Limit question: middle pair on semi-dry board

J

jeffred1111

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Not a particular hand, since this would go in the HA section, but a situation that comes often enough to be bothering.

.10/.20 FL HL

We are in the CO with Tc8c. Nobody is in and our image is tight so a blind steal is in order. We raise and only the BB calls, probably defending his blind. Villain is your typical too loose preflop and postflop (sees more than 40% of flops and has a low agression factor).

Flop comes 9c8h2s. Villain checks. We value bet our pair (since we could very well be facing a drawing hand such as overcards, straight draw, etc.). BB calls. Turn is Jd. Checking in this spot is terrible since we are essentially giving away a free-card, but a hand that us beat will probably call anyway. On the other hand, we are still probably ahead (55 to 65% methinks) at this point since we have paired and have outs. We semi-bluff and bet it. BB calls. River is 3h. Now what? Do we bet here or do we opt for the cheap showdown by check/calling.

Our hand is somewhat fair but it's nothing to write home about. Villain range is still huge. What do we think about in this situation apart from the fact that he hasn't shown strength ? I feel this is a huge hole in my game since I may very well miss on BB by checking and having villain show me AK or a busted straight draw.
 
1548

1548

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In limit if you put in like that and still unsure always just check down . Any pot is a win but getting raised on the river puts alot of stress on yourself that is unneeded
 
J

jeffred1111

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Yes, but if we go with our read that we are, say a 60/40 favortie on the turn (since that last card is clearly a blank), don't we gain a BB everytime we bet and get called by a worse hand ? If we were to run the scenario 100 times, we would win .40 cents more 60 times and lose it 40 times, for a EV of 4$. Plus, if we end up even when we get raised (because villain is a complete fool, he knows we have a hand and are unlikely to get pushed off the pot by a bluff at this time): we would've called his bet anyway and lost that BB ?

Even if we call, there's a slight percentage, say 10% that villain is bluffing, 30% he has a worse hand than us, and 60% he has us beat. So we figure that even if we call his raise, we are in the black, huh ? Secret answer, no.

We win 2BB 30% of the time (0,6BB), lose 2BB 70% (1,2BB) , win one BB 60% of the time (0,6BB) and lose one 40% of the time (0.4BB) for a -EV of 0.4BB. So, if we go by our read, it is better to check and call, than it is to bet here. This discounts any fold by villain. He doesn't seem to want to do so anyway.

On the other hand, this is all well and good if we approx. our chances of winning, but in this situation, how do we do so, as our odds clearly dictactes what we should do (if we were a 70/30% favorite, maybe betting would become the best option). I can see that there's no definitive answer to my last question, but any pointers, any thoughts ?
 
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F Paulsson

F Paulsson

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"Calls down with A-hi from BB vs steal" is one of the things I tend to put notes in about. Check this time and find out what he's been calling with. If it's a busted draw, he'd have folded anyway. And that's the thing: You don't miss value from a busted draw, since a busted draw will fold if you bet. You will miss value from AK, but AK is a very small part of his range (especially given that he will likely 3-bet it preflop).

You need to be ahead ~55% of the times that you're called to bet this river in position. I don't think you are. I think you're ahead 55% of the time, don't get me wrong, just not 55% of the times that he calls your bet. This is a check for me. If I realize that he's calling me down light, I'll make the bet the next time.
 
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jeffred1111

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Thank you. I agree that with villain calling out bets (and him being passive), we aren't 55% ahead here. We get to the free showdown and note carefully what he called with. My FL hold 'em is improving, but it really starts to breakdown because of lack of experience in situation like this.

That and I'm way too tight in middle position behind a raiser. The typical game is very loose, what with players raising with almost any AXo and I have trouble playing hands in this spot that aren't from group 1 or 2 (Sklansky suggest group 3 as well, but with caution). AQo even gets layed down sometimes in this spot.

Well, better to be too tight than too loose.
 
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