Applying Soto's Strategy Correctly?

NinjahNinjah Red Chipper Posts: 1,138 ✭✭✭✭
edited January 2017 in Live Poker Hands
So like a few others on here, I attended Soto's webinar and loved it. However, it is very rare that I get the opportunity to play live since I don't live anywhere near a casino. I recently got the chance to make a day trip to play and the following hand came up and I wanted to see if others (and @Christian Soto ) would agree or disagree that this is a correct application of the strategy. In my opinion, two central ideas come together here for the perfect storm: a board run-out in which I have a clear range advantage and a predictable opponent that has a capped range.

$1/2 game with $250 effective stacks. Villain is a OMC who lives appears to live by the motto of "don't go broke with one pair" and isn't going to be tricky at all. He isn't going to hand read and won't think in terms of linear ranges so there are many board runouts that could be scary to his hand.

It folds to me on the button and I raise to $15 with XX. Villain reraises to $30 from the SB. With this player type 1) 3-betting and 2) doing so from OOP, he has a very face up range of JJ+ and AKs. His tiny reraise means we have plenty of room to play poker so I elect to do so and call.

Flop: :8s:5c:3h (Pot $60)

He c-bets for $25 and I elect to call and plan to fire on any turn card that is better for my range than his if he checks. I have hands like 98s, 87s, 56s, and all sets in my range whereas he does not have any of these.

Turn: :7s (Pot $110)

He bets $25 again. I think he was concerned with my call on the flop and is a bit weary now. I feel it's time to apply pressure and raise to $75. This is the key moment in the hand. As I mentioned earlier, he isn't going to do or say anything tricky. He tanks for about 90 seconds, slowly shifting his hands back and forth from his chips to his cards. This tells me that he's really stuck on the fence between calling and folding. He says "this is a hard hand to let go" and tanks for about another 30 seconds, finally deciding to make the call. My plan is to shove any river that can be an additional scare card to his overpair. Effective stacks are around $120.

River: :9d (Pot $260)

Excellent card for me. There is now a 4 card straight on the board so all of my 76s and 56s hands get there in addition to my sets and two pairs. He checks. I read this as he is afraid of the board and has elected to give up. I shove fairly quickly, he sits for about 10 seconds and mucks, saying "if you didn't have a hand, that was a great play". I say thank you and stack my chips.

Thoughts?
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Comments

  • tripletiretripletire Red Chipper Posts: 323 ✭✭✭
    I like it a lot. You made a correct read on a villain who plays face up and you made an exploitative play where you likely got maximum profit. Well done sir
  • ChipXtractorChipXtractor Red Chipper, Table Captain Posts: 1,191 ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    I guess the real take away is has your thinking and choices changed since being exposed to Christian's information? It certainly looks like it has.

    Second question than would be do you think the choices you are making now are putting you on the path to more profits than in the past? Seems like they probably are.

    Wins all around my friend.
    Twitter = @ChipXtractor
  • Skors3Skors3 Red Chipper Posts: 667 ✭✭✭
    This is a common situation and I think you read it pretty well. OMC always has an over pair here. I don't even think he has AK and if he did he's not betting the flop without hitting.

    It was a standard OMC line. He bets the flop because he has an over pair. He then bets the same amount on the turn because you called and gave him pause, but he still has an over pair. His calling your raise may be standard for the top of his range. Then they always check the river hoping you give up.
  • NinjahNinjah Red Chipper Posts: 1,138 ✭✭✭✭
    I guess the real take away is has your thinking and choices changed since being exposed to Christian's information? It certainly looks like it has.

    Second question than would be do you think the choices you are making now are putting you on the path to more profits than in the past? Seems like they probably are.

    Wins all around my friend.

