duminică, 23 aprilie 2006

Tuesday April 25th 2006 sniffing out

Tuesday, April 25th, 2006: Sniffing Out The Bluff

CURRENT HOURLY RATE:  $29.83
Fired up two 15/30 games this morning, the 3/6 game running had an avg pot size of 22 bucks, so I avoided it like the plague (for those who don’t know, ideally in an Omaha hi/lo table you want there to be an avg pot of 10BB’s, although 7-8 isn’t too bad either)
As usual, I started down for the session.  It really stunk when one of the tables had a few seats open and three players sitting out, so we were playing 4-handed.  I decided to press on though, since Party seems hell bent on running lots of 6-max tables, and this would be good practice (should the full-ring games ever die out completely and I have to adjust)
Eventually more players filtered into the table and it got running again, which was nice.  Few limpers, I raise with A/A/3/Q suited in MP, the blind who’s a good player calls as do a few others.  The flop is 8/9/10 with two diamonds (not my suit).  The blind fires a bet, an EP limper calls.
This flop is not good for me, but the pot is large enough that I pay the 15 bucks and take one off to see if I can snag a low draw on the turn.  Sure enough, an offsuit 4 hits the turn.  The blind bets, the EP limper calls, I call.  The river is another 10.  The blind bets, the limper folds.  Now I have to think.
Did the blind hit the straight on the flop?  Perhaps the blind was betting on the come with a flush draw?  The blind is a good player from the stats I have on him, so he probably knows that my raise with an A/A/x/x holding, so he could be making a play.
The pot is over 250 bucks from what I recall, so it’s another 30 for me to see what he has.  I call.  He has A/2/3/6 and was bluffing the whole way with the naked Ace of diamonds, HA!  Caught you mofo!  I almost laid down, but the pot was so large I looked him up and it paid off.  Then again, he could’ve just as easily had the straight or two pair or a set and he would’ve gotten another bet out of me. 
The reason I called is because I figured he was betting on the flush draw that never hit, little did I know he was bluffing that draw with just the Ace of diamonds in the hole.  It was a good attempt, but it didn’t pan out for him.
So, I ended the hour-long two-tabling session up $50.  I’ll take it.  I’d be psyched if I could make $50/hr all the time.  It just sucks when you lose $150 and then you make it back small amounts at a time.  A profit is a profit though, so I’ll continue plugging along.
It’s interesting to see how some of the lower stakes tables are tighter and less profitable and the higher stakes have some real loosey-goosey types.

Monday, April 17th, 2006: More 10/20 Omaha hi/lo fun

CURRENT HOURLY RATE:  $29.75
Tonight I hit two 10/20 games, a 3/6 and a 2/4.  At one point, my $500 was up to $650 at one of the 10/20 games, but I wound up limping in EP with a good hand and being against only the blinds, flopped a good draw, got check-raised by a solid player on the flop and chased my draw and never got there.
So, instead of ending the session up about $125 for 15 minutes of work, it was only $48.  Still, a profit is a profit, and I can’t expect to win every hand, so ‘dems da’ breaks I suppose.
The other 10/20 game I wound up $13, the first was I left up $74, so I lost money at the 2/4 and 3/6 games, go figure.  I can’t beat the low limits, just the high limits, heh heh.
I have noticed that sometimes there are much tighter nitty players at the lower limit tables than at the higher limits (guess some people have larger wallets than skill levels)
Anyway, it was my fifth profitable session in a row, so that feels nice.  After going through constant losing sessions for a lot of the month, it’s comforting when things start going my way.
As usual, the tables started breaking up or only having three players to a flop, so it wasn’t really very profitable for me after that and I got out.  These hit n’ run sessions have been cropping up much more frequently now, but I don’t mind not having to sit for 3 hours to win 100 bucks, so that’s cool.

