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Paul Beeston waves during a Toronto Blue Jays press conference in Toronto on Feb. 5, 2015.Kevin Van Paassen/The Globe and Mail

The Toronto Blue Jays have named former long-time executive Paul Beeston president emeritus.

The team says the appointment is "in honour and recognition of his many years of service and contributions to the organization."

Beeston retired as team president last November.

"This is simply a small token of recognition for the nearly four decades he's given the game," Beeston's successor Mark Shapiro said in a news release. "We felt it was right to honour the legacy he has built and ensure he's a part of the future successes of this team."

Beeston was the first employee hired by the Blue Jays in 1976 and saw the team through its glory years over two decades ago.

He retired for the first time after a five-year run in Major League Baseball's commissioner's office came to an end in 2002.

Beeston returned to the Blue Jays in 2008. His second run with the team was capped last fall after a gripping playoff run ended with a six-game loss to Kansas City in the American League Championship series.

"I am truly fortunate to once again be welcomed back into this great organization," he said in a release. "To have a small role moving forward is something that I sincerely appreciate."