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Renovations to the Rogers Centre will continue until mid-season.Laura Proctor/The Globe and Mail

Some cities have good baseball teams. Toronto has a hot, new 40,000-seater restaurant instead.

What do they serve there? Hot dogs.

But not the hoof-filled meat tubes you’re used to, you savage. These are artisanal jobs loaded with “shawarma and tzatziki” or “battered in rice flour,” per the press release.

Elsewhere, you can find “mango-forward” margaritas (what happened to tequila forward?), “plant-based Wurst,” and fries tossed in a “custom parmesan mix.”

What would make the parmesan “custom,” I wonder? The only thing I can think of is that it isn’t made in Parma. Nothing like Bowmanville cheese to bring out the hops in your eighth tallboy.

A real aesthete knows food is just one aspect of the dining experience. A great spot needs a great space. So how’s the room?

It’s big. Sort of the same. They’ve widened a few causeways. On tours done by the club, much was made of looking at the floor to see where the concrete seams used to be. Other than that, same.

I don’t know what to tell you. Some of the lower-bowl seats have been turned the right way. If you’re willing to fork out two weeks’ rent, they’ve added four inches of width to a very few of them. Think of it as premium economy (minus the economy).

Mostly, the latest phase of the Rogers Centre’s $400-million renovation looks like a bunch of new chairs.

But to those invested in the mysteries of the entertainment business, it is a revelation.

“It may feel to the naked eye that you’re just sitting in seats, but nothing existed here just a few months ago,” Blue Jays president Mark Shapiro said on Thursday. “A project that should have taken a year and a half, two years, was accomplished in six months.”

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Behold, Toronto – the Immaculate Construction.

It’s like the loaves and fishes, but sourced exclusively from local suppliers and definitely not free.

Maybe the Keg-ification of the Jays’ ballpark doesn’t seem all that amazing because we’ve heard so much about it. If you follow the Toronto Blue Jays exclusively through press releases, it’s renovation, renovation, renovation, new craft beers on tap and baseball – in that order.

When announcing the project in 2022, Shapiro called it “turning a stadium into a ballpark.” He’s done that, insofar as it is possible.

The essential ugliness of the Rogers Centre is immutable. But with the concrete buttresses de-emphasized, it no longer looks like a luxury internment camp.

Renovations will continue until mid-season. By then, the rich will have their own bunker behind home plate and Shapiro’s legacy will be secured. In two years, he’s turned one of the most depressing buildings in sport into a 20-storey-tall cash register.

So now what?

It’s always been obvious that winning at baseball does not feature high on the priority list of the current Jays’ regime – neither management nor ownership.

However, talking about how infrastructure affects baseball does matter to them. Shapiro was at it again on Thursday – a facility “that offers the best distribution of resources mentally, physically and fundamentally for our players, and ultimately what will be not just years but decades of competitive advantage.”

When they were ripping out the seats, is it possible they tore out the TV cables that go up to Shapiro’s office? Has he watched his team recently? Those advantages he’s talking about are not apparent.

Infrastructure is manageable. You can keep your promises and hit your targets.

A baseball team is a different beast. That’s art, not science, and Shapiro’s never had the knack of it.

What he does have is a genius for stretching delivery dates when it suits him.

Change contractors mid-job? No, that’s a terrible idea. As far as the Jays are concerned, the current contractor is doing fine. Look, they have a bunch of spreadsheets that show exactly how this season should turn out it. The data says so.

Even if the results are bad, the method is sound – that is the Blue Jays’ current philosophy.

It’s worked because, by Rogers’ lights, Shapiro is doing a job no one else in baseball wants to do. Everyone else in the game wants to do baseball. This guy’s willing to do contracting.

It’s not nothing. Have you tried getting someone to put in new kitchen cupboards? The first thing they’ll tell you is that you need a new electrical panel. What’re you going to do? Argue with them?

Then they’ll promise you it’ll be done in two weeks. A year later, you’ll just be glad to be rid of them.

Shapiro got the Rogers Centre torn halfway down to the studs and rebuilt in five months. To anyone who’s ever done a major reno, that is a miracle.

The only problem is that this work has come at the expense of the baseball team.

Not in terms of dollars – somehow, the Jays have the seventh-highest payroll in major-league baseball. You look up and down that lineup most nights and think, ‘Where are they spending it?’

But the renovations have allowed the Jays to convince themselves that things are going great. Sure, the team is headed toward a cliff, but they managed to get the new foundation down in record time.

Monday is the home opener. Everyone will be excited for an hour. They’ll have their mango drinks and hot dogs in gold flake and then the construction excuse stops working.

Unless Shapiro can convince ownership he needs to build a state-of-the-art parking garage, from Tuesday on he will be judged solely on the team’s performance. He managed to put that off for nine years. It’s resulted in a diverse range of culinary offerings.

So as a restaurant, I give the Toronto Blue Jays four stars. Tempting pregame bites; enthusiastic service; a place for all budgets.

But you might want to leave before the show starts. A lot of nights, it can be depressing.

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