When the Padres made their MLB debut in 1969, the team donned a simple brown cap adorned with a gold interlocking SD. They carried the brown in various iterations with them until the last decade of the century had the Padres change into one of their most popular colorways ever. From 1969 until 2003, the Padres used many different styles of cap and colorway. It's now time to rank them. Which historic cap is your favorite? Which one belongs in the dustbin of history? Is brown and orange better than brown and gold?
Welcome to Selection Saturday!
It's time to seed our picks for the Historic Bracket. Check it out:
It's a little unorthodox with the inclusion of the wild card, but I think we'll see some competitive match-ups across the board. Here are the contestants:
A. 1969 Cap - Brown/Gold
The cap that started it all, this cap debuted with the Padres induction into Major League Baseball in 1969. It remains a popular cap due to its simplicity and clean looks.
B. 1971 Cap - Gold/Brown
The first alternate cap the Padres ever utilized was this interesting cap. Gold takes over the crown in this road cap.
C. 1973 Cap - Brown/Gold Split Panel
A classic Padres design, the split-panel "bell" cap lasted twice as long as its predecessors. Its influence can be felt in the new modern alternate cap. The Padres hosted their first All-Star Game wearing this cap.
D. 1980 Cap - Brown/Gold/Orange Split Panel
Tony Gwynn donned this cap in his MLB debut. This update on the split-panel design added orange piping and accents to the classic Padres design. This cap saw use in the Padres' first World Series appearance.
E. 1985 Cap - Brown/Orange
Departing from the split-panel design and gold color used for 13 years, the Padres went back to a simple brown cap with an updated orange interlocking SD.
F. 1991 Cap - Navy/White/Orange
Brown met its end in the last decade of the 1900s. The new Padres colorway featured navy, white, and orange in a combination that saw the Padres host their second All-Star Game and play in their second World Series. This cap went on to be the longest-used in the Padres' history (9 years as a primary, 12 years overall).
I'm sure you have some questions about these caps:
- So what happened to 1972? It seems like the caps from 1972 are stuck in 1972. I've never seen a remade version (or an original version, for that matter) of the first split-panel cap with full wrapping panels. The road cap is incredibly similar to the '69 cap save for a yellow button, so you're not missing much aesthetically. I'll be absolutely shocked if there's a huge following for the 1972 cap.
- Shouldn't the 1991 cap be in the modern bracket? I had a long internal debate on this cap. After compiling all the caps for the tournament and choosing how to assemble the bracket, a balance was achieved with 7 caps per side. The navy/orange/white colorway was last used in regular rotation 13 years ago (I feel old too). Its inclusion in a field with mostly brown caps will help prove whether the best cap in Padres history is truly a brown cap.
- WC? What's that? The Wild Card cap is a secret cap I'm throwing in against the 6th seed. Don't worry, it's a cap from Padres history. I think it'll be an interesting choice against the cap you least like. Let's see if you really don't like that lowest seed cap.
- So how do we seed the caps? It's simple: rank each cap from 1 to 6, with 1 being your absolute favorite and 6 being the one you think should be banished and left in the dusty annals of Padres history. I've provided several different indicators for you to use: a letter, the year of the cap's induction, and the colorway. Pick whichever one you prefer to use! Rank 'em in the comments and we'll compile the results and get all the caps seeded and ready for competition.
Get your ranks in before Friday, March 11th!
Thanks in advance for your help and participation! Let's have some fun and start the quest to find the best cap in Padres history!