Why is min-raising so bad?

__main____main__ Red Chipper Posts: 11 ✭✭
edited October 2018 in General Concepts
I understand that min-raising basically makes it so your opponent will almost always have the odds to call your raise, but what about when you're nutted and just want more money in the pot with very little chance of blowing them out? Is it so bad then?

For example

on BTN with :8s:8d

EP raises, we flat

Flop comes :As:8c:4h

EP bets 2/3 pot, is a min raise bad here?

Would love some insight, thanks!
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Comments

  • AlvinLauAlvinLau Red Chipper Posts: 28 ✭✭
    Inherently, min raising isn't bad, and there are probably more min raising spots that are really good than most people realize. This is not one of them.

    The main problem here is that you are looking at your hand, the situation, and forming a strategy around your individual hand. As I mention in nearly every thread I've posted in so far, this is a poor way to think about poker. If you min raise then bomb here, people will figure out what you're doing without a showdown.

    Example: if you min raise here then bomb on future streets, how are you balancing that with bluffs against an UTG opponent who is betting large into a board texture he crushes?

    Your question shouldn't be "what do I do with 99 here," it should be "is it strategically feasible to have a minraising range in this scenario, and how do I balance it in a way that creates tension for my opponent's medium holdings?"

    In this case, I think having a river raising range would win more money.
  • __main____main__ Red Chipper Posts: 11 ✭✭
    edited October 2018
    AlvinLau wrote: »
    Inherently, min raising isn't bad, and there are probably more min raising spots that are really good than most people realize. This is not one of them.

    The main problem here is that you are looking at your hand, the situation, and forming a strategy around your individual hand. As I mention in nearly every thread I've posted in so far, this is a poor way to think about poker. If you min raise then bomb here, people will figure out what you're doing without a showdown.

    Example: if you min raise here then bomb on future streets, how are you balancing that with bluffs against an UTG opponent who is betting large into a board texture he crushes?

    Your question shouldn't be "what do I do with 99 here," it should be "is it strategically feasible to have a minraising range in this scenario, and how do I balance it in a way that creates tension for my opponent's medium holdings?"

    In this case, I think having a river raising range would win more money.

    Hi Alvin, thanks for taking the time to answer my question.

    To be honest, what you speak of is currently a little out of scope to me right now, I'm still a pretty new player and still trying to get off the ground. I'd love to have a completely balanced strategy at some point, but trying to learn what the most +EV things are in everyday situations is what I've ended up trying to do for now.

    Another issue is I'm playing 1/2 live and $2/5/10NL online where opponents are (generally) not going to make many adjustments and exploit me.

    Of course, that doesn't give me the right to not think about having a balanced range here of bluff raises to value raises; it's just not on my radar until I can prove I'm a solid ABC poker player at the micros.

    If you have any advice on next steps for someone who wants to develop a full range of hands, and how I could get around this erroneous way of thinking about poker, I'd love to hear your input on where I could start learning about that.

    Thanks for the response.
  • kageykagey Red Chipper, KINGOFTAGS Posts: 2,241 ✭✭✭✭✭
    what Alvin is trying to say is:
    if you play certain hands one way and others another, the more perceptive players will exploit you.
    bet sizing is one of a player's "tells"
    new players often bet small with nutted hands and large with not-so-strong hands.
    guess how I would counteract that?

    also - what if you have a good draw?
    say the flop was: :As:8h:5h
    and you have :7h:6h on the button
    would you still make a min-raise?
    what if you had :Ad:Ac ?

    a final reason to avoid the dreaded min-raise is because you're keeping the pot small with a very strong hand... a hand that you're not folding by the river right?
    I watched a player make "cutsy" bets on 3 streets with 88 on a T 8 3 5 7 board... and guess what? he gets raised on the river by J9 and pays the guy off.

    take a moment and ask yourself "why" you're betting?
    also take a moment to calculate how often you have a nutted hand.
    put those two together and you'll find that you're winning the minimum and losing the maximum.

    taking the min-raise betting line is very transparent.
    continue using it at your own risk.
  • moishetreatsmoishetreats Red Chipper Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭✭
    Min-raising isn't "bad". In fact, there isn't really "good" or "bad" in poker. Rather, I'd suggest thinking in terms of + or - EV (expected value; does this move in the long run likely gain or lose me money?) and also in terms of optimal and sub-optimal play (just because a move is +EV doesn't mean that it is the most +EV).

