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Ryan Vogelsong And Jeremy Lin: Kindred Spirits

A talented young player who is overlooked for years before bursting onto the scene as one of the most unexpected stars in the big leagues? Certainly, that's the story currently taking the world by storm regarding New York Knicks point guard and Palo Alto native Jeremy Lin. But it also bears more than a passing resemblance to the recent feel-good story that Bay Area fans experienced in 2011, when the San Francisco Giants brought pitcher Ryan Vogelsong back to Major League Baseball.

John Shea of SFGate recently conducted a phone interview with Vogelsong and yes, the Giants hurler has been paying attention to Linsanity -- just like the rest of the country. The parallels aren't lost on Vogelsong, either.

The coolest thing is the fans' response and the way he picked up teammates. Absolutely, I think there are similarities. I'm definitely older, and I came back to the big leagues. But in interviews, I see teammates so happy for the guy, teammates with big smiles when they're talking about him.

For me, when my teammates did that, that was almost as enjoyable as being on the mound.

I also see joy in the faces of fans, and that was pretty awesome when I saw that last year. The fans' response kind of drove me. I hadn't experienced that. I was booed in Pittsburgh. It helped take my game to another level, and I think it's the same for [Lin].

Vogelsong's arrival as a top pitcher in an already-formidable Giants rotation was one of the highlights of a disappointing 2011 season for the Giants. Vogelsong reported to Spring Training with pitchers and catchers on Saturday and he -- like all Giants fans -- must be looking forward to seeing how he can follow last year's performance.

Vogelsanity, anyone?

For all news and information regarding Ryan Vogelsong and the San Francisco Giants, please visit McCovey Chronicles. For updates and perspective on Jeremy Lin and the New York Knicks, head on over to Posting and Toasting or visit SB Nation New York.