OK, to be fair here, there are two San Diego Padres hats that I feel every fan should own. However, in the interest of debate, I’ll back one hat and defend it to the death.
Also, I don’t want to use the word “travesty” when referring to the current uniforms; however, they’re just too blah and mundane to be memorable. It’s as if the jerseys are conservative and bland enough as to not evoke any emotion with the league or their fans.
The first hat, the 1984 Padres hat, is an all-time classic. Arguably the most iconic brown hat, the movement has transcended through the decades and you’ll likely to see many of these hats at any game held at Petco Park today.
The Padres' brown uniforms were more than just a jersey color. They symbolized the laid-back nature of the Padres and Southern California.
Esquire—yes, that Esquire—even ranked the 1984 Padres hat in its list of most stylish hats of all time. Although it’s easy to question the credibility of the list when the Pads cap ranks behind the likes of the Montgomery Biscuits, the Kinston Indians and the Louisville Bats. Also, notably absent from the list is the Milwaukee Brewers baseball mitt hat with what I consider to be the best and most creative logo to date.
The second hat, though, brings back the more recent glory days of the Padres. The 1998 Padres hat evokes memories of Wally Joyner’s fanclub, Wally’s World, Greg Vaughn walking up to the batters box with "Gin and Juice" by Snoop Dogg playing and, of course, Ken Caminiti breaking bats over his knee.
Also, it’s a rule when wearing this hat that you have to refer to the old Padres stadium as Jack Murphy Stadium, as opposed to the current corporate name.
Look, getting rid of the orange from the uniforms was a terrible mistake on behalf of the Padres. There are countless teams that stick to the blue and white, most notably the rivals 150 miles up I-5.
The orange and blue from the 1998 hats were classic Padres. The team was fun to watch, actually good, and brings up memories before the PED era where nobody questioned a guy who suddenly hit 50 homeruns.
What do you think? Which hat should get more notoriety?