Poker Ramblings of cmitch

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Newborn Babies and Poker

Friday, September 30, 2005

I had an interesting night last night while I was attempting to play the $109 $20k Guarantee Tourney on Pokershare (Ultimatebet) - paying 20 places. I was sitting at 1st in chips for most of the tourney. When we got down to about 30 players I was 3rd in chips. Then all hell broke loose. My 3 year old daughter started crying (a little before midnight). I sat out and went in to check on her and calm her down - she had rolled over in her sleep and hit her hand on the wall. I get back and we are down to 26 players and I'm now around 13th in chips. I settle in ready to pick my spots and score a few chips and get back to 6th in chips with 24 remaining. Next thing I know our newborn son, Charlie, starts crying. It is my turn to feed him while my wife is getting a little sleep. No problem, I sit out again and the tourney is about to go on break. After the break I am trying to feed Charlie and click the mouse - a little hard with a baby in one hand and a bottle in the other hand. When we got down to 21 players and were hand for hand - Charlie let out a massage poop that went all over my shirt and his clothes. I had to sit out again and clean him and myself up. I come back and we are down to 20 and I am 17th in chips. I don't get any hands and wind up finishing 12th. I can't help but think that if I hadn't had such a crazy night that I would have done a lot better.

I am not complaining, I just thought that I would share same of the joys of having children.

cmitch (playing as cmitch1 on pokershare)

After a very busy week with a new baby, there hasn't been much time for poker. The number of tourneys that I play will definitely slow down for a while. During the down time (not much of it around here) I played some SNGs on Party and managed to make a small profit thanks to a few well timed 1st place finishes. I was beginning to get a little frustrated with the SNGs on Party but stuck with them. Their structure turns a lot of the SNGs into crapshoots at the end if you get a tight table. I checked back through my stats, I bubbled (4th place) five SNGs and most of the time I put my money in with the best and lost to inferior hands. So, needless to say, I am happy to make it through a few days of SNGs with a profit.

After reading a post on pocket fives about how soft the 3 table $33 tourneys on Party were I decided to dip my toes back in the the tourney world by playing one yesterday. I, also, liked the idea of playing a tourney that would be over in 2 hours. The info that I read on pocket fives about how soft they were was an understatement. By 10 minutes into the tourney, I built my chips up to about 2,000 (1,000 to start) by winning a few pots against people chasing draws. A few hands later I get JJ and call a 5xBB raise. The flop comes JAK. Original bettor immediately goes all in with AK. I call and am up to 3k in chips. I didn't look back from there and was chip leader until I won the tourney 1 hour and 45 minutes later. The payouts are a little too level at $270, $225, $180, $135, and $90, but I'll take the $270 for 1st place for my first tourney in a week.

Tonight, I decided to play two tourneys and just "sit-out" whenever Charlie woke up and needed a diaper change or to be fed.

I played the $150 NL Super Thursday tourney on Party and could never get anything going. There were just under 1,000 entries paying 100 spots. I had 1,800 chips with 75/150 blinds and get AK in the BB. The cutoff (who had been raising pratically every hand) raises 3XBB and I go all in. He calls with QJ and hits a Q and a J and I'm out in 320th place.

The second tourney that I played was the $109 on Full Tilt Poker. There were 106 entries and it paid 18 spots. A key hand came late when there were about 27 players remaining. I was sitting at the bottom of the pack but not desperate. I had about 2,800 in chips. I get dealt QQ in the BB. UTG raises 3xBB. I had only been at this new table for 4 hands but the same guy raised 3xBB every one of those four hands. I figured him for a weak ace at best. I decided to just call and try to trap him if I got a decent flop (no aces or kings). I was 100% certain that he would bet the flop no matter what if I just called preflop. If I raised preflop, I put it at about 50/50 on him folding. The flop was perfect - 257 rainbow. I check and he bet the pot. I went all in and he called with A9o. Turn and river were a blank and I'm sitting on 6k in chips in about the middle of the pack with room to work.