Monday April 24th 2006 its all about

Monday, April 24th, 2006: It's All About Scooping

CURRENT HOURLY RATE:  $29.80
Just bought Galactic Civilizations II:  Dread Lords and it’s been eating up waaaaaay too much of my time.  Fun game, although you’ll want to get the patches.  Kind of the Masters of Orion that should have been (the sequel that is)
Enough about my gaming geekness, on to Pokah!
So, tonight I’m checking out the 10/20 and 15/30 tables and I see that they have average pots in the 200-300 dollar range, just my style.  I open them up and get on the wait lists while I observe the happenings.
I watch as one 15/30 table builds a pot up to about 900 bucks, holy crap, sign me up baby!  It wound up being split between just two of the five players, so they each scored over 400 bucks, in one pot!  Schweet!
Anyway, I get myself onto a 10/20 table and then a 15/30, but nothing is going right.  Crap cards, then the 15/30 table starts to break up with people sitting out, I get out before the blind hits me again and avoid the short-handed nightmare.
I get into another 15/30 game though and it’s going eh, down about 50 bucks.  So anyway, overall I’m down a few hundred bucks and I’ve just about started playing.  I keep having to fold my blinds against pre-flop aggression and keep missing flops with my good hands.
But, remember, this is a game of patience, and scooping, and my luck turns rather quickly at the 10/20 and 15/30 games I’m playing.
First is the 15/30 table.  I’m dealt A/A/6/8 suited after one limper for $15, so I raise to $30.  A tight player in the blind calls, as does the limper.  The flop is 3/4/4 with two of my suit.  Checked to me, I bet 15, the tight player in the blind calls, the limper check-raises, ugh.  I call.  The turn is my beautiful Ace, but a better low is possible, so I just call his bet.  The river is a blank, he bets, I raise and he calls and I scoop a $364 pot, w00t!
Oh yeah, his hand?  He limped in EP with 3/3/10/Q, flopped the underfull and I outdrew him on the turn with the full house plus he had no low possibilities.  Thank you donkey masta!
At the 10/20 game I raise with a A/A/4/8 suited and the big blind defends with A/Q/Q/K double suited, fair enough.  The flop is 2/2/5, he check-calls my bet?  The turn is a 5, he check-calls my bet.  Checks the 9 on the river and I scoop another pot!
So, in just two hands I dig myself out of the hole and finish the 30-minute session up almost $80 profit.  I REALLY want to play those 15/30 games more often, they can get quite juicy.  But sitting there for just a few rounds you can be down hundreds of dollars depending on how things go.  Takes some getting used too.

Tuesday April 18th 2006 eking out

Tuesday, April 18th, 2006: Eking out a slight victory
CURRENT HOURLY RATE:  $29.72
A/3/3/10 and I limp, another player limped with A/4/7/9.  Flop is 2/5/K with two spades (neither of us has that draw)  He check-calls my bet.  The turn pairs the board with Kings and he check-calls again (now he’s picked up the nut flush draw on a paired board).  The river is, of course, a Queen of hearts, so he backs into his flush, I don’t make my low and he check-calls my bet and scoops the $142 pot.  He doesn’t make the flush, and I’d scoop.
Guy limps in EP with A/4/5/6 and I raise with A/A/2/2 suited.  He calls out of position, the flop is magical (for him) as it comes Q/6/6, he bets, I raise, he calls.  Turn is a 6, giving me 6’s full of Aces and him Quads, and he check-raises me and gets another bet out of me on the river.  Gotta love those setup flops.  Usually when you flop Aces-up heads-up you’re in good shape.
But, I wind up pulling out a mediocre victory at the 15/30 table and the three 10/20 games I’ve got going, up $42.50 for a half-hours effort.  Doesn’t erase the earlier loss, but it’s a profit nonetheless.

Tuesday, April 18th, 2006: Trying out

Tuesday, April 18th, 2006: Trying out 15/30 Omaha hi/lo
CURRENT HOURLY RATE:  $29.78
This morning I deposited another $500 into my Party account.  They’re running a 20% up to $100 bonus, and I figured I’d take advantage.  Just need to play 1,000 raked hands in order to clear it (four-tabling usually is about 200 hands/hr, although they’re not all raked unless you’re at the higher limits)
Fired up my first 15/30 game and stuck around for a few rounds (10 minutes).  My $750 buy-in was down to $690 in short order, but after taking half of a multi-way pot I was up to almost $800.  Wound up folding my J/2/4/5 and seeing a J/J/3 flop and then a 4 on the turn and someone else scooped the 70 some odd dollars in the pot.  But those type of hands are losers from EP in the long-run.
I left with a profit of about $45 after 10 minutes.  Another hit n’ run (as usual, the table was mostly going 2-3 handed to the flop, which just isn’t good for my strong holdings which usually require multi-way action to make them more profitable)

Tuesday April 25th 2006 getting back.

