Shortstack Strategy

Warrior1961

Warrior1961

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Hi everyone. I am not a cash player, in fact I am a rookie and I am just playing freerolls and microlimit sit and go. But I have the idea of playing cash in the not too distant future and I remember that a few years ago (I played poker for a while and left it) there were some poker schools that suggested the shortstack strategy entering the table with 10 BB. I also learned that many players protested this issue and the halls banned this situation (I do not know the reason) and today you can not enter a table with that amount of blinds. My question is: does the shortstack strategy work? Remember that I am very novice. Thank you very much everyone for your response and sorry for my rustic english.
 
xOneCoolHandx

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Hi everyone. I am not a cash player, in fact I am a rookie and I am just playing freerolls and microlimit sit and go. But I have the idea of playing cash in the not too distant future and I remember that a few years ago (I played poker for a while and left it) there were some poker schools that suggested the shortstack strategy entering the table with 10 BB. I also learned that many players protested this issue and the halls banned this situation (I do not know the reason) and today you can not enter a table with that amount of blinds. My question is: does the shortstack strategy work? Remember that I am very novice. Thank you very much everyone for your response and sorry for my rustic english.


I am not a fan of a short stack strategy for cash games, especially at 10 BBs. If you think about it, if you are playing $1/2 NLHE then 10 BBs is $20. I have seen many people open for that amount in a lot of games. That means that you would have to either 1. get lucky with any random hand or 2. Put it all in any hand that you want to play. The same holds true even if there is a more standard raise of 2.5x the BB (which in most small limit games is never the initial raise). If the first raise is $5 then your 3 bet to $20 is pretty standard and is going to get called often. Especially in cash games because the calling ranges are more open than tournaments (because players can just rebuy). Essentially you are either waiting for a premium hand to jam, which does not come that often so you are blinding away your stack in the meantime OR you are just jamming in your chips with marginal hands and hoping to get lucky. Neither is a good strategy.

If you watch the pros play on shows like High Stakes Poker or other cash games, you will notice that a lot of players will buy in well above the minimum. They know that stack size is very important and having everyone else covered gives you an advantage over all the other players because you can put them all in on any given hand.

If you insist on trying out a short stack approach, I would not do it with fewer than 20-30 BBs. This size stack can at least give you enough leverage to put pressure on your opponent and you will not blind away so fast.

Good luck.
 
Warrior1961

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Thanks a lot for your comment. Greetings.
 
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fundiver199

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Well as you say buying in very short is not even an option any more, since most poker sites have increased the minimum to at least 40BB. Also kind of the whole point of playing cash games rather than tournaments is to play with deeper stacks, since it allow much more play on the turn and river.

The higher minimum was introduced, because short stacked players are annoying for other players at a cash table. They can just go all in before the flop, which takes all the complexity out of the game.
 
Warrior1961

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Thanks a lot for your comment. Greetings.
 
jesuisjesus

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As far as I understand now , short stack is 50 big blinds. Good luck can always turn to you if you really want to. :D
 
mkdrummey

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I remember PKR used to not have a minimum buy in at their micro cash tables. The number of times players would sit down with 2c obviously just out from a freeroll min cash it was hilarious
 
antonis32123

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I know , most say that those that buy less than 100 blinds in a cash game/table (or they don't top up their balance to 100 blinds when they lose some blinds on a hand ) are bad players , more or less . I agree . I am a bad player myself (although I prefer saying I am a not good player lol) , but at least that way , by buying only 60 blinds , I have control of my losses when I make bad decisions , which is not so unusual unfortunatelly .
Also in 2nl (at least the 2nl 9max zoom or in the past the 9max 5nl zoom ) many players call shoves if you have 30 , 40 or 50 blinds , so I get paid for my AA or KK . Many times this has shaved me , although I have the bad habit of shoving crazy hands with 25-30 hands trying so mad/desperatelly to win my blinds/$$ back , have to stop this .....I will also try playing some normal cash tables , not zoom in the near future :)
 
Warrior1961

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Thank you very much for your comments. Sometimes when I read terms like "zoom" (I have no idea what it is) I notice how much I need to learn in poker.
 
Refinado Tom

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I think the best strategy is to play few hands and more aggressive preflop.
All in if necessary.
 
Warrior1961

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Thank you very much for your advice my friend.
 
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fundiver199

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Just for the record 40-50BB is usually referred to as a cap stack. With a cap stack there is still room for a preflop raise and bets on both flop, turn and river. There is not room for a raise anywhere though, since a raise will just mean, that the chips go in faster. A cap stack change the way, you play, and mean, some hands go up or down in value. For instance small pairs often need to be folded, since you are not getting good odds to setmine, but on the other side you can often stack off an overpair or top pair without making a big mistake if any.

A short stack on the other hand is usually defined as 20BB or less. With that kind of stack a 3-bet preflop will always be a jam, and as stacks get even shorter, open jamming also become a viable strategy. A lot of tournament play is like this, but because of the minimum buyin, its not a big thing in cash games any more.
 
antonis32123

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The higher minimum was introduced, because short stacked players are annoying for other players at a cash table. They can just go all in before the flop, which takes all the complexity out of the game.

