SAN DIEGO — An El Centro resident and super San Diego Padres fan says he has the world’s largest Padres hat collection.
One room in his house holds his 1,800 hats, more than 1,000 of them are San Diego Padres. It took him 17 years to build this CAPtivating collection.
“Wearing a hat was always just sort of natural for me, and of course that sort of fell hand and hand for my love for the Padres, I’m a huge a baseball fan thanks to my dad,” Tim Arzaga said.
Arzaga says he lost his dad to COVID last year, and knows his dad would have been ecstatic to see the Padres send the Dodgers home this postseason.
“Part of the reason why I keep a collection like this as well is to keep some of his memory,” he added.
Arzaga’s hats are organized by color and by patches. And he can point out any hat that you want to see within seconds. His first hats? An all black and all white SD hat. His latest hat? The postseason 2022 hats.
With 1,800 hats, he has enough to wear a new one every day for almost five years.
“I pick the hat first before i pick the outfit,” he said.
From the Padres 40th anniversary to the 2016 and 1978 All-Star Game, the San Diego Stadium hat, a Petco Park one, all the way to a rare one the team has never worn, to a new corduroy fitted one.
With this many hats, comes a lot of superstitions.
He said he’s been wearing a lot of brown when the Padres win, so he plans to continue that as the Padres travel to Philadelphia for Friday’s Game 3.
He does not own a Dodgers hat, but he does own a Padres hat in Dodger Blue. However, he has a Phillies custom hat made in collaboration with POP Cereal. He said he’s never been concerned owning a Phillies hat, until now, and said it will not be worn or shown during this series.
There’s about 40 hats in his collection that he does not want to touch for at least the next few weeks: the 1998 World Series Padres hats. He hopes he can add more to his World Series collection soon.
As the Padres play for the pennant, Arzaga has his eyes on a win for his own collection.
“There is currently no world record holder, but I would love to take a swing at it,” he added.