TAMPA, Fla. (FOX 13) - Baseball is a game that kids still love to play.
For 18-years, Greg Parris has been in charge of the USF Bulls summer baseball camps. He has seen the number of campers change throughout the years, but he doesn't believe baseball is losing it's next generation of players or fans.
"I think the little kids are still the same," said Parris USF Director of Baseball Operations. "They come. They love the game. They have fun. It's pretty much consistent throughout the years."
Little League has seen a massive decline in participation, since 2007. Player signups have dropped 43%. But that doesn't correlate to the number of kids playing youth baseball. Instead, they've been turning to travel ball instead.
"I used to love Little League," said Brooke Leistl USF Softball player. "It has gotten taken away from kids because now it's all about getting recruited [for college] and you don't get recruited from Little League."
Major League Baseball claims there has been growth in participation over the last five years, but fans in the stands are in a decline for a second straight season.
Florida produces the second most Division I baseball players and major-leaguers, but in Florida, fans don't turn out to watch. The sunshine state's two teams have the lowest attendance in the league.
The Marlins are last, with fewer than 10,000 per game.
Former major-leaguer, Lance Berkman says there's no quick fix for turning around Major League Baseball's troubles in Florida.
"In order for it to work, there is going to have to be some sustained winning over, say, a decade," said Berkman. "I also think having a good ballpark is a big plus. It needs to be a ballpark that people enjoy coming to. It needs to become, sort of, a community type thing. We'll see if they can get it done."
What needs to be done to improve the turnout for Tampa Bay Rays games may be a change in location.
"I think the location is a little far for people," said USF baseball player Baron Stuart. "I feel there are a lot more baseball fans in [Northeast Tampa] than there are in St. Pete. It would be nice to change locations and give the fans a little more different atmosphere."