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Niese's ex-teammate says he'll pay up

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JUPITER, Fla. (AP)

Carlos Beltran plans on paying New York Mets lefty and former teammate Jonathan Niese in person for a $10,000 nose job.

Beltran, now with the St. Louis Cardinals, said Thursday that he'll have a check for Niese when his new team plays the Mets in spring training. The clubs are about a 40-minute interstate drive apart in Florida.

''I did get the bill, yeah,'' Beltran said. ''I want to go there and give it to him personally.''

Beltran maintained he didn't recommend surgery last summer, but he did offer to foot the bill after Niese said the procedure wasn't a priority.

''He came to me the day after the conversation and he said `Are you sure you're going to pay for it?''' Beltran said. ''I said, `Well, I'll pay for it if you're going to do it.' I guess he was happy that he didn't have to pay $10,000 for his nose.''

The 25-year-old pitcher had surgery to correct a deviated septum in October and said earlier this week that he's been breathing easier now that the right nostril is no longer blocked.

''You know what, the only thing I did was offer my service to pay, that's all I did,'' Beltran said. ''I didn't tell him to do anything. I know people said I recommended nose surgery. That's impossible I was going to recommend a person have nose surgery.''

Tagged: Cardinals, Carlos Beltran

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