    My thinking has definitely changed since receiving the information. Prior to the webinar, I would have never even raised the particular hand that I held and most certainly would have folded to a 3-bet if I did raise rather than have a plan to take the pot away postflop by placing pressure on my opponent. Although I need more work, I am definitely starting to switch my focus away from the hand I old and more towards playing the situation. To address your second question, these choices definitely will place me on the path to more profit because not only has it strengthened my overall game, it has opened the door to me exploiting my opponents and finding profitable spots that I would have never found before, which is so much of what winning poker is about.
  • kageykagey Red Chipper, KINGOFTAGS Posts: 2,241 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I don't like your bet sizing much.
    Soto likes to find pain thresholds... betting $15 pre is hardly a pain threshold.
    Maybe in a super duper nitty game - but in what I've seen, 20+ would be better.

    On the turn, again - your bet sizing doesn't seem Soto-eque.
    Pot is 110. V bets 25. You raise to 75.
    Pot is then 210... V has to call 50 to win 210.
    Again, no real "pain" here.
    Although, it sounds like for old man coffee it sort of is... but not convincingly enough.

    This is the problem with trying Soto's tactics at 100BB deep... or against opponents who are 100BB deep... you lose a LOT of leverage opportunity.

    Say you raised turn to 200 and you had 600 behind.
    Now THAT's pain threshold... because V isn't just calling 175 to win 210... he should be concerned that the other 600 is going in on the turn.

    As played... I'm not sure I would classify this as Soto-eque play... but it was a very good float, turn semi-bluff and river bluff. This is probably a good example of Miller's "Play the Player"... though.

    In most lower stakes, OMC calls you with QQ+ here because he can't find a fold button. NH.
  • NinjahNinjah Red Chipper Posts: 1,138 ✭✭✭✭
    kagey wrote: »
    I don't like your bet sizing much.
    Soto likes to find pain thresholds... betting $15 pre is hardly a pain threshold.
    Maybe in a super duper nitty game - but in what I've seen, 20+ would be better.

    On the turn, again - your bet sizing doesn't seem Soto-eque.
    Pot is 110. V bets 25. You raise to 75.
    Pot is then 210... V has to call 50 to win 210.
    Again, no real "pain" here.
    Although, it sounds like for old man coffee it sort of is... but not convincingly enough.

    This is the problem with trying Soto's tactics at 100BB deep... or against opponents who are 100BB deep... you lose a LOT of leverage opportunity.

    Say you raised turn to 200 and you had 600 behind.
    Now THAT's pain threshold... because V isn't just calling 175 to win 210... he should be concerned that the other 600 is going in on the turn.

    As played... I'm not sure I would classify this as Soto-eque play... but it was a very good float, turn semi-bluff and river bluff. This is probably a good example of Miller's "Play the Player"... though.

    In most lower stakes, OMC calls you with QQ+ here because he can't find a fold button. NH.

    100ish bb stacks does make things more complicated when it comes to his style, but the strategy is more than just pain threshold..it's also the threat of putting stacks at risk. This was a nitty early morning game where $15 was generating HU pots and often forcing preflop folds around the entire table. The idea was that against a player playing a very face up range who doesn't calculate the odds but rather places a numerical value on his hand vs. the board that I could place enough pressure on him by putting his stack at risk when the board run out wasn't favorable for him. It may also fall into Miller's "Playing the Player" but there's no rule suggesting that certain ideas or concepts can't merge.
  • Mr. DontMr. Dont Red Chipper Posts: 370 ✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    I haven't attend soto's webinar, also still quiet not sure what he really means, how to effectively apply. However, I agree with "threat of putting stacks at risk". Miller wrote an article on Cardplayer magazine that most of deepstacks in NL doesnt actually play, no one really put whole stack to bluff or bet unless they have the nut. Same thing for me, though I have the nut, Im not comfortable to put whole stack to the risk. Pre flop with AA, for example, Id like to get it in, but still don't feel comfotable to play whole stack. Last session, on the flop I bet half of my stack with nut, top set, making clear to villain that I got monster and if you put me all in, Ill get it in. But still wishing for him to fold. Luckily my hand hold. Honestly, if Im against opponenets who put me in the spot to risk my whole stack, Im not sure I can handle that.
  • Christian SotoChristian Soto RCP Coach Posts: 2,195 ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Mr. Dont wrote: »
    I haven't attend soto's webinar, also still quiet not sure what he really means, how to effectively apply. However, I agree with "threat of putting stacks at risk". Miller wrote an article on Cardplayer magazine that most of deepstacks in NL doesnt actually play, no one really put whole stack to bluff or bet unless they have the nut. Same thing for me, though I have the nut, Im not comfortable to put whole stack to the risk. Pre flop with AA, for example, Id like to get it in, but still don't feel comfotable to play whole stack. Last session, on the flop I bet half of my stack with nut, top set, making clear to villain that I got monster and if you put me all in, Ill get it in. But still wishing for him to fold. Luckily my hand hold. Honestly, if Im against opponenets who put me in the spot to risk my whole stack, Im not sure I can handle that.