Tuesday, April 25th, 2006: Getting Back On The Horse In A Big Way
CURRENT HOURLY RATE:  $30.06
Holy schnikes batman!  15 minutes at TWO tables (10/20 and 15/30) and I’m up over $450!
At the 10/20 table I flop the nut low (unbreakable) plus the 6-high straight, while two of my opponents both have the nut low.  So with capping on all streets and a fourth player sticking around for some of the action, I split the low half of the pot three ways, but I scoop the high half of the pot, SCORE!
Then at the 15/30 table I have an A/2/K/10 hand suited in EP and limp and a bunch of players go to the flop.  We’re FIVE-HANDED ON THE RIVER!  That’s just crazy, usually you’re heads-up or three-handed at most.  But there was tons of raising and capping on all the various streets by donkeys with non-nut holdings who just had no clue.  If the river was a Jack I would’ve scooped the whole shebang.  Instead, I had just the nut low, but I was the only one out of all five players who held it, so I took that whole part of the pot, and one guy had a weak straight that was good for the other half, holly molly!
Man, did I need that to get me feeling better after the session earlier today.  Thank you poker gods!

Sunday, April 16th, 2006: Report On Saturdays 2+2 Game

Saturday, April 15th, 2006
2+2 Central Massachusetts Challenge #3
$100 buy-in with $20 bounties and prop/side bets galore!
I was first to arrive at Dan’s, and promptly made my way to the facilities to ensure they were properly “prepared” for the arriving guests.  Luckily for everyone, Dan had some Cottenelle ™ Moist Wipes, which saved my neighbors at the table from the deadly “Stank-Ass”
A poker-player-lookinish fellow drove by the house, and Dan and I were trying to figure out if it was Dcasper70 or ZenMusician (my vote was for Zen, since the guy looked “musicy”)
Sure enough, I was correct, and the rest of the players began to show, although a few no shows reduced the field to just 17 players.
Starting a bit later than our 1pm schedule, action got underway on two tables with 17 participants.  I was seated at table #1, and proceeded to LAG it up, raising in EP with 4/8 of clubs and other trash and showing down various hands.  I wanted to get everyone to loosen up and have fun, and then I’d switch to tight-aggro and take advantage.
The first victim was the ever aggressive Ghazban, seated directly to my left.  Pre-flop I believe Daryn raised to 175, Dcasper70 just called, and I folded my J/7 of spades.  Ghazban re-raised and Daryn folded, but Casper stuck around.
With an all-spade flop of K/3/4 (something like that) I lamented folding my hand, as there was plenty of action.  The turn brought an offsuit 10, and Ghazban check-raised all-in.  Unfortunately for him, his A/K offsuit was now crushed by the pocket 10’s (with one spade) of Casper, who called and sent Ghazban to the rail.
Toro would be next to go on Table 2, and I would personally eliminate Daryn in 15th place on table 1.  Pre-flop he pushes all-in short-stacked with Q/5 of hearts, I find A/K and short-stacked as well, repush.  By the river Daryn hits his 5, but it gives me the flush and I send him packing.
King Jackoff and Hyde from Table 2 would be next to go, and then Suited Duece and 27offsuit at Table 1.
This brought us to the final table, where Slow Play Ray limped in EP with pocket 7’s short-stacked.  Dcasper70 also limped with A/J of clubs.  The flop was 7/8/10 but all clubs, and all the money went in.  The 9 of clubs on the turn completed the straight flush for Dcasper, and Ray was drawing dead, not even quads could save him.  He rivered the 6 of clubs to also make a straight flush, but it was still no good.
Ghettorat, who had accumulated a huge stack at Table 2, would be out in 9th place.  Raising from the SB with pocket 10’s, I pushed him all-in from the BB with A/8 of hearts, figuring him for a steal.  He insta-called, but my suckout skills were too great, and the Ace on the turn moved him over to the side cash games.
I missed an opportunity to eliminate Myrtle.  With 15-16K in chips, I was UTG and noticed that KilgoreTrout, our host was in the BB.  I commented how I’d have to raise and steal his blinds this hand with any two cards, perhaps without even looking.
Myrtle replied that if I raised he would come over the top all-in blind.  When the cards were dealt, I told him I’d have to look now, and I found pocket 2’s.  I min-raised from 400 to 800.  First, I wanted to keep things fun and lively, and my crazy antics and weird plays were sure accomplishing that.
In addition, I wanted to see if he honestly had the balls to push all-in without looking.  And, I figured since he knew I looked, and I was still raising, he might fear I have a premium hand that I’d call his push with.
