Varying Pre-flop open raise size depending on position

    • whipflip15
      whipflip15
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      Joined: 25.11.2006 Posts: 284
      Whats your opinion on varying your open raise size with respect to your position?

      For Example

      EP = 3 BB
      MP = 3.5 BB
      LP = 4 BB

      The only advantage i can see is that the pot is smaller when out of position. Worth a try?
  • 12 replies
    • SonicXT
      SonicXT
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      Joined: 15.06.2007 Posts: 4,736
      Nope, what if you got AA in EP. You raise to 3BB, give reasonable odds for the first player to call and great odds for all possible next callers.
      So I guess you'll be coming back and complaining about you're AA/KK's getting cracked by "donks" in no time :D
    • xylere
      xylere
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      Joined: 27.05.2007 Posts: 2,939
      Originally posted by whipflip15
      Whats your opinion on varying your open raise size with respect to your position?

      For Example

      EP = 3 BB
      MP = 3.5 BB
      LP = 4 BB

      The only advantage i can see is that the pot is smaller when out of position. Worth a try?
      I guess it should be fine. exactly the same pattern phil gordon suggests in his book.

      advantages:

      - smaller pot oop
      - bigger pot in position
      - more pressure on the blinds

      and maybe something else I don`t remember, you can check his book
    • Timor83
      Timor83
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      Joined: 08.06.2007 Posts: 2,793
      Varying preflop raises is fine, but it's hard for a beginner, especially if you're multitabling. You shouldn't solely consider position to determine the size, but also the hand you hold and the hand you want to flop. If you want to know more about it, just read NLHE: Theory & Practice (Sklansky & Miller).
      I've found that the standard 4BB+1BB per limper works fine and is still the best overall method to play though.
    • Puschkin81
      Puschkin81
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      Joined: 14.04.2006 Posts: 4,786
      Hi guys!

      I agree with Timor83. The proposals of Phil Gordon and Sklansky to vary the betsize are not that bad but I think a beginner should stick to the 4BB+1BB rule to be unreadable and concentrate on his postflopskills. Your postflopskills are way more important in NL because the "big money" can be won or lost on turn and river, not preflop. For experienced players it might be an additional means to disguise their style of play.

      Good luck at the tables!
      Puschkin81
    • whipflip15
      whipflip15
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      Joined: 25.11.2006 Posts: 284
      Ok if you think 3BB is to low from EP then what if 4 from EP and 4.5 from LP.

      Thinking about it i doubt it would make much of difference.

      I guess it would be much more useful in MTT play.
    • SonicXT
      SonicXT
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      Joined: 15.06.2007 Posts: 4,736
      Really, I'd keep it at 4BB/100 for now from any position, just to avoid confusion to yourself as you need to learn postflop plays at first. If you keep using the 4BB standard, you'll see more patterns in your play, while with differing raise standars, it would be harder to compare hands and evaluate your postflop plays for yourself.

      I would say you should only consider about varying your size of raises as soon as you know how to use Tracker and AceHud, you're sitting with players of whom you got a decent amount on reads and your postflop skills are above average. This is of course my personal view and nothing more than this :
      - If I got a player to the right of me that seems to have a very "fold to blind steal" rate, I actually increase the raise size with any hand I would be willing to raise with, because against a blind defender, I want higher fold equity or higher pot sizes as my hand will usually be better than this.
      - If the table's tight, I might lower my standard raise size, the reverse is true when they're very loose.
      - If I'm deepstacked and there are a few more deepstacks at the table (>175BB) and they have to act behind me, I increase my raise size because I want to decrease their implied odds.
      However, this doesn't change a thing about which hands I raise and sometimes, I might find myself raising a hand big where I'm the one with the implied odds, just to throw them off ... a small price to pay for unreadability.

      I'd like someone to review this type of bet sizes though. A second opinion never hurts ...
    • whipflip15
      whipflip15
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      Joined: 25.11.2006 Posts: 284
      Originally posted by SonicXT
      - If I got a player to the right of me that seems to have a very low "fold to blind steal" rate, I actually increase the raise size with any hand I would be willing to raise with, because against a blind defender, I want higher fold equity or higher pot sizes as my hand will usually be better than his.
      I guess this would work well if villian is weak post-flop. low wts and high fold cbet% but i tend to just take hands off my stealing range. Try not to steal with low sc or hands like A2 and 89
    • SonicXT
      SonicXT
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      Joined: 15.06.2007 Posts: 4,736
      Yea of course, that's also a possibility. But I'm trying to loosen up my preflop game to get maximum EV out of all hands. Still gotta work on it of course, but I got my VPIP up from 15 to about 28 without losing winrate as to improve my postflop skills and gain experience trying stuff.
      So instead of just tightening up my steal range in that particular situation, I increase all of my bet sizes first in from late position against a blind defender, because on average I have an edge with any playable hand from that position so I want a bigger pot on average. Then I take notes on him whether he's tightening up on his blinds when I do this, or whether he just continues to defend more aggressively and adapt my range and bet size accordingly. I admit, it's sometimes hard to search for the good balance, but I like to try out new things and varying betsizes instead of merely ranges is one of them ... if it works out, my winrate goes up, if it doesn't, I have a small loss over a short amount of time and play on like before.

      I still think there's something to be said for my approach. Though the conventional methods are good as well, I want better results than your average PokerStrategy TAG :)

      So I guess, don't be afraid to try things out. I like the fact that you started to think about varying preflop betsizes and all that and put them on here for review ... I just don't believe the small in EP/big in LP works.
    • aciddrop
      aciddrop
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      Joined: 08.10.2006 Posts: 1,519
      So Sonic, are you playing FR or SH?
    • SonicXT
      SonicXT
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      Joined: 15.06.2007 Posts: 4,736
      At the moment, I'm not playing due to exams and I'm using this board to fix some leaks and keep in touch with my poker skills in a meanwhile, commenting on hands etc.
      But I'll be playing SH again next week ...

      Got any comment on my approach though ? I'd like to hear some opinions because it's something I been thinking about a while, I really like to improve my game in any area that I can with whatever I can think of (thought through thoroughly though) :)
    • aciddrop
      aciddrop
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      Joined: 08.10.2006 Posts: 1,519
      OK. I was mostly interested in the Vpip, 15 up to 28. If you managed that at FR without impacting your winrate, I was really impressed!

      I haven't managed to make a successful transition to SH yet. Tried a couple of times, but seem all at sea.

      Flexibility is good regarding all strategies I think. The important thing is attention to what is happening at your tables. This should govern what size bet is most appropriate for a situation. Playing without fear, but not foolhardy.
    • SonicXT
      SonicXT
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      Joined: 15.06.2007 Posts: 4,736
      Well, gotta be honest there, it's been 15 at FR before and got it up to 28 with about 50% FR/ 50% SH.
      If I check it by number of players, it's now at 24 for FR and 31 for SH.

      My winrate's still not that impressive though, just 4PTBB/100 at NL25 which I consider mediocre given the level of play at those tables.