Limping to trap = Bad decision (a lesson)
Okay Chuck, this one's for you!
I've placed ITM a couple times this last week in a couple of freerolls
for some small b/r starters ($8, $4, $10).
I've been doing some serious studying here lately and trying to get my game up to par (not even close yet). I took those small b/r's and tried to make something out of them and typically did well playing in some micro cash games/micro sng's.
But what I want to teach you today is what ChuckT's has been trying to tell me for the past two weeks. I'm talking about limping into the pot.
Up front, I will let you know that all of those small b/r's are already gone. They are gone because of limping into the pot when I should have been raising. I started another thread last night complaining about getting sucked out on by crap hands that shouldn't have been there to begin with. Well, they probably wouldn't have had I entered the pot with a 3x-4x raise. Hands like 23o, 45o, 92s were killing my AKs and AQs hands.
I'm gonna post two scenarios here (both ended my b/r on either site) and I've pokerstoved them so you can see why it happened.
I hold: AcKc on the button, folded to me
Villain: 4d5h in the BB
Flop comes out: Jd7h6d
I cbet 75% of the pot here wanting to chase out drawing hands. But remember, I'm playing micros and he just flopped an OESD; he's not letting this go without a ton of pressure. He calls and the turn is a blank for both of us. Now I'm pissed at myself for not running him out pre flop and I'm scared of just about anything he's holding, so I check it to him. Luckily, he checks it back (but now he knows I really don't have a hand).
The river comes out a 3 and to me it looks like a blank. I've just created a situation where I'm so worried about what he's holding that I don't see the completed straight chance. And, he just checked back to me on the turn so I'm really leaning towards him holding an Ax. So I bet out half the pot hoping this will just all go away and he re-raises me all in. Now I'm pot committed and I have to call. He wins.
Okay, this is getting long so I won't post both hands right now. But this is a prime example of how making the mistake of not leading out with a raise in position with a good hand to do so led to a whole slew of mistakes. I could've have pushed him off that hand easily pre flop with a 4x raise and won 1BB. Instead, I chose to trap and lost a bunch of BB's.
This is not saying that you need to go maniacal and raise every hand that you plan to stay in the pot with, but instead think about all the things you need to consider before you push the call button. Things like...
-how many callers in front of you
-how many players left to act behind you
-effective stacks of all players (difference between your stack and theirs)
-how many players might fold to a 3x raise; 4x raise
-are there any aggro players behind you that might re-raise you
Just paying attention at the table will make all of those things easy to work out quickly. Then, with all those things considered, figure out what is your best option at the moment. Do you call/raise/fold?
I'm still learning this and I think it's finally sunk in enough to seriously cut back the times I just enter the pot with a call hoping to either see a flop cheaply or to trap an "unsuspecting" player. And I hope that not only do I get an ass chewing from better players, but that those better players add to anything I might have missed or explained wrong. But mostly, I want lesser players to learn from my mistake and stop fearing putting some chips out there to try to win some pots.