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    Baseball caps are more creative than ever — and one store has more than 1,000 on display
    • October 6, 2023

    The Major League Baseball playoffs are underway, and it’s time to get your ball cap on. In nearly two centuries, the baseball cap has seen a variety of shapes, sizes and designs. It used to be that MLB caps were sold in traditional team colors. Today, fans can support their team with ball caps in a variety of colors and fashions.

    A UNIQUE COLLECTIONIvan Ramirez, owner of The Locker Room of Downey, has well over 1,000 ball caps on display, making it one of California’s largest cap retail stores. Here are the most notable, and some exclusive, Los Angeles Dodger baseball caps in his collection:


    EL CENTENARIO: Named for the Bicentennial and Mexican coin, a centenario; this was their number one selling hat of all time.



    THE HUMILDE: A collaboration with music producer Jimmy Humilde.


    L.A. REAL TREE 100: Real tree fabric was hot this season and the store could not keep this in stock.


    THE DAWN OF A NEW ERA: Designed to represent Downey, “D” and the year 2020 when the hat craze started.


    THE SPIRIT: Inspired by the colors of 76 gas stations, the longest-running sponsor of the Dodgers.


    RED AND BLUE 1959 SOMBRERO (Exclusive): Features the discontinued logo of the 1959 All-Star Game that took place in Los Angeles.


    MEMORIAL COLISEUM (Exclusive): This hat, as well as the patch of the Coliseum, has been discontinued and is expected to be a collector’s item.


    THE JACKIE ROBINSON (Side Patch): This features a side patch of Dodger icon Jackie Robinson. This is a popular hat among fans.


    LOOK MOM, NO HANDS: Made in collaboration with motivational speaker Ryan Hudson-Peralta, who was born without hands.



    1849: The New York Knickerbockers wore the first baseball caps, which were straw hats. A few years later, the team switched to a cap made of merino that featured a crown and a bill, which are two main characteristics of the modern-day cap.

    1860: The baseball cap evolved to a longer brim and deeper, button-top crown, first worn by the Brooklyn Excelsiors.

    1901-1902: The Detroit Tigers became the first team to put their mascot on its cap.


    1903: Spalding unveiled the “Philadelphia” caps with a stitched brim that held the shape better.

    1920: Ehrhardt Koch, a German immigrant living in Buffalo, N.Y., founded New Era Cap Co. and produced 60,000 Gatsby hats in the first year

    1930s: WIth competition fierce and revenues falling, New Era focused on baseball caps, which were becoming popular. In 1934, the company struck a deal with the Cleveland Indians and produced its first official big league cap. In the years that followed, New Era picked up more teams.

    1947: The St. Louis Browns were the first team to use what would eventually be known as the 59Fifty style cap. Because the caps laid flat on the ballplayer’s head, Koch reinforced crown of the cap with buckram so it would stand upright to better display the team logo.

    1954: New Era launched 59FIfty and it became the official model for major league baseball caps. Sources vary on the meaning of its name – from the cap’s original catalog number, 5950, to the fabric Koch used to produce the original design.

    1970s: The open strap-back cap style came into play, and the below visor color changed from green to gray. Screen-printing during this time was implemented as well, which allowed for additional creativity.

    1980: New Era ran an ad in the Sporting News, offering fans the opportunity to purchase authentic baseball caps – the same ones the players wore. The fan market exploded and New Era went from made-to-order to mass production.

    1993: New Era became the official cap supplier for all of Major League Baseball and the MLB logo was added to the back of the caps.

    1997: When the Yankees went to the World Series, filmmaker Spike Lee had New Era make him a red Yankees cap to match with his red down jacket that had Yankees scripted on it. When his cap was seen on national television, the fashion trend ignited.

    Sources: New Era, The Locker Room of Downey, MLB,, El Pais, The Guardian,,

    ​ Orange County Register