Orr to go behind home plate for Nats

Infielder Pete Orr will play in the Florida Instructional League this offseason to work on his catching skills. The Nationals are looking for him to be an emergency catcher in 2010. 

The idea of putting Orr behind the plate was made by Triple-A Syracuse manager Tim Foli, who was an emergency catcher with the Mets in the early 1970s. The Nationals decided to implement the plan on Thursday after catcher Wil Nieves went down with a left hamstring injury.

Orr, who has played seven positions during his professional career, is open to learning a new position because it would mean he has a better chance to stay on a big-league roster.

“I never caught a game on a high level. I caught bullpens,” Orr said.                  

Orr has been impressive ever since he was called up from Syracuse on Aug. 28. In 16 games, Orr is 15-for 44 [.341] with a home run and eight RBIs.       

“Pete is a terrific extra player. He is a great makeup guy. He is a guy I’ve always liked,” general manager Mike Rizzo said.    

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