Another key hand came shortly after the bubble burst. I was sitting on 9k in chips (around 13th in chips out of 16). I get dealt AKo in the BB. UTG (who has me covered) raises 3x or 4x BB and I decide, I need to double up and have some chips to work with or go home. I push and he immediately calls more than half his stack with 77. A King comes on the flop and I'm at 20K in chips. I hovered around 20k in chips and went into the final table with 15k in chips. I didn't get any hands and one particular guy was going all in a lot (The Pusher). I managed to steal some chips with AKs. The next hand UTG I'm dealt 1010 and push because my stack is low relative to the blinds and I need some chips. I am guessing that I might get a call from a big stack with a weak ace, because I just made an uncontested big bet the hand before. The BB picked up AK and immediately called. The flop came 4109, Turn A, River J and I double up to about 3rd in chips with 7 remaining. I pick up a few pots here and there until we get 5 handed. The Pusher is pushing all his chips in almost every other hand. I am itching for a hand and finally wake up to AK in the SB. The Pusher pushes all his chips in (about 32k) and I call my remaining 25k in chips. The Pusher has A10o. The flop comes AJ8, Turn Q, River K. He make his straight to win the 50k+ pot and I'm out in 5th place for $795. If I win that pot, I am 2nd in chips and am confident that I would have won the tourney - The chip leader got half his chips when he was all in preflop with 44 against AA and spiked a 4 on the turn.

I am happy with my return to the tourneys and hopefully can take down 1st place in one soon. I lived and died by AK, but I got my money in with the best hand and lost to a 3 outer.


Baby cmitch is born!!!

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

 was born at 10:38 AM on 9/16/05 by C-Section.

7 lbs. 15 oz.
20 inches

Back in action!

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

After a few weeks of running REALLY bad, things have turned around and my Stars account is respectable (in my own mind) once again.

Since the beginning of August, I've been trying to avoid MTT's while focusing on low limit Sit & Go's in order to build a decent and steady online bankroll. I generally play single table $20+2 and $30+3's with the occasional $50+5, but it got so bad I was "slumming" it at the $10+1 tables. Over a period of 4 weeks (Aug. 9 - Sept. 8) I went 7 for 30 (cashes) in Sit & Go's and three of the cashes were 3rd place with only 2 wins... It was UGLY!

Cmitch and I were talking about the mental aspect of poker and how important it is to have a positive outlook during play. When things were in the basement it got to where I expected superior hands not to hold up. Mainly because THEY WEREN'T, but it's not good when you can "feel" your KK about to get cracked by KQ in a showdown. Flopped sets were getting beaten by higher sets coming on the river, River flushes against my flopped "nut" straight, and of course a few runner runner hands to hammer the nail in that much deeper.

However, since Sept. 8 I have gone 7 for 9 with 3 first place finishes. It's amazing how things can turn around so quickly. Even though it's a very small amount of play, I've noticed that my game has adjusted to a new found sense of confidence. The most apparent change is with continuation bets as they are now much easier to make against an open-check. Where as the week before I probably would have checked a missed flop, I've gotten back on track and am putting the pressure on opponents.

One hand I have to share that helped to get things back on track:

PokerStars Game #2543912556: Tournament #12392094, Hold'em No Limit - Level IV (50/100) - 2005/09/10 - 15:29:26 (ET)
Table '12392094 1' Seat #1 is the button
Seat 1: U_Delta (680 in chips)
Seat 2: loopy07 (2615 in chips)
Seat 3: vicdemeo (2885 in chips)
Seat 4: TheSh0w (1705 in chips)
Seat 6: Nait Dawg (1365 in chips) is sitting out
Seat 7: puggys39 (1965 in chips)
Seat 8: Lumpkin (2285 in chips)
loopy07: posts small blind 50
vicdemeo: posts big blind 100

*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to loopy07 [Jd Ah]
TheSh0w: folds
Nait Dawg: folds
puggys39: folds
Lumpkin: folds
U_Delta: raises 580 to 680 and is all-in
loopy07: raises 1935 to 2615 and is all-in
vicdemeo: folds

