Bochy called it a tough decision, comparing this situation to leaving left-hander Barry Zito off the postseason roster for all three rounds during the 2010 run to the franchise's first championship since 1954.
Zito, meanwhile, is another option out of the bullpen if needed. San Francisco won Zito's final 11 starts.
The 2002 AL Cy Young Award winner with the Oakland Athletics had his best season since joining the Giants on a $126 million, seven-year contract before the 2007 season. Zito won his last five starts and seven decisions of the regular season since a loss Aug. 2 to the Mets.
"I wouldn't rule out anything," Bochy said of a Game 4 — if the series gets that far.
Lincecum was the first Giants starter since Livan Hernandez in 2001 to make at least 30 starts and have an ERA as high as 5.18. The 28-year-old pitcher also allowed a majors-high 28 runs in the first inning after giving up only eight all of last year.
While he was 1-6 with a 9.00 ERA in his first nine road starts, Lincecum was 5-0 with a 3.16 ERA over his final six away from AT&T Park.
Ultimately, Bochy decided based on the consistency of playoff first-timer Vogelsong (14-9, 3.37 ERA). He threw a bullpen session Saturday after being told the plan a couple of days ago.
"I talked to Timmy, Timmy knows," Bochy said. "Timmy understands. It's fair to say it's been an up-and-down year for Timmy. It's been a fight for him all year."