    You may have real issues with fear @Mr. Dont -

    The opening slide of my webinar was "Everything you want is on the other side of fear." I believe this is true.

    With respect, If you are afraid of putting in your whole stack with the nuts, how can you ever do it with nothing? You don't have to answer that obv.

    Keep working on it. GL.
  • Mr. DontMr. Dont Red Chipper Posts: 370 ✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Thanks @Christian Soto. I still fear that I got outdrawn or sucked out. Getting a little used to those situation, but get it in good but sucked out, losing whole stack situation is still frustrating. Last session, I had to deal with villain who is exactly opposite of me. He has no fear to get it in with draw or marginal hand to apply maximum.pressure. I backed down a couple of time with most of times. For example, Had QQ pre, he raise I 3bet, he 4bet, I somehow felt he has AK, and he show AK after I folded. Im sure he shove if I 5bet, were both 300BB+ deep cant stop thinking about that hand after session. Planned to keep work on it.
  • mbehr1983mbehr1983 Red Chipper Posts: 635 ✭✭✭
    @Christian Soto this fear thing holds me back as well. How do we go about geting over it?
  • kageykagey Red Chipper, KINGOFTAGS Posts: 2,241 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Ninjah wrote: »
    100ish bb stacks does make things more complicated when it comes to his style, but the strategy is more than just pain threshold..it's also the threat of putting stacks at risk. This was a nitty early morning game where $15 was generating HU pots and often forcing preflop folds around the entire table. The idea was that against a player playing a very face up range who doesn't calculate the odds but rather places a numerical value on his hand vs. the board that I could place enough pressure on him by putting his stack at risk when the board run out wasn't favorable for him. It may also fall into Miller's "Playing the Player" but there's no rule suggesting that certain ideas or concepts can't merge.
    agree
    based on this - you can see how live games play so much different than online!
    good job on creating a game plan and sticking to it... fearlessly.
    that is definitely a strong point in Soto's game.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,656 ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    I had posted this on an other thread but @Mr. Dont you may like to think about this.

    "The rule for all terrors is head straight into them. When you are sailing in a storm you don't let a wave hit your boat on the side. You go bow into the wave and ride it, You see, when you get that sense of terror go right at it, don't run away. Explore. Feel fear as completely as you can feel it. Head straight into it. And just it so happens these things give you the opportunity to go into some of your very very most closely kept skeletons. And the result of that is invariably beneficial."

    -Alan Watts
  • eugeniusjreugeniusjr Red Chipper Posts: 427 ✭✭✭
    Action was folded to him on the BTN. I think 15 is plenty is without any limpers. Actually, since the purpose of raising is isolation (and playability), a smaller raise size may work the same. 10 should get one of the two blinds to fold whatever trash they have.

    I like the preflop call. I like the whole plan and the execution. Your raises were small, but proportional to stack sizes, and the raise turn shove river line, with the sizing you used, was the strongest I can see. I like that you gave him two opportunities to fold.