*** FLOP *** [Qs Td Qd]*** TURN *** [Qs Td Qd] [8d]
*** RIVER *** [Qs Td Qd 8d] [9d]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
loopy07: shows [Jd Ah] (a straight flush, Eight to Queen)
U_Delta: shows [5d Ad] (a flush, Ace high)
loopy07 collected 1460 from pot

*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 1460 Rake 0
Board [Qs Td Qd 8d 9d]
Seat 1: U_Delta (button) showed [5d Ad] and lost with a flush, Ace high
Seat 2: loopy07 (small blind) showed [Jd Ah] and won (1460) with a straight flush, Eight to Queen
Seat 3: vicdemeo (big blind) folded before Flop
Seat 4: TheSh0w folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 6: Nait Dawg folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 7: puggys39 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 8: Lumpkin folded before Flop (didn't bet)

Flopped a ROYAL FLUSH!!!

Sunday, September 11, 2005

I flopped a Royal Flush in the rebuy tourney to the WCOOP #8 after the rebuy period was over and my opponent turned a boat. A hand like this doesn't come along very often. See hand history below:

PokerStars Game #xx: Tournament #xx, Hold'em No Limit - Level VI (100/200) - 2005/09/11 - 00:42:07 (ET)
Seat #2 is the button
Seat 1: nickyben (10200 in chips)
Seat 2: TM81MBO (10275 in chips)
Seat 3: salp357 (10870 in chips)
Seat 4: PJWGUNIT (16615 in chips)
Seat 5: StevieJT (16930 in chips)
Seat 6: Mogilni (6870 in chips)
Seat 7: sportingimag (13595 in chips)
Seat 8: CERTIN (4135 in chips)
salp357: posts small blind 100
PJWGUNIT: posts big blind 200
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to sportingimag [Kh Jh]
StevieJT: folds
Mogilni: folds
sportingimag: raises 400 to 600
CERTIN: calls 600
nickyben: folds
TM81MBO: folds
salp357: folds
*** FLOP ***[Qh Th Ah]
sportingimag: bets 200
CERTIN: calls 200
*** TURN ***[Qh Th Ah] [Td]
sportingimag: bets 400
CERTIN: raises 400 to 800
sportingimag: raises 400 to 1200
CERTIN: raises 2135 to 3335 and is all-in
sportingimag: calls 2135
*** RIVER *** [Qh Th Ah Td] [8s]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
sportingimag: shows [Kh Jh] (a Royal Flush)
CERTIN: shows [Qs Qd] (a full house, Queens full of Tens)
sportingimag collected 8570 from pot
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 8570 Rake 0 Board [Qh Th Ah Td 8s]
Seat 1: nickyben folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 2: TM81MBO (button) folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 3: salp357 (small blind) folded before Flop
Seat 4: PJWGUNIT (big blind) folded before Flop
Seat 5: StevieJT folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 6: Mogilni folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 7: sportingimag showed [Kh Jh] and won (8570) with a Royal Flush
Seat 8: CERTIN showed [Qs Qd] and lost with a full house, Queens full of Tens

Katrina Relief Tourney on UB & $50 NL on Stars

Saturday, September 10, 2005

I had a busy day yesterday. I had to take the day off from work because I was getting a new A/C put into my house and having a new sleeper couch delivered. After a very long and hot day(A/C was disconnected for most of the day while they were putting in a new one), I decided to play a couple of tourneys.

The first tourney that I played was a $25+$25 Katrina Relief Tourney on I haven't played at UB for a while because they have had some server issues that caused disconnects and seem to cater most of their tourneys toward Aruba - not going to Aruba this year because baby is on the way. :-) UB used to be the only site that I played and after playing last night I remember why. The software is awesome, the people are great, and it has a home game feeling. I will have to start playing on UB more often. The tourney had just under 200 entries and paid 20 spots. I was freerolling late when I knocked out P0ker H0 to collect a $50 bounty. The tourney paid 20 spots and there were a lot of horrible players in it because of it being a charity tourney. I was doing pretty well until I tangled with the chip leader at my table. He was very aggressive and making some really, really loose calls. He had gotten very lucky several times. I made a pot sized raise UTG with AKs and the aggressive big stack went all in. I had seen him make this same move with AK-A10, and KQ, so I decided to take my chances at having a huge stack. He had put half his stack in with 44. His 44 held up and I was out around 40th. I was shocked that he bet so much of his stack with 44, but I guess I should have expected it. Oh well, I had fun and will probably start playing at UB again.

