Jose Canseco got a job as a TV baseball analyst and this may not end well

Jose Canseco is a character. There’s no doubt about that. If you’ve ever looked at his Twitter account, you know it’s zany and unpredictable. He’s the type of guy to get pulled over with goats in the back of his car or shoot himself in the finger then create a hoax about it falling off during a poker tournament.

So it’s probably not all that surprising someone would want to put him on TV — especially in an era where ex-stars like Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal generate headlines for being goofy on TV and in an era where Alex Rodriguez and Pete Rose can find a bit of redemption as baseball analysts.

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That’s how we arrived here: Jose Canseco has been hired by NBC Sports California as an analyst for Oakland Athletics pre-game and post-game coverage this season. The network announced the hire on Monday. He’ll be joined by another ex-A’s great, Dave Stewart, whose hiring was also announced Monday.

Jose Canseco is bringing some bash-brother style to A's broadcasts. (AP)
Jose Canseco is bringing some bash-brother style to A's broadcasts. (AP)

This is Canseco’s first job as a TV analyst. Before this, the 52-year-old slugged 462 homers in the big leagues, then retired and wrote a tell-all book about steroid use in baseball. To mark the occasion of his hiring, Canseco, the more press release-style version of him anyway, said:

“I’ve got quite a bit of experience. I’ve pretty much been there, done all of that whether it’s on or off the field. I think the fans can expect the truth — an honest opinion, honest analysis — and hopefully in some shape or form we expand the fan base.”

He could make for good TV when being full of shenanigans can make for good TV. Consider his tweets from a few hours after the news broke:

Guess that’s better than tweeting about aliens, right? Maybe Canseco will be a fantastic analyst. A-Rod is. But there’s also just as good of a chance that Canseco will shoot himself in the hand again. (That is mean to be, somehow, both literal and figurative).

Curt Schilling has taught us what can happen when you’re an outspoken ex-player on social media who also tries to have a TV career for a big ol’ company. And NBC is a big ol’ company, if you haven’t noticed.

Might Canseco bring some of that Barkley-type unfiltered commentary to A’s broadcasts? Most certainly, and that’s why probably a big reason he got the job. He’ll give A’s fans a reason to watch. But Canseco might also cross that very thin line between being a fun guy to have on TV and being a liability.

We know, because history has shown us this, again and again.

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Mike Oz is the editor of Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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