Pocket Pairs against short-stackers

WVHillbilly

WVHillbilly

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FR cash games.

It seems that every table I'm on now has at least 2 or 3 guys buying in for 20 to 30 bbs, looking to double-up and run. So how do you play against the SS? If you're in LP with a medium pp (say 88) do you call a raise from an EP SS (even though you're not getting anything close to the odds you need to set mine)? What's your range for calling a normal raise from a SS? What's your range for calling an open shove from a SS (understanding that these players are generally tight and not doing this with any 2)?

I honestly hate playing these guys. You've never got any implied odds to play against them and if you double them up they generally run away from the table. If you take their $$ it's never enough to cover the value you lose playing against them (or by choosing to not play because of the lack of implied odds).

So help me out here. What's the best way to play against the SS?
 
ChuckTs

ChuckTs

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Goddamn shortstackers...

Are we talking the regulars, ie the 7/5/inf nits who basically wait for monsters or the guys who are taking $20 shots at 100nl playing 30/2/1 or something?

The difference is huge.

Nits: Generally I'll go ahead and limp along, though when a 7/5 nit limps from utg FR, you have to assume he's trapping most of the time, and so we can't really stack when we flop an overpair.

Fish: I think usually I'm happy to raise it up and get it AIPF or on safe-ish flops. A lot of the time guys will limp-call with A5 and donk-call AI or ch-r AI on a J52 flop for example, so usually, barring an AKx or TJQ type flop, I'm usually happy to stack with 88 against the fish.

Pretty general question of course, too...
 
WVHillbilly

WVHillbilly

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Yeah, I know it was a general question so general answers are ok.

I definitely see both the "I only play 4 hands" nits and the "Hey sure hope I get lucky cause this $5 is 1/2 my roll" fish. It just seems like playing against a few of these SS hinders my ability to play (especially small and medium pocket pairs). Maybe I've been too unwilling to get involved with them because the payoff is never there.

Here is the specific hand that was the impetus behind this post:
full tilt poker, $0.10/$0.25 NL Hold'em Cash Game, 7 Players
LeggoPoker.com - Hand History Converter

UTG+1: $17.10
MP: $5 (12/8/2)
CO: $4.20
BTN: $22.20
SB: $11.45
Hero (BB): $27.65
UTG: $32.55

Pre-Flop: 8:club: 8:diamond: dealt to Hero (BB)
2 folds, MP raises to $1, 4 folds

Results: $0.60 Pot
MP mucked and WON $0.60 (+$0.35 NET)

So basically I've just folded 88 in the big blind, because this damned shortstacker just put 20% of his "stack" in from MP. Anyway, it just pissed me off :D

Is folding there +EV?
 
ChuckTs

ChuckTs

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We can probably assume his pfr will reflect his range pretty accurately unless he's got a huge/tiny attempt to steal % (which will mean that he's raising a tighter/looser range in that position).

So %8 = roughly {88+,ATs+,KTs+,QJs,AJo+}. 88 vs that range is about a 60/40 dog, so factoring in some other things:

-the fact that if he's a 'normal' player he'll be tighter in EP meaning we're even worse than 60/40
-the fact that we have nowhere near enough implied odds to set mine
-him probably committing himself with overcards in most situations (ie no FE)

It probably leads to a fold pf.

Just by looking at it without going into deep analysis you generally just don't want to get involved OOP with a vulnerable hand like this that isn't in great shape against his range anyways, so ya I fold on the fly.
 
WVHillbilly

WVHillbilly

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I agree it's a fold, but if he wasn't a shortstacking bastard, it's the kind of hand I love to call a hope to hit my set against.

About 20 hands after this one he got all-in preflop with 77 (against a donk with 33). The sevens held and he left the table with slightly more than twice his buy-in.
 
PokerVic

PokerVic

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Playing against these short-buy nits is a big part of the low stakes ring games on poker stars because at certain times of the day, 25-50% of the table can be made up of them.

Small pocket pairs: I usually toss them when raised by these guys.
High pocket pairs: I'll gladly put them all in with JJ or higher, unless my notes say he's really tight.
Strong aces: This is what I'll often call with, but only with position. So many of the short-buys once they choose a hand, are pot committed. They'll bet 3-4xBB preflop, then push no matter what comes out on the flop. Easy to felt them when you hit.

As for tossing the small pairs, I tell myself that I'll make the money back by raising their BB at every opportunity. :)
 
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