Miller is a professional writer and astrologer, author of The Black Hole Book, detailing deep space points in astrological interpretation, and the forthcoming Heaven on Earth, a comprehensive study of asteroids, both mythic and personal. Alex is a frequent contributor to “The Mountain Astrologer”, “Daykeeper Journal”, and NCGR’s Journals and “Enews Commentary”; his work has also appeared in “Aspects” magazine, “Dell Horoscope”, “Planetwaves”, “Neptune Café” and “Sasstrology.” He is a past president of Philadelphia Astrological Society, and a former board member for the Philadelphia Chapter of NCGR.

One comment, add yours.


A heartwarming story. Glad he lived a long, full life. His story is especially remarkable given the prejudice he must have faced. The effect of stationing PNAs never fails to amaze me. Thanks for a great read, Alex!

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