    (Hmmm.... my thoughts above contradict my thoughts over here - http://forum.redchippoker.com/discussion/5717/am-i-the-omc-with-qq-here#latest. Wth, I need to think about this more. I'm not sure I can have it both ways.)


    My only question about your thought process is that you initially state that OMC "isn't going to hand read and won't think in terms of linear ranges" then later (earlier, actually) you state that the board gives you clear range advantage. Does range advantage matter when the villain doesn't realize you have it?
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭
    persuadeo wrote: »
    Fausto is out there, waiting

    Waiting

    Waiting to suck out on you.

    lol...the last time i played against Fausto , he said i was the only one he couldn't suck out on...i smiled and said "i got lucky this time"....but might not next time (because i have no fear....and he is still waiting!).
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭



    My only question about your thought process is that you initially state that OMC "isn't going to hand read and won't think in terms of linear ranges" then later (earlier, actually) you state that the board gives you clear range advantage. Does range advantage matter when the villain doesn't realize you have it?[/quote]

    This is a good question , and as always in poker, the answer is :"it depends".If you know for a fact that the villain is not at all a thinking player and he(or she) is totally clueless, then no, it most likely will not matter.

    Playing against a clueless player is not what we are here to learn.Anyone can beat a clueless player (in the long run) by just waiting for good cards and value betting.No tricks or thinking needed. Our question isn't really talking about "clueless", but a thinking player that would be good enough to notice that they are most likely no longer winning, with the board texture and how the hand was played out, and in that case the answer is "yes" it does matter.
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭
    btw...I just want to say: Soto, you (and the Berky crew) are still way ahead, on where poker needs to go, to beat the rest of the competition.It is not easy for us "Chilean miners" to see what you see, but with enough studying, we will learn enough to see the light !....keep up the good work !
  • eugeniusjreugeniusjr Red Chipper Posts: 427 ✭✭✭
    Is he a thinking player or does he not hand read?
  • BadFrog1BadFrog1 Red Chipper Posts: 136 ✭✭
    As a couple others have mentioned, range advantage doesn't seem to apply. It doesn't matter if you can ever have a 6 here because your opponent isn't putting you on a proper range.

    @kagey is complaining about your bet sizing, but I actually think it's quite good for the situation. Again, you need to get on the level of your opponent here. If he was thinking about pot odds, he wouldn't have underbet flop and turn. He's not thinking about getting 4:1 on a turn call, he's just thinking that you raised 3X his bet and that you must have a good hand. Also if you had gone any bigger, you wouldn't have had enough to make a scary river bet.

    Anyway, I think this was well played. It definitely takes guts to bluff somebody off of an overpair, so well done.
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭
    BadFrog1 wrote: »
    As a couple others have mentioned, range advantage doesn't seem to apply. It doesn't matter if you can ever have a 6 here because your opponent isn't putting you on a proper range.

    @kagey is complaining about your bet sizing, but I actually think it's quite good for the situation. Again, you need to get on the level of your opponent here. If he was thinking about pot odds, he wouldn't have underbet flop and turn. He's not thinking about getting 4:1 on a turn call, he's just thinking that you raised 3X his bet and that you must have a good hand. Also if you had gone any bigger, you wouldn't have had enough to make a scary river bet.

    Anyway, I think this was well played. It definitely takes guts to bluff somebody off of an overpair, so well done.

    agrees...but there is more to this then winning or losing or taking guts...we have to think more....we have to be thinking of what this hand will do later in the game...if you are called it is not so bad, because you will be showing your opponent that you are willing to play some tricky plays on them, and you can use their thinking to your advantage later in the game.The more pressure we can put on our opponents, the more chances we will have to force them to make mistakes.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,656 ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    He may not read hand well but he is not a total brain damaged Nam war vet. If he can bet his hand a certain amount because he think that "this" particular holding worth "that" price it tells us that he is capable of a certain analysis about where he think he stand with that holding. And given that assumption, it tells us that he is probably capable of reading a board since he puts hands in certain brackets of price. Reading where your holding stands on certain runout vs. reading hand ranges is totally different imho. And that is what, i think, Ninjah wanted to say when he said that. And by his actions with his bet sizings, OMC is kind of confirming that.