At 10 PM, I decided to play the $50+$5 NL tourney on PokerStars. There were 461 entries with 45 places paying. I had about 3,000 chips at the first break with 220 players remaining. As the tourney went on, I decided to play very tight. I made sure the table thought that I was playing extremely tight and thought that I was trying to hang on to make the money. It worked out well for me. I made some big re-raises and opening bets in position followed by continuation bets that paid off. As we got near the money, I was barely hanging on. I saw AQs UTG and moved all in for the last of my chips - I had about 5xBB in chips. A guy with A5s called off half his chips to almost triple me up including that antes and blinds. This allowed me to coast into the money a few hands later. A key hand came late, the blinds were 400/800 with 50 antes and I got KQc in the small blind. I had 8,200 chips. One guy limps, I call, SB checks. Flop is 4c5c2s. Check, Check, Check. Turn is the beautiful Jc. I check, BB bets 1,600, limper calls, I moved all in for another 5,800 hoping that I might get a call from someone holding the Ac or just take down the pot right there. BB folds. Limper thinks for a second and calls with Js10c and I'm sitting on 20k in chips.

I gradually increased my stack as we got down to 18. I stole the blinds with KJs by raising 3x the BB when we were down to 16 and the blinds were pretty huge. The very next hand, I get dealt AA UTG and raise 3x BB. My thinking was that since I had just won the blinds and antes uncontested that someone might try to push back this time. I was right. The SB made a huge bet and I waited for about 10 seconds and push all in. He immediately called with AK and I doubled up to around 75k. I had a pretty good table when we were down to 12. Everyone was pretty passive and I was picking up chips by raising and it was folded to my BB several times. When we were down to 10, I picked up AK and raised 4x BB. A guy with about 22k total in chips vs. my 76k went all in. I called. He had AJ. I was in great shape until the J on the river. I win that hand and I'm 2nd in chips at the final table.

A few hands later we are at the final table and I have about 60k in chips. My goals for the tourney were make the money, make the final table, and then take 1st. I had made the final table and was only going to play for 1st. The blinds were 3k/6k with 300 antes. Two times short stacks were all in with the worst hand against other players and managed to drag the pot. A few hands in, I get AK in the cutoff. UTG (big stack) limps. Folded around to me. I raise to 24k (about the size of the pot). BB thinks and then goes all in. Limper folds. I have to call my last 35k into a 100k pot. I thought for a minute and decided that I couldn't fold and I came to win. I called and he had QQ. QQ held up and I'm out in 9th for $391.85.

I was playing to win and put the last of my chips as a 43%+/- underdog getting 3-1 odds on my money. So, I can't complain.

cmitch - sportingimag

I took the afternoon off from work so that I could play the WCOOP Event #5 $200 NL with rebuys. I didn't have much luck during the rebuy period and had exactly 8,000 chips at the 1st break. One of the reasons that I wanted to play this event was because all the people that would be playing and wouldn't be properly funded. My theory proved true and could be seen by looking at the fact that 2,146 entered the tourney and 1,800 where remaining at the the 1st break. Of the 1,800 left at the 1st break, only 1,200 added-on. If there is one thing that I can't stress enough about rebuy tourneys it's You need at least 5 buy-ins availabe, preferably 9. You don't have to be a rebuy maniac, but you need the funds available. There will be times during the rebuy period that your flopped set/nut straight, etc. loses to a guy catching a flush on the river. Have your account properly funded for a rebuy or don't play it. OK, enough about that.

After the 1st break, I steadily increases my stack. I called a 3xBB raise with 67s and the flop came 477 - two spades. Checked to me, I bet 500 and get called. Turn is a 4. I figure I pretty much have a lock on the hand and don't want to scare off an over pair, AKs/AQs, or AKo. The river is perfect - an Ace. 3,300 is bet into me. I raise all-in and am called by AKo doubling me up to almost 16k.

