WATCH: Former Expo honoured prior to first of 2 pre-season MLB games at the Big 0

A number of former Montreal Expos were at the Big 0 Friday night, not to play, but to help honour of one them prior to a pre-season major league baseball game.

Tim Raines, who's been elected to the baseball hall of fame, was feted prior to the first of two games between the Toronto Blue Jays and Pittsburgh Pirates.

Raines, who played outfield and was known for stealing bases, also stole the hearts of fans during his time in Montreal..

"This has been pretty emotional for me", said Raines in front of 43,120 fans.

"You know I love this town... and there was no question in my mind when the hall called and said what hat I was gonna wear in the hall lof fame, there was no question that was gonna be Montreal", added Raines as fans cheered.

Former teammates who joined Raines for the ceremony, including ex pitcher Steve Rodgers and former outfielder Warren Cromartie.

Raines, who also played for the Chicago White Sox, the Yankees, Baltimore and the Marlins, played 12 seasons with the Expos.

The induction ceremony is scheduled for July. 

Some 45,000 fans are expected for Saturday's game between the Jays and Pirates. 

Earlier in the day, mayor Denis Coderre, a big baseball fan who's working to perhaps bring back an MLB team to Montreal, presented Raines with the key to the city.