    And i honestly think that even if OMC can't hand ranges read and runout read, just because he bet a certain amount in correlation with his holding we can exploit that.
  • NinjahNinjah Red Chipper Posts: 1,138 ✭✭✭✭
    He may not read hand well but he is not a total brain damaged Nam war vet. If he can bet his hand a certain amount because he think that "this" particular holding worth "that" price it tells us that he is capable of a certain analysis about where he think he stand with that holding. And given that assumption, it tells us that he is probably capable of reading a board since he puts hands in certain brackets of price. Reading where your holding stands on certain runout vs. reading hand ranges is totally different imho. And that is what, i think, Ninjah wanted to say when he said that. And by his actions with his bet sizings, OMC is kind of confirming that.

    And i honestly think that even if OMC can't hand ranges read and runout read, just because he bet a certain amount in correlation with his holding we can exploit that.
    He may not read hand well but he is not a total brain damaged Nam war vet. If he can bet his hand a certain amount because he think that "this" particular holding worth "that" price it tells us that he is capable of a certain analysis about where he think he stand with that holding. And given that assumption, it tells us that he is probably capable of reading a board since he puts hands in certain brackets of price. Reading where your holding stands on certain runout vs. reading hand ranges is totally different imho. And that is what, i think, Ninjah wanted to say when he said that. And by his actions with his bet sizings, OMC is kind of confirming that.

    And i honestly think that even if OMC can't hand ranges read and runout read, just because he bet a certain amount in correlation with his holding we can exploit that.

    That's exactly what I was getting at.
  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,827 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    BadFrog1 wrote: »
    @kagey is complaining about your bet sizing, but I actually think it's quite good for the situation.

    That was my initial reaction as well, but thinking more about it, I think @kagey is actually saying that a lot of what Soto is doing depends on stacks deeper than 100BB. So while this is a fine play, it's just not the same as playing scary deep stack poker (not trying to put words in his mouth, but that's the only way I could agree with him :) )

  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,827 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Ninjah wrote: »
    I think he was concerned with my call on the flop and is a bit weary now.

    While he is "old man", I still think he's going to be more wary than weary. Maybe when he folds on the river he's also gotten a little weary :)

    This seems like a pretty standard play for a good, thinking player. I don't think you realistically could have raised any more on the turn and still had a reasonable river bet. The way you played it screams strength more than if you just shoved the turn, and if not, then you still make more money this way (than if he folds to your turn bet).

    The preflop raise is plenty I think, maybe more than enough. We've gotten into a little confusion about whether OMC "ranges" or "hand reads" or "thinks". Clearly he's at least trying to think if he's ahead or behind, and on some level he at least has to think you can have some middle cards here. So if anything, your story is actually more believable if you raise to $10 preflop, because that would be a little more normal if you were just trying to steal at a reasonable price with 76s, for example.

  • YoshYosh Red Chipper Posts: 580 ✭✭✭
    Preflop $15 is way too much IMO to risk on a steal, especially with a tight player in the blinds.

    Postflop I think this board is a bit too weak and disjointed to float often unless you have some good equity with your XX AND you think he fires once with his AK/AQ misses. On 853 rainbow, there just are not very many scary runouts vs. his range.

    You have a top end advantage but he has a massive equity advantage. His advantage trumps your advantage in a 3b pot with shallow stacks. You probably felt this effect at the pivot point in the hand. When you want to raise turn, you find that you don't have enough back to make a leveraged bet.

    In the end, I think you were lucky to get a gin river putting the 4 straight on board.
  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,827 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    I'm not sure it was the river card or the double barrel. Some tight villains won't fold to a one time possible bluff raise, but will fold when the betting gets "convincing".