Another key hand came during the 4th hour against a very aggressive player that was raising every other hand preflop. (Just the kind of guy that you want at your table when you get a big hand.) Blinds are 100/200 w/25 ante. I am dealt 44 in the big blind. Pot is raised to 600 and 2 callers. I call the additional 400 to see a flop. The flop is perfect....9d 4c 10c. I am little worried about a flush draw and plan to check-raise. It is checked around, which is kind of strange because there are a couple of very, very aggressive guys in the hand. I guess that one of them has something they consider a big hand and is hoping to trap. The turn is a harmless 5s. I decided to bet 1,600 into the 2,600 pot. Fold, Fold, Aggressive guy raises it to 6,400. I put him either on a straight or flush draw (in hindsight maybe an overpair or he thought I was trying to buy the pot) and moved all-in. He thought for a second and folded. My chip stack was now a respectable 39k.

My stack swung between 30k and 39k for a long time without much of note happening. I was around 30k after laying down QQ on a AAK flop. A few hands later, I am on the button with AKs and with 200/400 blinds there are 4 limpers (very common at the current table). I bet the pot hoping to get everyone to fold and the short stacked SB goes all in for another 1,600. Folds around to me and I call. He has KK and it holds up. I am down to 25k in chips.

A while later, I have 22k in chips - there are some ridiculous bullies at my table. I am trying to be patient and find a spot to double up, but the blinds are now at 600/1200 w/ antes. We are getting close to the money and a couple of the big stacks are trying to take advantage of that. I get QQ in the small blind. UTG (huge stack raising every hand) raises it to 3,600. It folds around to me. I have a few options. First, I consider just calling and going all in on a flop that doesn' contain a K or A. Second, I could raise 3,600 and have over 1/3rd of my stack committed against a guy that is going to represent a big hand no matter what. Third option, go all-in and take down the current pot or have the bully call me with a marginal hand and double up. I went with option 3. The BB immediately goes all-in with his 40k. Bully folds. Me - QQ, BB - AKs. Flop has a King and I'm out. 288th with 225 getting paid.

I am not upset about not making the money. I am very happy with my play. I feel like I played almost perfect poker after the rebuy period. I made some big laydowns and 1 or 2 well timed big bluffs when I felt my opponent didn't have a hand. I squeezed the most chips that I could out of my big hands. I got my chips in with the best hand at the end and it didn't hold up. If the QQ holds up I'm sitting with an above average stack and a couple of big stacks that will pay off the big hands and the money right around the corner. I know that poker is not an exact science and sometimes you just have to roll with the punches.

cmitch - sportingimag

WCOOP #1 - 212th out of 3,062 (ITM)

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Well, I was able to play in WCOOP Event #1 - $530 NL tourney along with 3,061 other players. I entered with the W$ that I had left plus a pretty good run in some heads-up sngs. 6+ hours later, I finished 212th (ahead of 2,850 others) for $1,071.70. I was disappointed considering my start, but am happy with finishing in the money (324 places paid). I didn't see many cards for the first hour but built up a few chips. I managed to work my way into the top 20 during the 3rd hour (with about 19k in chips) when I flopped a flush with KQc and got a guy to put all his chips in with the Ac and luckily he didn't catch. The next few hours, I saw AK once and had to lay it down to a huge raise on the flop (that I didn't hit) from a really, really tight player. I lost with 1010 to A8o with an ace on the river for a big hit. I picked up the blinds with QQ once. Other than that, the best hand I saw was A10s for 2 hours.

As we got close to the bubble, I went completely card dead and only managed to steal a few blinds to keep my stack out of danger. First hand after the bubble burst and everyone was guaranteed at least $700, I get AK in the cutoff and move all-in. I am called by QQ in the SB and when an Ace comes on the turn, I double up to $17k. I didn't get any cards and the big stacks were pushing. I get blinded down to around 9k with 800/1600 blinds and get A9 in the cutoff. I push all-in and the SB goes all-in behind me with AK - and that's all she wrote. 212th for $1k - gg me.

