"Planning your hand" vs Bet sizing tells

keasbeykeasbey Red Chipper Posts: 91 ✭✭
edited June 2018 in Live Poker Hands
With certain holdings, it is clear that some bet sizings are superior to others in various spots. For example, if you can manipulate the SPR to favor your holding, this should give you an advantage.

But if you are adjusting your bet sizes this way, arent you telegraphing your hand so that an observant V can safely narrow down your range?

A) Tailor your preflop raises.
You're not always going to have the luxury of tailoring your preflop raises to get that perfect SPR, but when you do have the opportunity you should take advantage of it.

i) Example of raising to 3bb.
You hold Ah Ks and you and an opponent have $100 effective stacks in a $1/$2 6max NLHE game. If you raise to 3bb from MP and your opponent in the CO calls, you will have an SPR of 6.3 ($94 : $15) on the flop.

This SPR may well be a little too high for you to justify putting all of your chips in the middle if you hit top pair on the flop, especially so if your opponent is tight as there is a greater likelihood that they are only going to be willing to get all their chips in the middle they will have a better hand than TPTK.

ii) Example of raising to 6bb.
Using the same example as above where the effective stacks are still $100, let's say we raise to 6bb ($12) instead of 3bb preflop. If our opponent again calls we will have an SPR of 3.3 ($88 : $27) on the flop.

With this lower SPR we will feel a lot more comfortable putting all of our chips in the middle if needs be. In addition the chances are that all of the money will be in by the turn, which saves us from a potentially difficult river decision.

In my shoes i would be concerned that a 6x raise would give off that i have some hand that favors low SPRs, like a big pair or some broadway hand, while a 3x raise would signify some kind of implied odds hand.

How do you reconcile these two things?


  • jfarrow13jfarrow13 Red Chipper Posts: 1,247 ✭✭✭✭
    Keep doing it until you are punished for it.
  • AustinAustin Red Chipper Posts: 5,483 ✭✭✭✭✭
    In a live game they will never exploit you for doing this. I will raise to $6-$10 in a 1\3 game with some suited broadways, Axs, small PP and they still won't 3bet KQ, AJ, TT, etc. They continue to just flat. Where as if you limp these hands you will face a big $25 raise from TT or 99 because they are scared to see a flop. On a tight table ill mix up my $10 bets with AK as well at times, so those who do squeeze light AK becomes an easy 4 bet.

    If they are calling wide with 50bb stacks and whether you make it $6 or $12 they still call all broadways then keep it at $12. When you mov3 up to 2\5 they are more observant where they might fold AJ if you open $25 and you usually open $20, so have to have a more stagnant open sizing. Some people will disagree with this because they are targeting the VIPs at the table. To each their own on that.
  • moishetreatsmoishetreats Red Chipper Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭✭
    As an aside, it's an odd hypothetical, IMO, because you don't play against a single opponent. Yes, one opponent might only have $100, but others might/should/probably have a lot more. I wouldn't worry primarily about the single short-stacked opponent when determining pre-flop bet-sizing (unless that opponent is particularly aggressive).

    That being said, I agree that you can keep doing it until you're punished. If/when you are, just throw in one or two odd hole cards when you do this -- and make sure to get to showdown or show them -- and that should at least keep your opponents a little uncertain.

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