Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 7/20/12

General manager Terry Ryan challenged the theory that the Minnesota Twins' offense has been betrayed by lousy pitching this season.

"We're averaging four runs a game. That isn't a very good offense," he said Thursday before the Twins lost to the Baltimore Orioles 4-3 at Target Field. "I don't want to berate my own organization here, but I have to be honest: We're not scoring runs. We score 19 the other day, and then we come back (Wednesday) and score one (in a 2-1 loss). That's the type of stuff we're dealing with here."

The Twins are averaging 4.3 runs through 92 games, about dead center in the majors.

"It's isn't enough," Ryan said. "It's not enough in the American League, by any stretch."

It does, however, look good in relation to the team's pitching, which as a whole ranks 29th in ERA (4.93) and runs allowed (393), and dead last in home runs allowed (124). The team has used 11 pitchers in the rotation, and the starters' combined numbers are 23-43 with a 5.97 ERA -- again, second worst among all major league teams.

That more than anything has convinced Ryan to sell as the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline nears. The Twins, he said, simply can't get better until the rotation gets better.

"Part of the job I have is to be realistic," Ryan said. "You don't win in major league baseball unless you've got a rotation that's reliable. You can probably get by without offense, you might be able to get by without a deep bullpen -- though you need somebody on the back side -- but you aren't going to get by exposing your rotation, because you've got to be able to trot a guy out there every five days. I have to be realistic."

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