I’ve been posting some stories about hands and situations that have gone my way. But, as we all know, poker doesn’t always go your way and last night it really didn’t for me. A lot of the ugliness occurred in the space of a little more than 1 orbit.
The first two hands involved an older gentleman who joined the game about an hour before and proceeded to play nearly every hand and spew money all over the table. I’ll call him “Spewy.” Our friend Spewy and I had tangled not long after he sat down. I had A-10 suited and raised to $10 from late position after Spewy had limped with K-10 off. He called and then called my $15 c-bet on a 9 high flop. After that, I shut down, but lost the hand when he rivered one of the 3 kings left. Spewy was already on his second $200 buyin and had added at least $100 other than that when the weird orbit started, so he was into the game for at least $500 and had about $110 in front of him. It was hard to tell exactly how much because Spewy liked to just randomly stack chips, so not only were his piles of chips not a single size, they were mixtures of $1 and $5 chips. Normally people might complain about this but, because Spewy was donating so much to the game, I don’t think anyone cared at all what his chip stack currently looked like. And besides, most of it was getting put into a pot soon anyhow, so organizing it was just a waste of time.
The first hand, Spewy limped again, I raised to $10 on the button with QQ, and he called. As he did this he said, “I’m not sure I want to tangle with you again.” I reminded him that the one time we had tangled; he had won the pot so maybe it was good for him if we played more pots together. The flop was Q-10-7 with 2 spades and Spewy bet out $20, I put him on a flush draw and raised to $65 with my set of queens. I did not realize that Spewy only had a total of $93 left after his $20 bet. He, of course, called and as he did, he said “you better hope a spade doesn’t come.” The turn was the 8 of diamonds. Spewy checked and not realizing exactly how much he had left, but knowing I had him covered, I announced all in. Spewy called. I tabled my hand, but he did not. The river was the 5 of spades and Spewy won his biggest pot of the night and the dealer told me I owed him another $38 which is when I found out exactly how much I had lost. What no one realized, including Spewy, is that on the turn he was actually ahead because he had the 9-6 of spades and so the 10-7-8 on board made him a straight. Had he not hit the spade, I am 100% certain that Spewy would have mucked his winning straight without ever turning it over. Needless to say, I was steaming a bit.
Two hands later, Spewy was at it again from the small blind. It was a multiway limped pot, I think 5 handed. The flop was Q-4-Q and Spewy fires out $20. He gets one caller from early position and everyone folds. The turn is another 4, making the board Q-4-Q-4. Spewy bets out $50 and his opponent shoves for about $100 more. Spewy snap calls. His opponent turns over Q-J suited for the top full house and our friend Spewy tables… you guessed it, 3-3. Yes, Spewy apparently mis-read his hand again thinking that he had 4-4 and so he wound up snap calling $100 holding an under pair to the 44 on board. So, when he called, he had Q-Q-4-4-3 and he was behind 5 high – although he chop outs against that hand. The only hand Spewy could beat at that point was 2-2. And even against 2-2, the guy could fill up with another 2 on the river and would get a chop against Spewy unless one of the two remaining 3s filled him up. And, now I was steaming even more and I think it had to be obvious.
About one orbit later, I was involved in a hand without Spewy, who in this case managed to find the fold button. I had 7-8 of clubs and raised to $10 in early position. I got 3 callers. The flop was 5-6-2 with 2 diamonds, giving me an open ended straight draw, although I’m not in love with my hand if a third diamond hits. But, I took the lead in the hand preflop, I flopped an open ended straight draw, and I knew that 6 high missed most callers -- unless they had a diamond draw. Given all of that, I made a C-bet of $20. The next player to act raised it to $65. Now, a little bit about this guy. He was in seat one opposite the dealer from me and had a sport coat and button down shirt on, but no tie. He had been at the table for about 30 to 45 minutes. In that time, I am fairly sure that he had not played a single hand. I’m also sure that other than ordering a bottle of water from the cocktail waitress, he had never spoken a word. In other words, he was as tight and conservative as could be. He was the “anti-Spewy”. It folded back to me and I realized that this opponent could literally only be playing a big pair or a set in this manner, so I was about to muck my hand. As I was silently cursing my luck, I realized that my opponent had only $20 behind after his raise. Even though I knew I was steaming at this point, something in my brain screamed “WAIT DUMMY. THE MATH IS RIGHT TO CHASE!!!” I paused, took a breath, and asked my opponent how much he had left. He confirmed that it was $20. I looked at the pot, which had already $125 in it and thought, “It costs me $65 more to try to win $145. Damn, the math is right to chase.” I announced all in and my opponent called. I tabled my draw and after I missed, he turned over KK.
I’m sure at that moment, almost everyone at the table thought I had turned into another Spewy. But, I came home a double checked the math. After doing that, I know that with 8 outs to the straight and my backdoor 2 pair draws, I had exactly the correct odds to chase. If my opponent were capable of raising with an ace high diamond draw, then I was getting a really good price. Unfortunately, it wasn’t my night and even though the math was right, the cards didn’t cooperate.
P.S. Within a half hour, Spewy had been felted, bought in for another $200, and lost that.