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Two-time Home Run Derby champ and his Maine-made bats

Alonso won the MLB Home Run Derby Monday night for the second time in a row.

SHIRLEY, Maine — Pete Alonso of the New York Mets won the Major League Baseball Home Run Derby Monday night for the second time in a row.

Across all rounds, he smashed a total of 74 homers, and he did it using a bat made in the Piscataquis county town of Shirley. That's where Dove Tail Bats is headquartered.

The company got a lot of attention when Pete Alonso set a rookie record for home runs in 2019, and then won that year's home run derby.

Dove Tail Bats co-owner Paul Lancisi said that "boosted our birch bat sales, which really gives credibility to the wood, especially the resource that's coming out of Maine."

Alonso's Home Run Derby title number two could be another solid hit for Dove Tail. Lancisi said he has a degree in wood science and furniture making, "so wood has been my entire life."

The company owned by Paul and his wife Theresa used to make custom cabinets. They shifted to baseball bats when one of their sons was playing in college, and that business took on a life of its own.

Dove Tail makes bats out of white rock maple, white ash, and Pete Alonso's choice: yellow birch.

Paul Lancisi explained the difference.

"Maple is a very stiff and rigid wood which is hard. But you have to produce the majority of the energy for it. On a birch bat, a player does not have to swing as hard, because the flexibility makes up for the amount of power you're trying to generate."

He added their bats are a Maine-made product from start to finish.

"100% of the product is made here, and we take a lot of pride in our craftsmanship and our diligence and the quality of work that we produce."

There's a science to making the right baseball bat, and in the case of the ones created for Alonso, there's an art, too. He brought eight bats to the Home Run Derby, all specially painted.

Lancisi said they basically tell Alonso's life story with art by Los Angeles- based artist Gregory Siff.

Dove Tail Bats has made another 42 bats that will be painted and then sold by Pete Alonso to benefit his foundation Homers for Heroes. He started the charity last year to honor the people on the front lines of the pandemic and others who take care of each other.