Sunday, December 30, 2007

Post GC 12/29

After 20 minutes, I was up $250.

After 60 minutes, I was down $50.

After 3.5 hours, I was down $340.

After 3.75 hours, I threw in my last $20 chip on the river. But I won.

After 4 hours, I quit, down $270.

Maybe a hit and run after 20 minutes wouldn't have been a bad idea.


I started out winning four hands in a row soon after I sat down with 99, AA, K8 (big blind), and an unpaired AKo. I've never had a run like that, and I single-handedly eliminated the guy to my left (it was he who asked me to change a $20 chip).

Then, things went bad. My cards went cold and I had second best hand after second best hand. I lost with top set in a four-way pot capped on the turn:

I raise in early position with 99. Tricky/aggressive guy to my left three-bets, yet we still get six players to the flop (I didn't cap, so 18 small bets). Flop comes 973 with two hearts. I bet, because what else can I do at this point? Build the pot and hope the guy to my left raises. He does, but we only lose one player.

Turn is an offsuit 4 (14 big bets). I check, hoping to trap the field for a bet after the tricky guy bets (I feel like he won't raise if I bet). But he checks, the next guy bets, the next guy raises, one cold call out of the BB, and on me. I can't fold here, but I'm not sure I can raise either. The raiser on the button has been pretty solid, and I feel like he's most likely got a straight, or I've got him slaughtered with two pair or a set. So I cold call. Raising won't knock out any draws and with all four of us in I'm getting odds. Guy to my left folds, original better raises, raiser caps with no hesitation, and now I'm almost positive he's got a straight (the other guy, he's been over-aggressive and doesn't need a straight to cap there).

River is an offsuit 5 (30 big bets), collectively the table groans, it checks to the guy on the button and he bets. I make the crying call (there's at least a 3% chance he's got a set of fives), and he shows a 56o.

And that is how you lose with top set and get a capped turn without making a single aggressive move. My only question is: against the raisers range on the turn, should I have three-bet?
I also lost with another set in a strange way -- was my value bet out of line on the end?
I have 33 in the cut-off and limp after some limpers. We get 6 to the flop of 234 (two diamonds) for one bet (6 SB). I forget the action, but I think someone in early position bets, I raise, and there are two callers. The turn is a non-diamond 6 (6 BB). It checks to me, and I feel pretty safe that nobody has a 5 yet there is a decent chance someone has a flush draw. So I bet again and both players call. River is an offsuit jack (9 BB). Checks to me and I throw out another value bet. One caller, I flip my set, and he shows a set of 6s. Ow.
Wire to wire, I dropped $600. Luckily, my ace-king hit on the end or else I'd be down $400.

It was a combination of really dry cards and getting out drawn when I had the best hand. I did have a few marginal calls and missed bets. I was definitely playing a bit timid at times, but not excessively (I usually had a reason):
AA in mid position. I raise it, and the button and BB called. The BB also gives a speech about me not playing a hand in forever. Flop comes 668 with two spades, checks to me, I bet, and only the BB calls. BB is a very aggressive guy who is way too loose preflop but plays decently postflop. Borderline maniac but he respects aggression. Turn is a blank (offsuit jack?), check-bet-call. River is the four of spades -- of course, at this point, I'm thinking 'no spade, no spade'. Damn. He hesitates then leads out and I'm positive I'm beat. I've never seen him bluff into an obvious strong hand. But, I'm getting 7:1 and call him. No flush though, he had a straight with 57o.

Can I fold here? At the time, I didn't bother considering it (reasonably large pot, good hand, crying call). But I think he'd be bluffing/have a worse hand less than 10% of the time. As Ed Miller says, making big laydowns on the river is playing with fire. But in my experience, people seem to fold the river way more than they should at GC (I had a woman who I raised on the turn with top set fold her two pair on the river...). Am I calling the river too much? I should look at SSHE again.
Another quick example of a marginal missed bet:
I had 99 MP, few callers, flop is 874 with two hearts and turn is offsuit 2. River is the Qh and I had one opponent left (a decent-playing, semi-aggressive, but loose woman). I checked behind her reasoning she might check-raise, but she had an 8. I think I should be betting against her range there.
Probably my worst fold of the night:
I have 83o in the big blind. We get four limpers, I check, and the flop is 9T7. UTG bets, the loose/aggressive guy that cracks my aces calls, and I call. I'm evaluating my chances, and I figure a 6 is much better than a jack, because then I'd have the low end of the straight. Of course, a jack falls, and I check. Partly it was a scared check, partly it was to check-raise the bettor (although, many guys won't bet there with four to a straight). But he does bet, LAG raises, and I'm facing calling two cold (or three-betting) to chop. I think for a little bit, and I fold. And it makes me feel so weak when the bettor folds and the raiser says he has a 'big 8'. I think I should have called there, or better yet, lead out with a bet. Again though, not a horrendous fold since it was a marginal situation for a chop at best, but still.
An example of putting too much money in:
Early in the session, I was still running really well. I had 76s in late position and flop comes K62 rainbow. Checks around to button who bets, two callers, and I call. Turn pairs the deuce, checks around. At this point, I think it is likely I have the best hand and the button guy was taking a shot at the pot. River is a 3, it checks to me, and I bet. SB calls and shows a K8o. He was an old guy, and as old guys do, he never bet or raised once.

