Ranking the best off-field moments from the Tigers' Opening Day broadcast

The Tigers beat the A's 5-4 in their home opener. The broadcast was a lot of fun beyond the game action, too.
Detroit Tigers first base Spencer Torkelson (20) bats against Oakland Athletics during the first
Detroit Tigers first base Spencer Torkelson (20) bats against Oakland Athletics during the first / Junfu Han / USA TODAY NETWORK

Perhaps one of the best offseason moves the Detroit Tigers made had nothing to do with the team they had to put on the field. Instead, it was poaching Jason Benetti from a White Sox team that certainly did not deserve his talents. Getting Benetti marked a real effort on the part of the Tigers to improve their sleepy broadcast heading into a season with a lot to look forward to.

And Benetti, along with the rest of the Bally Sports Detroit crew, did not disappoint during Opening Day at Comerica Park. He and his compatriots in the booth, along with Johnny Kane reporting from the field, put on a great show for fans watching from home. The broadcast was packed with some fantastic moments that hopefully signal a theme for the season: a whole lot of fun. Here, we rank some of the best moments caught live on the air.

Ranking the off-the-field moments from Detroit Tigers' Opening Day broadcast

No. 4: Tigers' ball boy falling into the stands

MLB ballboys and girls have a tougher job on their hands than fans might think — just look to any of the compilations of their great catches or saves for confirmation. On Friday, the Tigers' ballboy assigned to the right field line got a bit of a scare put into him when a foul ball careened down in front of him, sending him sailing back into the stands as he tried to evade the ball.

He recovered with a little help from the fans out there in right, and when he came up he was all smiles, seeming to take the minor blunder in his stride. No one can blame him for doing what he could to get out of the way of that ball, which was just an inch away from taking his left foot out.

No. 3: "Spencer Twerkelson"

Kane got a workout during the home opener, sometimes seeming to be in multiple places at once. He was all over the outfield stands, getting some great one-on-one time with fans in a packed house. However, a real highlight also came from the tailgate in the parking lot, when the broadcast cut to him outside interacting with barbecuing fans who grabbed their moment in the spotlight and ran with it.

With Spencer Torkelson stepping up to bat, the broadcast cut to four fans twerking in a circle around Kane, who looked both overwhelmed and incredibly amused. We got a piece of broadcasting genius in response to the moment: Benetti spun a real turn of phrase that we hope will stick, introducing Torkelson as "Spencer Twerkelson." And that's why the Tigers hired him, folks!

No. 2: Jason Benetti being served Little Caesars just before Matt Vierling's first home run of the season

In Jason Benetti's return to the south side of Chicago on Opening Day, the Tigers broadcast crew gifted him with some Chicago-style deep dish pizza delivered fresh to the booth. To welcome him to Detroit during the home opener, they treated him with another delivery, this time with a pie of Detroit's own Little Caesars. The Ilitch-owned franchise is plastered all over Comerica Park, and it's even made its way into the dugout, with a Caesar's-themed home run celebration debuted this season (more on that later).

However, the crew couldn't have chosen a more inopportune time to bring Benetti his late lunch. It was barely in his hands before Matt Vierling cranked his first home run of the season to put the Tigers on the board, and Benetti had to redirect his pizza-themed line of narration toward the game. It was a line shot to left field, and Vierling took a quick jog around the bases before returning to the dugout and taking the home run pizza spear in hand. The Detroit Tigers might be synonymous with Little Caesars, at this point.

No. 1: A dedicated fan's homemade home run pizza celly replica

That aforementioned pizza spear will hopefully be getting a workout this season, and Tigers fans are already all over it. From the outfield, Kane interviewed a fan named Kenny from Marysville, who brought a homemade replica of the new celebration prop — and, from the looks of it — a really well-made one, at that. He said to Kane, "I put this concotion together in my garage last night." It only contained two pies instead of the Tigers' three (Kenny explained that the third pie made it too heavy), but this fan absolutely gets an A+ from us for the amazing effort.

Following the interview, Kenny was rewarded quickly when Mark Canha, on a very hot start to the season, hit a no-doubter out of the park to extend the Tigers' lead by two runs. Unsurprisingly, the broadcast cut to the fan going wild with his pizza spear. No one deserved a home run moment like that more. Pizza-pizza to you, Kenny from Marysville.