So the WCOOP is off the a pretty good start for me. I am happy that I cashed in Event #1 for a good profit (although would have liked to have done better). Next event that I will be able to play is Event #5, the NL rebuy event. Hopefully, I can finish a lot higher in that event.

Playing in my last WCOOP satellite on PokerStars before Event #1 starts later today...

$5.50+rebuy: Top 13 get a seat.

A few hands before the second break (blinds are 200/400) with about 11,000 in chips I'm in second position with QQ. UTG (18,000 in chips) limps and I raise to 1,800. Folds around to the limper and he makes it 4,000 to go. I put him on AK, AQ or possibly even 10/10 or JJ and go all in. Unfortunately he has KK and I'm D-O-N-E.

Still hoping to get some of those W$ in order to play in an event over the next few weeks... we shall see.


BAD BEAT City Tonight!!

Friday, September 02, 2005

I played a ton of WCOOP sats between 8:00 pm and now tonight. I didn't win any W$ and only have a little bit of real dollars (for bubbling) to show for it. I finished on the bubble in one of the tourneys for W$1k when my nut flush lost to river full house - I win that hand and I am a sure thing for the W$1k. I, also, lost a lot of chips when a donkey who was raising every hand called my all-in over the top of him with his K9o vs my AKs - 9 on the flop and thats all she wrote.

I got knocked out of one tourney late in the SB, guy to my right is raising every time he is on the button. I have about 10k in chips with 600/1200 blinds and button raises to 3,600. I look down at 1010 and go all in, I have him covered by about 2k in chips. The BB immediately goes all in and the button immediately calls. BB - AQo, Button - A9o, me -1010. Flop has one of the remaining two aces, turn is a 9, river a blank and I'M OUT!!!

The last W$ tourney that I played tonight was the $33 rebuy to main event. It paid 3 W$2,500 seats and 4-16 got $165. I was about 18th in chips with 22 left and the blinds were getting ridiculous. I had 9,600 in chips in BB with 600/1200 blinds and the button raises to 3,600. I go all in with A10s and he calls leaving himself only 3k in chips with A8o - 8 comes on the flop.

Glass half full side of me says - I still have a respectable amount of W$ for having such a horrendous night and I did turn some of the W$ into real $$. So i got my chips in with the best hands almost every time and made some great reads, but have very little to show for it, but........................ .that's pooooooooker!!!!

W$ update - W$437 plus $227 cash from bubbling.

Live and direct... from Orlando to Vegas for the 2005 WSOP:
Runner Runner Joe, James, Cmitch, Josh, Josh's friend, me, Dave

I will post a message here, but I feel like I am talking to myself. Does anyone really read poker blogs? I guess one of us will have to make it to a TV final table for this to ever get read by anyone.

Update on poker for me - I plan on playing as many WCOOP sats as possible between now and Sunday so that I can play a couple of the events. I currently have W$1,249 in my account and will update my progress on Sunday. I plan on trying to play the $500 event #1 on Sunday and the $200NL rebuy event #5 on Thursday. I probably won't have time for any other events, but we will see.....


Welcome to the inaugural posting of the Opoker blog.

I suppose the purpose of this blog is for me to discuss... well, more like COMPLAIN about poker. Woohoo... ANOTHER poker blog! Just what we all need :)

Without any further suspense:

Went to the Hard Rock in Tampa yesterday to play in the Weds. $85+15 am tourney. As what seems to be the case there more often than not, I wasn't able to get much going early on when you have to build a stack. I won a few hands pushing over the top of 3 or 4 early limpers to take down marginal pots, but otherwise it was sitting and waiting as the blinds creeped up to desparation short stack "all-in" levels. Poker Dan and the other Paul from UPC were there as well. Dan and I were at the same table and he chipped up by flopping a set with JJ in the hole twice. He was out soon after I was though... didn't see what happened.

They have weekly $200+40's and a monthly $500+50 (with 30 min. levels I believe). That would be a much more workable structure at the No Fold 'em gala known as the Tampa Seminole Hard Rock.