Sunday, March 16, 2008


The bulk of this post was written Sunday night but I ran out of time before I could post it. I lost $99 in 6/12 Sunday night, and I've got a few hands from that session later too.

Well, after my first three months of $6-12 LHE (up to the beginning of March) were essentially break even, I never thought I'd be considering dropping the backing arrangement two weeks later. After yesterday's $681 win in 3.5 hours, I'm up $1390 in $6-$12 (before paying my backer) for March. My bankroll is reinvigorated to $2400+ and I'm ready to take on $6-$12 on my own dime.

I'm not dumb enough to think that I suddenly started playing ten times better this month; I've just had a nice hot streak. But I think 200 big bets is plenty bankroll for the California 6-12 games since LHE is generally low variance, I feel I have a significant edge on the field, and my playing style is relatively low variance.

Yesterday, before I played, I made the following goals:

  1. Bluff-raise the turn.
  2. Plan river play on the turn (i.e. if I call the turn, expect to call the river). Be willing to fold the turn if I have multiple reasons.
  3. Don't miss value bets! Be aggressive, aggressive, aggressive!
  4. Read players. Look at them!
#1 and #4 I did a horrible job at, mostly because I never really needed to. When the deck hits you over the head, bluffing is secondary and who cares what the other players have!

#3 I really pushed to the limit though. I never felt like I missed any value bets, although getting check-raised on the turn and river is happening more and more. More on that in another post. 6-12 is all about the value bets (actually, it's all about the benjamins -- it's nice to cash out 9 of them!).

#2 I think I did ok in, although I did call a few rivers where I was certain I was slaughtered (like when I was check-raised) but the pot was monster and I just paid off. Most of those spots I had an overpair or two pair.

As well as I'm doing, I'm actually going to try hard to stay focused. It is easy to think I've got everything figured out after a hot streak and relax a little. I've worked hard on my game and I need to keep it up. The last thing I want to do after earning my backing independence is lose a bunch back through bad play (bad luck is fine though, and I fully understand that could be coming).

Here's some random comments:

It is amazing how the aggressive guys keep betting into the fish. Like the guy to my right, he was playing at least 60% of pots, calling to the turn (and river) in most of them no matter what the cards, yet the 2-3 aggressive guys kept trying to bluff him out of the pot. He won a lot of pots at showdown with third pair. He also had an amazing habit of never raising big aces.

For example, one hand: 5 players in total pre-flop for one bet. Flop is all low hearts, BB (aggressive guy) leads out, only guy to my right (MF) calls. Turn is a medium non-heart, BB fires, MF calls. River is another blank, BB checks, MF checks and says, "I missed." He rolls over AQo (with the Qh) yet the BB rolls over A8o (Ah). Ace high wins!

Another really aggressive guy kept on betting through to the river and then saying 'No pair.' Sure, sometimes he had a monster, but he was trying to blow the calling stations out of the pot and it never worked! The aggressive guys kept giving chips to the loose passive guys and then I'd get the paid off for my hands by the loose-passives. At first I hated the table but as time went on I realized how nice it is to have a mix of LAGs, calling stations, and TAGs (and to know who they were!). For example, in one 6 way limped pot I had 99 and the flop came 226. I bet, late position calling station (LPCS) called and MF called. Turn was a 5. It checks to me, I bet, LPCS calls, MF check-raises(?), and I think for a few seconds and fold. MF never raised without a good hand and he had at have at least a 2. LPCS paid him off and he had quad 2s!

Random question: should I limp with 89o, 76o, T8o, etc in SB (or on the button, for that matter) with 5 players in (not counting me)? It seems too loose, but I know I play well enough after the flop to make up for some of that. Is it +EV?

Rivered tilt: Why does it bother me when someone rivers my two pair? Most things don't, but even with $800 stacked in front of me, I got a little tilty and had to control it last night. Considering how good I was running, why should one or two pots bother me? FYI, I got it under control and I don't think it changed my play at all. Again, it probably hurts more when they river the flush and I let them get in a check-raise, but like I said, that's another post.


Some random hands:
  • 97o on the button with 6 other players in (is this a bad call?). Flop comes 5 6d 9d and I call one bet with my second pair and then check to see if I have a diamond blocker... Oops! I don't have 86, I have 97! I'd normally raise in that spot. Anyway, turn comes 4x with four of us left (6.5 big bets). Aggressive guy bets again, and I raise to put pressure on those behind me and to make up for lost time. He calls. River is Jd, check-check. He has K9o. Should I have bet the river? (doubt it, he was paying off a lot). Was the turn raise a dumb idea given I probably didn't have the best hand? (I figured him for a better 9 than me, but only after he called the raise)
  • K2o in the big blind and one poster between the SB and button. LP raises; he's a very aggressive guy and has been firing to the river with air on a lot of hands. The poster and SB fold and I call since I figure I'm not in bad shape against his range and I'm getting good odds (was that a mistake? I was getting around 4:1). The flop comes T66 and I lead right out. I figure this will get me a read if he's got just overs and I have a pretty tight reputation. He just calls, so when the turn is an 8, I fire again. He raises! Well, that's it for me, I fold. He tells me that he had JJ, but if I three-bet, he'd have gone away. If he hadn't raised, I would have fired on the river too. He had demonstrated he could fold earlier. Thoughts?
  • 64o in BB. I get a free flop (about 6 players total) and the flop comes 58Q rainbow. I've got a gutshot and I'm not wild about it, but an aggr LP player bets (same guy as the 97o hand), there's at least two callers to me, so I take a card off. The turn is a 7, my perfect card. I check, aggressive guy bets, and I raise. It folds around to him, and he three-bets. Now I think for a few minutes, and say, "Cap it." He says: "It's heads-up, no cap, but I call anyway." River is some random high card, I bet, he calls. He has 64o also... He was in shock that I put the fourth bet in without the nuts -- I just figured it was too likely he had two pair or a set. After all, I didn't expect him to be betting into the field with a gutshot!
  • JJ in SB with two limpers to me. I raise and the BB folds but the limpers call. Flop comes KJ8 rainbow and I love my hand. I lead out and only the LP player to my direct right calls (the fish I talked about earlier -- he was a nice old guy but was obviously playing far from optimal, way loose and he didn't raise AK). Turn is a 6 (still no flush draw) and I lead out again. He raises! Well, I raise him back after checking the board for a straight possibility, and he puts in the fourth bet. At this point, I just call, and start thinking about what he could have. I've also never seen him go real crazy with a draw, so I figure he has two pair or a set. I just don't see KK since he didn't raise pre-flop, yet I've seen him raise most big pairs (and K4o). By the time the river, a 7 hits, I realize that I most likely have him slaughtered and the 7 can't help him. So I lead out. He raises, and I three bet, which he just calls. I show my JJ and he gives that long look that lets me know I won. He mucks, I speculate that he had a low set, and he confirms that he had a set of 6s. Ouch. Anyway, this hand is notable because I both narrowed down his holdings to make a strange value bet on the end, yet I also played it strangely and won the maximum. If I put in the fifth bet on the turn I'd have to think he'd slow down and just call the river too. The stop then lead out (which I'll sometimes do with a monster hand out of position) seemed to confuse him enough to put in another raise and earn me two extra bets, but I have no idea why it worked. Thoughts?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

On calling w/connectors and 1-gappers from button or SB. I'd say for GC, that's a definite yes when 5 are already in. If you're playing 8/16, you're getting half price or 11-1 odds, so you'd be sick not to call in the SB. From the button, you also have to call w/5-1 bc you have position and counts for a lot. You play well post-flop so you can play these hands profitably, IMO.