Playing with small bankroll?

MGPTMGPT Red Chipper Posts: 30 ✭✭
edited January 2017 in Live Poker Hands
I recently moved towns and the only live game available is 2/5. There are some smaller home games that are 1/2 and 2/3 but they are generally mandatory straddle and they play like 2/5 or bigger.

Having had to dip into my bankroll to assist with moving house, I am left with around 5k at the moment for poker. I know I should probably save up until I have at least 15k but these games are super soft and I want to get out and play and keep my game fresh.

Online I suppose is an option but it's so hard to beat anything but the tiniest stakes, I would say the live 2/5 here plays like 10nl on Stars, if not softer. It seems like such a wasted effort grinding micros when there is money splashing around these live games.

So my question is basically, how would you recommend I play with a small roll like this? Should I be looking to reduce variance by buying in short and nitting it up?

Comments

  • bonezybonezy Red Chipper Posts: 82 ✭✭
    MGPT wrote: »
    I recently moved towns and the only live game available is 2/5. There are some smaller home games that are 1/2 and 2/3 but they are generally mandatory straddle and they play like 2/5 or bigger.

    Having had to dip into my bankroll to assist with moving house, I am left with around 5k at the moment for poker. I know I should probably save up until I have at least 15k but these games are super soft and I want to get out and play and keep my game fresh.

    Online I suppose is an option but it's so hard to beat anything but the tiniest stakes, I would say the live 2/5 here plays like 10nl on Stars, if not softer. It seems like such a wasted effort grinding micros when there is money splashing around these live games.

    So my question is basically, how would you recommend I play with a small roll like this? Should I be looking to reduce variance by buying in short and nitting it up?

    It all depends. If this is your only 5k you have to your name and you plan on paying living expenses out of that roll then I suggest getting a job of some sort ro supplement your income so poker isnt the only income you have. You should just play a normal 100bb game if its possible, I think its a good idea to not adjust the way you play depending on your roll. you are sure to make bas adjustments and bad folds given that you are afraid of busting your roll. if this is the case then either play lower or save up till you can play with no thought of going busto.
  • The MuleThe Mule Red Chipper Posts: 787 ✭✭✭
    So you have around 10 buy-ins ? I think if you are confident in your edge you should play your normal game, and hope you don't run too bad. Worst case you blow your bankroll and get relegated to online while you save up enough for another shot.
  • Doug HullDoug Hull RCP Coach Posts: 1,793 -
    We need more details.

    If you are not requiring the income, and this BR is disposable... Go play!

    If you are using poker as your sole income and 5K is your liferoll, find a job.

    Co-founder Red Chip Poker,
    Author Poker Plays You Can Use
    Author Poker Workbook for Math Geeks
  • MGPTMGPT Red Chipper Posts: 30 ✭✭
    Yes this 5k is purely a poker roll. I have been very careful to always keep poker money separate from real life. I actually always cash out into chips and take them home with me so it stays as 'chips' rather than 'money'.

    I have a job that comfortably pays for living expenses and have savings as well. But all this stays separate from poker for my marriages sake.
  • Doug HullDoug Hull RCP Coach Posts: 1,793 -
    edited December 2016
    You don't need a bankroll, you need a budget.

    Go play, there is not a lot of difference between "5k in chips at home and the ability to earn more at a 9-5" and "15k in chips at home right now."

    Maybe if this was motivation to study more as you build up the cushion then not playing make more sense.
    Co-founder Red Chip Poker,
    Author Poker Plays You Can Use
    Author Poker Workbook for Math Geeks
  • jfarrow13jfarrow13 Red Chipper Posts: 1,254 ✭✭✭✭
    @MGPT I like the idea of turning bankroll into chips, I keep mine as cash and then like end up using it on life bills and entertainment and stuff and think "man look at that I used my credit card like 3 times this month poker pays for all my fun!" all the while my bank roll stays roughly the same or maybe even goes down a bit, and now I'm on a big downswing and I got like $700 left and I'm like "man...I wish I hadn't been spending my bankroll like my ass was candy."
  • JoeOffsuitJoeOffsuit Red Chipper Posts: 404 ✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    MGPT wrote: »
    I recently moved towns and the only live game available is 2/5. There are some smaller home games that are 1/2 and 2/3 but they are generally mandatory straddle and they play like 2/5 or bigger.

    Another option to consider, that may not be for everyone, is to play in the 2/5 game, but play short stack, only buying in for $200-$250 (40-50 BB) If you double your stack in a session, cash out and come back another night when you can short stack again. (Or play a little longer very tight so it doesn't look as shameful.)

    Short stacking isn't for everyone, and a lot of people don't find it very fun. But some of us enjoy it.

    This will bring your bankroll to 20-25 buy ins, still shallow giving you a considerable risk of ruin even if you play with an advantage, but if you got an additional job you should be ok.
  • BenLeewoodBenLeewood Red Chipper Posts: 285 ✭✭
    Soft games + disposable poker income = Play Poker.

    There's nothing else to say. Even if I had only 3 buy ins. I'm using 1. If I bust, I'm coming back next week to use another. If I bust, I'm coming back the next week and playing like Mike McDermott.