After the hand, I realized my bet on the end was pretty worthless. Yeah, I might get called by a 3 or pocket 4s, but it is really thin. The chance of someone even with 77 is pretty decent, or I won't get called. Think I should just check that through against a large field, planning to call a single bet from the button (but not over call against two callers).
Another example of putting too much money in, but first, some background about a player. He was a youngish guy, probably college student. He had a book and headphones, which would have made me think he was pretty tight, but he played a decent number of hands. He raised often and seemed to play pretty well. Over the course of the night he won a decent amount of money.
In my first hand with him, he raised UTG. Folded to me in late position, and I three-bet with TT. My goal was to get it heads-up and take the betting lead. Folded to him, and he called. Flop was AQ3 rainbow, he checked, I bet, he called. Turn was a 9 (4.5 small bets). He checked, I took another shot, hoping to get him off KK, JJ, or a queen, but he called. Check-check on the river blank. He rolled over AKo. Was I out of line on the three-bet pre-flop? Should I have slowed down earlier (i.e. the turn)? I think I played it right, but it seems like a horrible flop for my hand.
My second hand with him:
I got QTs in medium position, and limped after a limper (the illusive big-suited connector). Folded to the young guy (YG) in the BB who raises and we each call the bet. Flop comes T83 rainbow with one diamond (my suit). YG checks, limper checks, I bet, YG raises. Turn comes jack of spades and I think a long time, struggling to compute my odds and outs. YG's range is relatively large, including a big pair, better 10, small pair on crack, set, etc. I figure I'm most likely up against a large pair but with 9 outs (3 Qs, 2 Ts, 4 9s) I'm trying to figure out my odds. Doing it now, I was getting 6:1 with 9 outs (although some may not be good, and if he has TT, I've only got four outs). I think the call was borderline. River is an offsuit king, he bets, I fold. He shows me a queen, then says he had pocket queens. The thing is, any raising hand including a queen had me beat on a KJT8 board. Unless he had QT to chop. But I think he did have queens and just pulled a strange move on the flop. My turn call was marginal but not horrible.
Of course, later on I saw him pull this move:
I forget the exact action, but YG was in EP and had raised and gotten a ton of callers. The flop comes QQ9 with two clubs. YG checks, the guy to his immediate left (super-fish who I've talked about before, although he was playing better (or getting better cards) last night) bets. YG folds his aces face-up for one bet on the flop -- super-fish shows QJo. What? How'd he know?
Makes me wonder. Is this guy really playing a few levels above me (reading me well enough to check-raise and force out the third (fishy) player) on the QT hand and then knowing that the guy next to him has trips?


If I had to point out one big difference in the tables last night vs during the week, it'd be the aggressiveness of the table. There were a lot of guys (one in particular) who were betting a ton, and without many hands, I never had a chance to get in there and gamble. I had very few large suited hands, which would have been perfect to three-bet the loose aggressive guy. And when I did have a hand, I was betting pretty much the whole way, resulting in a loss of a large pot when I got sucked out on, and a win of a medium pot if nobody hit.

Overall, I think I played pretty well other than getting a little timid at times. I didn't have any major mistakes, but I feel like a made a number of smaller ones.

The odd thing was, it was Saturday night, after 9 there was always a list and four 6/12 tables running, yet the players seemed better than average on both tables I played on. Are weeknights softer than weekend nights?


Verdict on my goals:
  1. Take a little extra time. I feel like I did this, enough that I was considering river value bets and the dealer reminded me a few times it was on me. B+
  2. Count the pot. Failed miserably at this. I am getting better at counting it, but I often was just staring at the pot on a decision and wondering what I should do. D
  3. Consider small pot vs large pot strategy. Feel like I did this pretty well, but not always. Sometimes my check vs bet vs raise decisions were good, sometimes they weren't. More study needed. C+
  4. Don't leave before 10:30 if I'm winning. A+. Of course, I left after 10:30 when I was losing, and my only opportunity to hit and run was 20 minutes in, and that was a little too soon.
  5. Switch tables if my table gets bad. I switched around 9:30 and it helped, at least at the beginning (I was down $-150 when I moved, got back up to $-50, then plummeted to my low of the night). The new table wasn't a ton better, but had some soft spots. A
  6. Have fun! Didn't do a good job of this. I think I should loosen up at the table a bit, both to get rid of the tight-nit image I've been getting (doesn't help when I don't even get suited connectors to play) and then I'm losing most of the night. C

1 comment:

CC said...

This is a healthy process I think, setting goals then reviewing them after a session.