Aaron Hill was expecting to have to make a decision on whether to have surgery on his slow-to-heal left hand but he was given news on Friday that made it a no-brainer.

Hill whose fractured hand showed only mild improvement in the first two months after he broke it has somehow mended enough over the final third of the season that he will not require off-season surgery.

“They said it’s like 80 percent healed” said Hill who underwent an MRI on Friday. “In the last two months it’s decided to heal. My last MRI I think it was two months ago nothing had changed. (Hand specialist Dr. Don Sheridan) called me yesterday and said ‘You won’t believe this!’

“We didn’t want to do surgery anyway and now this definitely confirms that we won’t. I was happy to hear that yesterday.”

Hill was hit by a pitch by Pirates right-hander James McDonald on April9 suffering a broken bone that more than six weeks after the injury still had not healed. Hill opted to return from the disabled list anyway — he was activated on June25 — and play through what was called a “nonunion” fracture.

The hand bothered him at points in July enough that he began to think surgery was inevitable. But he found some strengthening exercises that helped and the hand hasn’t been an issue for several weeks.

The doctors told Hill they hadn’t seen anything like it although oddly enough teammate Willie Bloomquist had a basically identical injury and healing timetable this season.

Hill said they’re not sure what prompted the healing.

“I said ‘Was it because I started to play and make the blood flow and caused it to heal?’” Hill said. “(Sheridan) said ‘I don’t know. Maybe.’”

Despite the injury Hill has had another productive year at the plate. In 324 at-bats entering Saturday he was hitting .293 with 33 extra-base hits and an .824 OPS.