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That’s Poker!

Posted By Bill Baer On October 18, 2007 @ 1:27 am In MLB | No Comments

I just finished up a poker tournament on PokerStars lasting nearly 4 hours (starting at 10 PM EST). It was a measly 25-cent buy-in that saw 3,565 players sign up, and I played well and got lucky enough to place in the top 45, earning $1.59. Seems measly, but it’ll pay for 6 more of these tournaments.

I was completely card dead towards the end, not that that was much different than the rest of the tournament. My total statistics…

During current Hold’em session you were dealt 214 hands and saw flop:
– 13 out of 25 times while in big blind (52%)
– 5 out of 25 times while in small blind (20%)
– 14 out of 164 times in other positions (8%)
– a total of 32 out of 214 (14%)
Pots won at showdown – 7 of 10 (70%)
Pots won without showdown – 12

You can definitely say that I played tight, and there were a few spots where I would have cashed in big time had I been more aggressive, but I erred on the side of caution and it seems to have paid off. The killer was when I got pocket kings late in the tournament and got a walk (everyone else folded before I had a chance to make a play, as I was the big blind).

I got A-10 in first position with just over $20,000 in chips with $2,500/$5,000 blinds, so I decided to push all my chips in and hope for the best. Pocket red eights and K-10 of clubs both called me. I flopped an ace, but K-10 flopped his flush draw and made it on the river, knocking me out.

I was definitely card-dead, but I did get pocket aces early in the tournament and nearly tripled up.

From that pocket kings hand (when I got a walk) on, here were my hands (s = spades; h = hearts; c = clubs; d = diamonds):

Kh 7c (1,500 small blind, folded to a +3,000 raise)
Jc 3d
4s 2h
3c 3s (folded pre-flop)
Kd 9c
Ks 6s
7h 6h
8h 6d (4,000 big blind, folded to +8,000 raise)
10s 2d (2,000 small blind, folded and the big blind got a walk)
5s 3c
8h 2d
Qs 3s
Js 9h
Kh 3h
10c 5d
Qs 4s (4,000 big blind, folded to +19,000 raise)
Qd 7h (2,000 small blind, called the other 2,000 and folded to a +36,000 raise)
Ks 2d
Jc 4s
Ah 7d (could’ve made my move here and it would’ve worked out with a board that read: [5c 7c 5d Jd 7h], but I didn’t since someone raised an extra 4,000)
Qc Jc (also could have made a move here, but I opted to limp in and hit nothing on the flop, so it was a good thing I didn’t)
Ad 3c
5d 5s (I pushed all-in and no one called)
10s 3d (5,000 big blind, folded to a +10,000 raise)
10s 4s (2,500 small blind, folded to a +15,000 raise)
Jh 7d
Kc 8s
9h 7h
Kh 2s
Jc 9s
Ad 10h (my execution)

Throughout the late stages of the game, it felt I was getting raised in my blinds a lot, so I decided to check that out. From the above, we see that 6 of my 7 blinds featured a raise, with the other one being a fold to the big blind with 10s 2d.

But before that (going from most recent backwards)…

Ac 10h (1,500 small blind, folded to a +6,000 and +2,600 (short-stacker) raises)
Qs 10c (3,000 big blind, got to go all the way to the river with straight checks and folded to a $3,000 river bet)
10s 2c (1,000 small blind, folded to +4,000 raise)
Ks 5d (2,000 big blind, got to go to the turn and folded to a $6,000 turn bet)
10h 3c (800 small blind, folded to +2,700 raise)
Jc 3h (1,600 big blind, everyone else folded and I got a walk)
Ad 9d (800 small blind, got to see the flop and folded to a $1,600 flop bet)
5s 2s (1,600 big blind, everyone else folded and I got a walk)
9d 7h (600 small blind, folded to +2,400 raise)
10d 3c (1,200 big blind, folded to +9,700 raise)
Jd 2c (500 small blind, folded to +1,000 raise)
8c 5h (1,000 big blind, checked to the flop, flopped top pair of eights, bet $3,000, called a +211 raise, and won against Ad 3c with a board that read: [3d 7s 8h 5s] [5c])
4c 4s (500 small blind, folded to +5,700 raise)
Kd 7s (1,000 big blind, got to see the flop and folded to a $3,400 post-flop bet)
Js 2d (400 small blind, folded to +6,100 raise)
Kd 5d (800 big blind, folded to +8,900 raise)
Js 7d (400 small blind, folded to give the big blind a walk)
10s 3h (800 big blind, folded to +800 and +1600 raises)
As 8h (300 small blind, got to see the flop and folded to a $600 post-flop bet)
7d 2d (600 big blind, got to see the flop and folded to a $600 post-flop bet)
As 6c (300 small blind, got to see the flop and folded to a $600 post-flop bet)
Kd Qs (600 big blind, got to see the river and won a $3,400 pot on a board that read: [Tc Jd Kc 8d 2c])
8s 3h (200 small blind, folded pre-flop)
Kc 8c (400 big blind, got to see the flop, checked the flop, raised by $900 a $300 bet on the turn, raised $4,150 all in and won a $13,475 pot with a board that read: [2c Jc Ts 4c] [Tc])

That’s a good portion of the meaningful blinds. The results:

  • Folded 10 of 24 blinds to pre-flop raises (42%)
  • Saw the flop in 10 of 24 hands (42%)
  • Saw the turn in 5 of 24 hands (21%)
  • Saw the river in 4 of 24 hands (17%)
  • Won 5 of 24 hands (21%)
  • Was given a walk in 2 of 24 hands (8%)
  • The big blind (other than myself) got a walk in 1 of 24 hands (4%)

Of the hands I listed above, only my pocket 4’s and KQ (2 hands — 8%) would have been considered good hands, with A10, A9, A8, A6, and possibly Q10 (5 hands — 21%) being considered marginal hands.

So, I was, I think more unlucky than usual in my blinds, both with the hands I was given and with the pre-flop raising.

Nonetheless, I’m happy with my finish. It’s almost 2:30 AM now and I have to get up at 7:30 AM.


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