Vogelsong's return promises to launch another chapter in his eventful professional saga. He overcame rejection from organizations in the Major Leagues and Japan to become a National League All-Star in 2011 and the Giants' leading winner in last year's postseason.
Vogelsong said Monday that facing the Orioles will culminate a rehabilitation process that reflects "everything I've been through, throughout my career. It's been 2 1/2 months of what it took for me to get here in the first place."
Vogelsong made his final Minor League injury rehab start Sunday, allowing one run and five hits in six innings for the Giants' Double-A Richmond affiliate in its 8-3 victory over New Hampshire. The right-hander allowed three runs in 15 2/3 innings in four rehab appearances, posting a 1.72 ERA.
The Giants had considered assigning Vogelsong one more Minor League tuneup, but manager Bruce Bochy said that the aftermath of Sunday's 85-pitch effort convinced the team that he was ready to return.
"More than anything, how he came out of it, how good he feels and the number of pitches he threw," Bochy said. He added that Vogelsong probably can elevate his pitch count to 100 if necessary against the Orioles.
Vogelsong said that he's throwing all of his pitches pain-free.
"I don't even think about it," he said, referring to the injury he sustained when he was hit by a pitch from Washington's Craig Stammen on May 20. Vogelsong added that he has been able to make mechanical adjustments between deliveries, just as he must do in a big league game, and he felt secure that he has honed his mental approach.
"You know that's a big thing for me," he said.
Vogelsong owns a 2-4 record with a 7.19 ERA in nine starts, though he pitched five shutout innings against Washington before his mishap.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Alex Espinoza is a contributor to MLB.com.