:D:D:D:D:D , well truly can't say I really care at the micros , if sites allow it , then it's not my problem . Party doesn't allow it any more , can't play there , I am an unwanted outcast there LOL :D:D:D



.......
Also in 2nl ............. many players call shoves if you have 30 , 40 or 50 blinds , so I get paid for my AA or KK . Many times this has shaved me .........

:confused::confused::confused::confused::eek::eek::eek::eek:

:evil:
 
fletchdad

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To learn to play some games, a SS strategy might be ok short term (but I dont think so). But with a 10BB stack, you have no "muscle" behind, and other players will see you as a beginner (probably, if they pay attention) and target you - I do this. And, you cant win more than 10BB per player in a pot, which is just kind of silly to me, no offense intended.

Playing deep stack needs a different approach then 100BB, but in my opinion, you should ALWAYS have a full stack of 100BB. Activate your auto-top up if you play online.

However you do it, good luck!!
 
Igor Popadyk

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maybe someone will throw a short-stack push-fold table and that's it
 
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zhilipp

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I actually add some chips if I get too short stacked because i feel like you can put more preassure on your opponents with more money.
 
Danjwarburton

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The higher minimum was introduced, because short stacked players are annoying for other players at a cash table. They can just go all in before the flop, which takes all the complexity out of the game.

This is why I myself am looking more into shortstacking. If a player can find an enormous edge which annoys the hell out of others causing them to tilt and screw up as much as possible then this is something I am ALL OVER! Period.

"Don't hate, appreciate and immitate.... "

If it works, and works well, against you... you start using it!!!
 
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fundiver199

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This is why I myself am looking more into shortstacking. If a player can find an enormous edge which annoys the hell out of others causing them to tilt and screw up as much as possible then this is something I am ALL OVER! Period.

Sure but with the 40BB minimum buyin, which most poker sites have implemented these days, you cant even do short stacking. 40BB is not a short stack, its called a cap stack. If you open jam 40BB, that is just bad poker, and while it might annoy some opponents, you will get your ass completely handed to you in the long run.
 
fletchdad

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This is why I myself am looking more into shortstacking. If a player can find an enormous edge which annoys the hell out of others causing them to tilt and screw up as much as possible then this is something I am ALL OVER! Period.

"Don't hate, appreciate and immitate.... "

If it works, and works well, against you... you start using it!!!


In theory, your attitude is understandable. But in practice, not at all.

It may annoy other players to SS and do stuff like go AI before the flop with a SS, you are just playing bad poker for the most part. You will be annoying the other players, but you won't get an advantage out of it. Kinda like annoying a tennis opponent by cutting off your own arm and dripping blood on the ball. It will annoy your opponent, sure, but........

You mentioned having an edge. You give up most of any edge you have (from a poker skill point of view) if you play short, unless you really understand a SS strategy, and IMHO, even then..... meh.....
 
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Danjwarburton

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Well a few extra ways you benefit from:

People just like yourself, a fellow player of many years, have this innate biased towards anyone who doesn't "fit in" to what they believe about poker. You seem to believe shortstackers or those with a capped stack who don't play 100bb poker are bad players. This causes even experienced players like you to call allin shoves when you are behind and try weird and wonderful things giving the shorty no respect.

You would be surprised as well the money made on the flop and turn went multi-tabling autopiloters attempt to call flop with a draw when they do not have the right implied odds because the active stack is far less. They are used to 100bb stacks and autopilot what to do with a good draw postflop. This is a huge edge as you often end up putting them to the test so quickly on the turn and they don't fancy calling with 18% chance to hit by the river. Players spew off like crazy in this spot!

There are some creative options shortstacking and it can find a big edge vs experienced regs who have perfected the 100bb game. Don't overlook it.
 
ventrolloquist

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Hi everyone. I am not a cash player, in fact I am a rookie and I am just playing freerolls and microlimit sit and go. But I have the idea of playing cash in the not too distant future and I remember that a few years ago (I played poker for a while and left it) there were some poker schools that suggested the shortstack strategy entering the table with 10 BB. I also learned that many players protested this issue and the halls banned this situation (I do not know the reason) and today you can not enter a table with that amount of blinds. My question is: does the shortstack strategy work? Remember that I am very novice. Thank you very much everyone for your response and sorry for my rustic english.


In my opinion a bigger stack gives you more room to maneuver and more options. A short stack makes your decisions more binary and easy (at 10bb it's basically all-in or fold). You are at a pretty severe disadvantage with a stack that short and everyone knows you will be going all-in with a wide range. I don't think you can even play any cash games with a stack that small. I think 40 is the smallest at least online.

I would choose the former. I would also have auto re-buy on so my stack doesn't get short.
 
Eric Salvador

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If you’re looking to play cash I’d forget the short stack strategy. You should focus studying deep stack poker. The reason why people use the short stack is to decrease variance. This can all be avoided if you’re properly bankrolled and have a good base of studying cash game strategy. Look to keep the max amount of cash on the table at all times.
 
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