    With that in mind, it should become clear from the advice given already in this thread that min-raising is hardly a long-term guarantee of a +EV. Moreover, it is almost never optimal.

    If you are min-raising, then you need to have a compelling reason to eschew the plays that are usually a far better +EV. That is a deviation, though, rather than a standard practice.
  • AlvinLauAlvinLau Red Chipper Posts: 28 ✭✭
    __main__ wrote: »
    .

    If you have any advice on next steps for someone who wants to develop a full range of hands, and how I could get around this erroneous way of thinking about poker, I'd love to hear your input on where I could start learning about that.

    Thanks for the response.

    Your end goal should be to get a solver, teach yourself how to master it as a modeling tool, and learn the intensely deep secrets you get combing through the minutae of numbers and textures. The more little gems you unlock, the more you become unbeatable in every situation.

    I'd Google "uri peleg pio solver rabbit holes" for a decent explanation of what NOT to do with solvers (focus on individual hand play) and how he approaches poker in this beautiful and holistic way that makes everything easy and lets you predict exactly how to proceed on every turn and river.
  • TheGameKatTheGameKat Posts: 3,838 -
    Min-raising isn't "bad". In fact, there isn't really "good" or "bad" in poker. Rather, I'd suggest thinking in terms of + or - EV (expected value; does this move in the long run likely gain or lose me money?) and also in terms of optimal and sub-optimal play (just because a move is +EV doesn't mean that it is the most +EV).

    With that in mind, it should become clear from the advice given already in this thread that min-raising is hardly a long-term guarantee of a +EV. Moreover, it is almost never optimal.

    If you are min-raising, then you need to have a compelling reason to eschew the plays that are usually a far better +EV. That is a deviation, though, rather than a standard practice.

    I really like that conceptual framework.
    Moderation In Moderation
  • moishetreatsmoishetreats Red Chipper Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭✭
    TheGameKat wrote: »
    Min-raising isn't "bad". In fact, there isn't really "good" or "bad" in poker. Rather, I'd suggest thinking in terms of + or - EV (expected value; does this move in the long run likely gain or lose me money?) and also in terms of optimal and sub-optimal play (just because a move is +EV doesn't mean that it is the most +EV).

    With that in mind, it should become clear from the advice given already in this thread that min-raising is hardly a long-term guarantee of a +EV. Moreover, it is almost never optimal.

    If you are min-raising, then you need to have a compelling reason to eschew the plays that are usually a far better +EV. That is a deviation, though, rather than a standard practice.

    I really like that conceptual framework.

    Thank you, @TheGameKat!
  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 5,003 ✭✭✭✭✭
    AlvinLau wrote: »
    Inherently, min raising isn't bad, and there are probably more min raising spots that are really good than most people realize.

    I think you're right about that. For years I never min raised because I thought it was a fish move. If you limit yourself in thinking like that, you take away creative options. It's one of my goals to be open minded about looking for moves that I previously turned down my nose at.

  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 5,003 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2018
    __main__ wrote: »
    Another issue is I'm playing 1/2 live and $2/5/10NL online where opponents are (generally) not going to make many adjustments and exploit me.

    Well, some will, even if subconsciously. Sometimes average players start picking up on the correct thing to do just based on experience and intuition. It's really fairly easy for even someone without any theoretical background to pick up on your bet sizing tells, if you do the same thing too often.

    So the first thing to do is ask yourself while in a hand "Can my opponent figure out what this means?" or even "Has my opponent seen me do this same thing with this same hand before?" Determine who is paying attention and who isn't.

    Either way, you're going to want to min raise sometimes, let's say. First of all, most $1/2 players have minraised before only with the nuts. So the common representation is the nuts. So if you do it, understand how it will be perceived by many players.

    There are obvious exceptions. UTG player raises to $6. He gets 3 callers, and the button raises to $10. This does not normally mean AA/KK. etc.

    It does not always mean the nuts, and it will not always be perceived as the nuts. The earlier in the hand it is, the more tempting it can be for your opponent to call with great odds to outdraw you.

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