    If the games are good, you must play.
  • D.B Cooper D.B Cooper Red Chipper Posts: 20
    I think you can do it with less. Hell I do 1-3/2-5 with less and I play daily. might help to find a buddy and agreed to steak each other if worst-case scenario happens. only thing I find is when you feel you're not rolled enough you make bad decisions. I would definitely agree 5k is more valuable at live cash then it would be online. its December now and I've grinded 10$ a hr this year. I started with 3k with my average buyin being around $900. I went real close to being bustO once. it really helps knowing I had a friend that was going to back me if I needed it.
  • D.B Cooper D.B Cooper Red Chipper Posts: 20
    But don't listen to me because my bankroll management skills are piss poor.
  • Doug HullDoug Hull RCP Coach Posts: 1,793 -
    If you do not spend out of your bankroll, every winning player will have a buy-in where they are in positive profit and never go negative again. Any of these three could be that buy-in.
    Co-founder Red Chip Poker,
    Author Poker Plays You Can Use
    Author Poker Workbook for Math Geeks
  • ChuckPlaysCardsChuckPlaysCards Red Chipper Posts: 52 ✭✭
    MGPT wrote: »
    I recently moved towns and the only live game available is 2/5. There are some smaller home games that are 1/2 and 2/3 but they are generally mandatory straddle and they play like 2/5 or bigger.

    Having had to dip into my bankroll to assist with moving house, I am left with around 5k at the moment for poker. I know I should probably save up until I have at least 15k but these games are super soft and I want to get out and play and keep my game fresh.

    Online I suppose is an option but it's so hard to beat anything but the tiniest stakes, I would say the live 2/5 here plays like 10nl on Stars, if not softer. It seems like such a wasted effort grinding micros when there is money splashing around these live games.

    So my question is basically, how would you recommend I play with a small roll like this? Should I be looking to reduce variance by buying in short and nitting it up?

    What is the lowest level online you think is beatable?
  • volcanovolcano Red Chipper Posts: 346 ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    bankroll shmankroll. Do NOT nit it up. Buy in short is ok, get it all in and rebuy.
  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,842 ✭✭✭✭✭
    It's true that shortstacking can be fun/relaxing. To be honest, sometimes when I get low I don't top off - I just enjoy a little shortstacking. Might not be the most EV play, but....

    If I had another source of income, I'd be comfortable playing $2/5 NLH with my regular strategy with $5,000.
  • jfarrow13jfarrow13 Red Chipper Posts: 1,254 ✭✭✭✭
    Hey man, I short stack when I don't really feel like putting in a ton of effort and paying attention or my bankroll starts to get low. Buy in for $100 at $1-2 or $200 at $2-5, wait for JJ+, push the action, don't bluff, profit. Boring, but if you aren't really worried about paying attention the play is built into the system, no other information required.
  • volcanovolcano Red Chipper Posts: 346 ✭✭
    jj + isnt shortstack its nit. lower your standards quite a bit to play short
  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,842 ✭✭✭✭✭
    JJ+ is nitty, but on the other hand it's surprising how I see people misplay short stacks. It's more about situation dependent than actual cards. Some people get down to $100 in a $1/3 game, and then they look for a hand to shove preflop. They're looking at their cards more than the action. For example, there's a UTG raise to $12 and they shove KQ or A9s for $100. They've just decided they're going to shove the next "good" hand they get for some reason, which isn't the same as good shortstacking.
  • jfarrow13jfarrow13 Red Chipper Posts: 1,254 ✭✭✭✭


    referring to this video, while old still works very well for me. I've tweaked it here and there, but principles of it still apply and work.
  • jfarrow13jfarrow13 Red Chipper Posts: 1,254 ✭✭✭✭
    I don't just jam over the top of any open, but will 3-bet. If I still have an over pair and they aren't showing a ton of aggression, I'm taking it all the way/trying to get the stack in ASAP.
  • GoStumpyGoStumpy Red Chipper Posts: 57
    Something I'm thinking about with my too-small of a bankroll, is that my play is quite likely, not just maybe, but quite likely affected by my 'worry' that I'm on one of my last buyins... It will make me timid, and likely not be nearly as aggressive as I should be to be winning pots that I should be winning...

    Without knowing that I have a cushion of bankroll to fall back on, I'm less likely to look for +EV spots and more likely to fold to pressure of any kind...unless I have a lock.

    Is this just something I'm going to have to live with? I'm adding onto my bankroll whenever I can, right now I'm playing 1/2 with barely 3 buyins of 100bb :(
  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,842 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Not much you can really do about that @GoStumpy - basically you're trading some EV for a reduction in variance. Assuming you're still playing a +EV game, that is :)
  • jfarrow13jfarrow13 Red Chipper Posts: 1,254 ✭✭✭✭
    Buy-in small, only play premium hands, don't bluff. Build slowly.
  • TravisTravis Red Chipper Posts: 455 ✭✭✭
    @GoStumpy I have been in that boat and it is tough. Just build as you can and keep working on your short stack game. This will benefit you immensely down the road. You will know how to exploit short stacks and your overall game will improve...
    I would always try to protect my bankroll.. buy-in for 100.. double up then change tables and buy-in for 100 so I was freerolling. Build that to 300 change tables again. Etc etc.
  • volcanovolcano Red Chipper Posts: 346 ✭✭
    most people play short after losing most of their money. Id suggest against that- just go home.
  • jfarrow13jfarrow13 Red Chipper Posts: 1,254 ✭✭✭✭
    volcano wrote: »
    most people play short after losing most of their money. Id suggest against that- just go home.

    It just means you have to take away some of your hands. It's just boring. No real room to bluff, maneuver or "play poker". It's just a wait for premium, raise for value, if you make top pair or have an over pair play it hard and fast. You'll often find yourself getting called down and doubled up.
  • volcanovolcano Red Chipper Posts: 346 ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    I start short, and attempt to do all what you said. But when you get busted you tend to play shitty, you cant even follow the easiest short stack strategy. Then you go home broke instead of a tankfull of gas.

    Like I said I like starting short. Sometimes I even get accused of playing tight and I just lmao inside.

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