In case you didn’t know, longtime Baltimore sportscaster Keith Mills is retiring, sort of, with plans to step back from his full-time gigs with WBAL Radio, WBAL-TV and 98 Rock.
Another thing you may not have known: Mills, a sports journalist of nearly four decades, hates computers. So, with two days left before his partial retirement, the folks at the radio station on TV Hill let him have his own Wreck Room-style session with a desktop PC outside.
As you’ll see below, Mills is ecstatic after connecting with the computer—first with a baseball bat, then with a single death blow from an oversized hammer—raising his arms triumphantly and thanking whomever came up with the idea. WBAL NewsRadio’s Bryan Nehman and Anne Kramer go on to emphatically explain he regularly encounters technical struggles with the PC.
“It is like oil and water, politics and sports, water and cereal—they do not go together in any circumstances,” says Kramer.
“It’s almost like he’s allergic to computers, or computers are allergic to him,” adds Nehman.
Mills began his storied career in Baltimore sports in 1980 as a producer at WJZ-TV, and transitioned to an on-air gig five years later. He joined competitor WMAR in 1987, where he stayed for two decades before moving to WBAL.
Infamously, he was arrested and pleaded guilty to stealing pain pills from a neighbor’s house in 2006, two years after being charged with other drug-related offenses stemming from his addiction. Writing in reflection in 2015, he summarized the period as “a humiliating phase of my life that I will live with forever.” But after rehab, and while serving his probation, Mills picked up where he left off by getting hired to work for Channel 11, 1090 AM and 98 Rock, reclaiming his role as a one-man institution in local sports news.
Thirteen years later, Mills is currently enjoying something of a farewell tour, chronicling his top 15 sports moments for WBAL (at the top of that list: the final-ever Orioles game played at Memorial Stadium) and getting a celebratory segment and party in his honor last Friday from WBAL-TV. And there’s been lots of love on-air from the guys at 98 Rock, plus surprise visits from legends like retired University of Maryland men’s basketball coach Gary Williams and Navy football coach Ken Niumatalolo.
He’s not really going away, with plans to still appear on WBAL Radio’s pre- and post-game Ravens shows and the TV station’s “Ravens Wrap,” along with some eventual sideline reporting in Annapolis for Navy football.