José Canseco Capas, Jr. (born July 2, 1964) was a Major League Baseball player. He was born in Havana, Cuba, and is the twin brother of another major league baseball player, Ossie Canseco. His family left Cuba when he and his brother were infants, and he grew up in Miami.
Canseco did not attend college on a baseball scholarship. He was signed by the Oakland Athletics and began playing in 1986, causing a splash immediately. He was named American League Rookie of the Year after connecting 33 home runs that year. In 1987, he was joined in the team by Mark McGwire, who hit 49 home runs that year, and they became known as the "Bash Brothers." In 1988, Canseco became the first player in Major League Baseball's history to hit at least 40 homers and steal at least 40 bases in the same year. That year, he helped the Athletics to the World Series but they lost to the Los Angeles Dodgers in five games. Canseco was unanimously named the American League Most Valuable Player in 1988.
In 1989, Canseco was injured most of the year, but he still managed to hit 17 homers as the Athletics won their first World Series since 1974, when they beat the San Francisco Giants in four games. The '89 Series was interrupted before game 3 by a major earthquake in the Bay Area.
Canseco came back in full strength in 1990, hitting 44 homers and taking the A's to the World Series once again. But this time it was his team that got swept, losing to the Cincinnati Reds in four games.
Canseco continued to be productive, but after 1990 his career hit a plateau, never accomplishing what many expected he was capable of in the face of frequent injury problems and controversy. In 1992, he was traded to the Texas Rangers, the first of many junkets around the league.
In 1993, Canseco received unwanted attention when, during a game against the Cleveland Indians, Carlos Martinez hit a fly ball that Canseco lost in the lights. The ball hit him in the head, jumped off the wall and out of the baseball field and was declared a home run. That same season, Canseco suffered further indignity when he asked to pitch during a runaway loss; he injured his arm, underwent Tommy John surgery, and was lost for the remainder of the season.
Canseco ran into trouble in his personal life various times. In 1989, his wife accused him of domestic violence after he allegedly ran his car into hers. That was the beginning of a series of accusations and run-ins with the law while Canseco was in the public spotlight.
Canseco retired in May 2002 after a string of injury-filled seasons. His 462 career home runs rank him 26th on the career list.
After years of denial, Canseco admitted to using anabolic steroids, which many people had suspected for years. When he made his admission he claimed that most major league baseball players also took steroids, a claim denied by many players. He tried to back up that claim with a 2005 book.
Canseco made a brief comeback attempt in 2004, but was not offered a spot with the Los Angeles Dodgers after showing up to training camp wearing jeans and a shirt.
- Complete statistics career at Baseball Reference (http://www.baseball-reference.com/c/cansejo01.shtml)
- Canseconet Jose Canseco fan site (http://www.canseconet.com/)