    I don't think this has as much to do with ranges as it does with OMC seeing monsters. He survives his retirement years by being cautious. His investment portfolio consists more of Treasury bonds than small biotech stocks.
  • NinjahNinjah Red Chipper Posts: 1,138 ✭✭✭✭
    Yosh wrote: »
    Preflop $15 is way too much IMO to risk on a steal, especially with a tight player in the blinds.

    Postflop I think this board is a bit too weak and disjointed to float often unless you have some good equity with your XX AND you think he fires once with his AK/AQ misses. On 853 rainbow, there just are not very many scary runouts vs. his range.

    You have a top end advantage but he has a massive equity advantage. His advantage trumps your advantage in a 3b pot with shallow stacks. You probably felt this effect at the pivot point in the hand. When you want to raise turn, you find that you don't have enough back to make a leveraged bet.

    In the end, I think you were lucky to get a gin river putting the 4 straight on board.

    1) $15 was my standard opening size all day
    2) SB was tight but BB wasn't
    3) His actions on the turn indicated that he already had folding on his mind. While the 9 was a great card for the spot, there are several other river cards here that I think he'll fold on when I shove
  • OutlierOutlier Red Chipper Posts: 158 ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    As I was reading through the hand, I felt like the outcome, based on my experience, was on a razor's edge: 1) Your bluff gets through; or 2) Villain feels too pot-committed and sigh-calls off. I like your thinking, your play, your risk-taking. I do wonder, though, whether long term this play is maybe only break even. Most OMCs play so few hands that when they do, they're not folding, and I really feel like the outcome could have gone either way over 50 or 100 iterations.

    One other consideration--100 BB is often thrown around as a threshold between shallow and deep-stacked poker, but this threshold historically predicated on a 3 BB open. In other words, the playability of 100 BB stacks comes from postflop SPR based on 3x opens and calls. By opening 5x, the $250 stacks play more like 50 BB stacks than 125 BB stacks. That might be a more helpful guide in determining "true" stack depth (as players will play it).

    I think what you may have found in this hand is the bare minimum stack depth required for this play to be profitable. If effective stacks go over $300, I think this play becomes solidly profitable. Your description of OMC makes me think he would respond inelastically to your open, ie, he would fold/call/raise with the same range to a $10 open than to a $15 open. If that's true, then maybe if you open for $10, the min stack depth drops to maybe $220 or so.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,656 ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Outlier wrote: »
    I do wonder, though, whether long term this play is maybe only break even.

    We need to understand what else in our range, given this spot, we are playing like this. We won't always try to bluff OMC with air when we know he got OverP. In the process, we need to understand how OMC is playing OverP. He will most probably won't change his way of playing it, but we will. Next time we will shove river, given the same spot, but we'll have the straight or 2P+. That's how i look at the play. If OMC is always trying to land cheaply at showdown with his OverP we will value the shit out of him and throw some bluffs here and there that will make his life miserable and i'm pretty sure overall we will make profit vs him.
  • Matt BerkeyMatt Berkey Red Chipper, RCP Coach Posts: 278 ✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Don't try this at home... While your thought process is extremely in line with a leverage based strat, I think you can see mechanically it's going to fail in this situation too often. Basically, it worked due to massive mistakes by your opponent (which can be anticipated to a certain level) coupled w/a gin runout (which can be calculated precisely). When these factors meet you feel like a genius, the other 90-some percent of the time he just sigh calls.

    Point I'm trying to make is you're headed down the right path, but your execution is very ambitious. Spot construction isn't something you fall into midway through a hand, it should be calculated the second you decide to call the 3 bet. I can't think of many hands I would justifiably float on this flop in your spot because in order to float profitably here I would have to presume I can shove (either when checked to or when bet into) the turn at a fairly high frequency while maintaining some level of fold equity (coupled w/my hand equity of course). Thus my hand should be both blocking some of his likely value hands as well as have inherent equity, JTss is a good candidate (something I would still likely just fold as the spot itself isn't great being that I can only really shove a turned 9 or 7 and really none of the non-9/7 spades).

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