It didn’t work, as he pushed in blind for about 8K total.  Two LP players seemed quite distraught, and they liked their hands and wanted to play, but didn’t feel they could take the risk.  Folded to me, and I eventually chickened out, although I seriously considered calling.
We ran the flop, and Myrtles J/4 of diamonds would have hit a beautiful A/K/7 flop of diamonds, but the turn 2 and river 7 would’ve provided me with the runner-runner suckout to eliminate him and move up to 25K in chips and have a commanding stack at that point.
Unfortunately, my failure to call would be the death of me (about 60% of the players agreed with my fold, and 40% thought I should’ve called his all-in blind play with any pair, even the 2’s). 
I have about 15-16K in chips, Ilya pushed from UTG short-stacked for about 4-5K total.  I called in LP with A/Q offsuit, but he had Aces UTG, ouch.  A flop of 10/J/Q gave me hope, but there was no suckout or split, and I was down to about 9-10K in chips.
My final hand I would raise pre-flop with A/K, Myrtle asked my chip count, announced all-in, and I called and didn’t suck out against his pocket 10’s and was sent packing in 8th place.
ZenMusician’s A/9 would hit Crunchsters pocket 10’s for a 7th place finish.  Ilya’s 10/10 was no match for A/Q of Casper with a Queen on the river.  Kdog failed to defend his title from the first event, finishing on the money bubble with 10/J against pocket Queens.
Myrtle sucked out in the money with A/2 against Caspers A/J suited (on the turn, Casper had the nut flush draw plus was way ahead, but the wrong 2 hit the river and Myrtle doubled up)
Despite this, Myrtle would finish in 4th place for $170.  Crunchster would be out in 3rd for $255.  And heads-up play between Kilgore Trout and Dcasper70 was almost stopped when they started discussing a chop.
A number of us got very loud and demanded they had to determine a winner, and not be such pussies and chop, so they chopped most of the money and agreed to play the rest (good thing, I was about to start threatening them with ankle biting, I can be one mean midget)
With $425 for 2nd and $850 for first, there was a good amount of money up for grabs.  I’m not sure how they chopped it up or who won the additional money, as I left after an hour of cash games.
I did, however, clean house at the cash games.  Sitting down, I asked what everyone bought in for, I was told $100.  I promptly announced “then I’ll buy in for $80”, which immediately got everyone upset.
We were playing 2/4 deuce to seven lowball.  A game I haven’t played before.  I learned quickly and promptly won three pots in a row, including one very large pot where I had 2/3/4/5/7 after my 2nd draw with everyone betting into me (ship it!)  One of my opponents caught 2/3/4/5/6 by the river, but straights are no good and I already had the nuts, so best he could do was tie, which didn’t happen obviously)
As more players were eliminated from the tourney, they joined the cash game, ruining the lowball game and initiating our playing HORSE.  I hate limit hold em, and promptly saw my J/J raise pre-flop lose to Ghazbans A/7 when he hit a 7 on the flop and then on the river.
Still, I was undaunted, and made sure to let everyone know a few key things:
1.  I’m primarily a cash game player, I do it for part of my living
2.  I never make any money at Dan’s tournament, but I always profit in the cash game
3.  I am, THE Triple Threat
4.  Any games where junk wins, I will win, since I’m good at playing junk (i.e. the lowball and also razz games)
I proceeded to slaughter them at Razz, hold my own in 7-stud and stud hi/lo, get killed in limit hold em and not really get any good hands in my primary game, Omaha hi/lo.
After an hours work, I had won $46 for my time.  Somehow my departure resulted in the majority of players also leaving the game (guess they thought I was the fish, despite my making $46/hr off of them at one table of 2/4)
It was great to see old faces, and to meet some new 2+2ers as well.  Hopefully my constant yapping didn’t give anyone TOO big of a headache.  I just don’t like to sit and be glum and quiet.
Had a great time, kinda upset I didn’t call Myrtles blind push, but it was for half my chips, I had only invested 800 chips and had to call something like 8 grand to at best coin flip against him (or perhaps be behind if he had suited connectors).  He would’ve flopped the flush and I would’ve been ticked, then I would’ve runner-runnered the boat and been excited.  It could have been the hand of the match, but unfortunately I didn’t take the risk and Myrtle came back in the end to haunt me.  Dunno how I can sleep tonight without seeing those pocket 2’s.