Little Limpin Rant #1
I've recently moved up in stakes, not by much just a bit but I've noticed a marginal difference in the caliber of play. Seems that these players are a little tougher, more aggressive and they will play back at you. One of the things that I've observed more at these stakes than at the lower stakes that I'm accustomed to playing is there is a lot more limp/raising going on.
What is limp raising? To simplify it, limp raising is when you limp (usually from an early position like, under the gun (UTG) or in the Small Blind with the intention of re-raising your opponent. This is an effective strategy against aggressive players in creating larger pots, trapping you opponents and inducing bluff strategies with the specific purpose of making it difficult for your opponents to range your hands. Alarm bells go off when I see a limper in early position smooth call a raise but the sirens scream & call the paramedics when that limper re-raises. Right away you think," this guy has got a monster, probably aces" right? In most cases you are correct.
The limp raise is to be successfully used only under the right conditions and they are: 1.Position, you are in an early position to limp That you have aggressive opponents to act ahead of your and that they are guaranteed to bet. 2. You have premium hands 3. You are in the Small Blind, the table has folded to you & you know that the Big Blind will bet if you open limp. This will give you more value. 4. You have at least around 12-30 blinds. Exploit your opponents aggressive tendencies & use them to your advantage.
Limp-raising from early position can also be effective as a bluff. For example, you have J-10 of hearts UTG and you limp raise. Then, you either let the hand go to showdown, if you strike gold-awesome. If not, fold & "show the table your hand". Next time you limp raise with a premium hand like Kings or Aces. Your opponents will never know what hands your limp-raising with and it will be more difficult for them to believe you when you do have a hand. Opponents will not be able to range your limp-raising tendencies. You will also be able to see more flops when you're limping in EP with mediocre hands because opponents will be second guessing if you are going to raise their preflop bets.
Either way, the limp raise can be a very effective strategy but I would only recommend it if you are a strong, seasoned player. Otherwise, stick to what you are most comfortable with until you are ready to take it up a notch and step outside of your comfort zone. As with any move in poker, if you're met with resistance; greet it or beat it. Happy limping and Good luck