Long time no post! Right now I am in Buenos Aires, Argentina, which is a great city. It is big. It is sunny. And there is a ton to do. I haven't been exploring the city every day, some days I have just been lounging around cafes and whatnot, so I feel like I have to come back. 

Last blog I mentioned how I made a good quit in the live 2/4 game in Chile after the worst players busted from the table. That really helped me out the next day when I went to play fresh.

Here in Buenos Aires there is a casino that is on a boat, I get the impression that it either is, or once was, illegal for there to be a casino not on a boat. My first session was at 2/4 USD, this time it was 10/20 Argentinian Pesos, in Chile it was 1.000/2,000 Chilean pesos. All these pesos are hard to keep track of! I can't even remember what the Colombian pesos were worth, but I remember having a million of them in my pocket, so it can't be that much. 

I was riding a high coming in as I had more than paid for the Chile portion of my trip over the course of a few sessions. In Buenos Aires, I was rudely awaken. The first hand I played actually, I got min raised on the river and had to bet/fold trip nines. 

I completed 97s in the small blind and the big blind checked. We saw a five way flop, 943 all different suits. I bet out $16 into $20 and only one player called. Never having been to this casino before I had no idea about any of the players' tendencies. On the 5 of spades turn, which brought a flush draw (I had hearts) we both checked. The river was the nine of spades, I lead out pretty big, $40 into $52 and got min raised to $80. I gave it up and folded without worrying, but of course, you always wonder in spots like that. When the backdoor flush gets there, there are better trips, and straights as well, I am not too worried about being bluffed. 

Later I would get quite the revenge against this player. He had been playing a ton of hands and I was down almost a buy-in on the session. He opened to $30 in early position after someone else had limped. This was the standard raise size for the game. I three-bet in the hijack seat to $80 with AQ of clubs. He called and we saw a 448 flop with two diamonds. He checked and I decided to check back. The turn was an offsuit 5. He checked and I checked again. There is about $165 in the pot on the river, which was the T of spades. He moved all-in pretty quickly for $220 or so. 

Out of habit, I didn't beat him into the pot. But honestly I didn't think about too much in the tank, just that, I should be thinking, and not be making an instant call. But I was pretty certain I was good really often. So I called and he showed A5 of diamonds. This is a realy classic mistake live players make, wasting their equity with checks instead of bets, and then representing nothing on the river. 

This set things off for this player. And I mean off. He emptied somewhere between 2.5k and 3k onto the table over the next orbit, before leaving. The final hand he got all in on TT4hh with Q3 of hearts against the guy on my direct left's KT. The player on my direct left was the best villain at the table and it was pretty clear who everyone was cheering for. Unfortunately no heart came and the villain decided to leave, I think, because he had no more chips to simply pull out of his pocket and plunk on the table. 

I was stuck a little bit when I decided to make a large error. A player limped into the pot and I isolated to $30 with ace eight offsuit. The good player, with king ten from the other hand, three bet me to $50, which isn't even a min raise. The dealer didn't notice/care about this and neither did I because I took it as a pretty large tell. 

Earlier, in fact, one of the first hands we played against one another, I opened ace queen under the gun and he three-bet me the minimum with what turned out to be pocket tens. I fodled and he showed TT, which was much wider than I had considered him capable. Afterwards he explained to me that he needed to raise or else "everyone would call" and we would see a flop "six or seven" ways. This is very understandable logic, whether I agree with it or not. 

So when he three-bet me to $50, this seemed clear to me that he has similar intentions. I certainly ruled out hands like KK and AA. That's all well and good, I think. But there is a reason that I don't four-bet bluff in live cash games, like ever. The reason is no one ever folds. So I four-bet to $205 total. Let's look at the math of this. I am risking $175 to win around $85. I need my opponent to fold 67% of the time, or two-thirds of the time. This is a really bad risk/reward for me. If his range is 99-QQ and includes some AQ, he needs to fold good hands. We were about $700 deep to start the hand and there are reasons to believe this player would take a flop. 

To make a long story short my opponent tanked for three minutes. He began talking to himself and to the table. He pulled out all the tricks, including counting out chips to see my reaction, balking and so on. I actually stared at one spot on the felt and became more comfortable as time went on. One is because I became more placid in my routine of being still, but also because people almost always fold after taking so long and especially talking, which is essentially giving away the strength of their hand, or lack thereof. 

I was very surprised then, when he called. 

The flop came 732 rainbow. I have no hand and no equity, but my opponent had a capped range, which I felt was JJ at best and could include AK. So I continuation bet $150 with a plan of moving all in on the turn. My opponent again, tanked in agony, talked out loud about his discomfort, and settled on a min raise to $300. I was forced to fold in a huge pot. 

He claimed to have pocket nines and was raising to "see where he is at." Sigh. 

First and foremost, my four-bet preflop is really bad, since he is unlikely to be three-betting 88. This means that the bottom of his three-bet range is 99. And he didn't fold 99 to my four-bet. And I need him to fold 67% of the hands he three-bets! That's just to break even. 

So this was a very large mistake and a pretty big misread to try and run a huge bluff. Thankfully he raised the flop, because I could have potentially shoved the turn with seven percent equity against a range that was never going to fold. 

Suffice to say, I stood up and quit the very next hand. An easy decision to make a good quit, but for different reasons than the last time.

Buenos Diaz