What to Lead On Weak Next Call

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jblowery
Posts: 67
Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2018 10:43 am

What to Lead On Weak Next Call

Post by jblowery » Mon Sep 09, 2019 10:40 am

These are typically the weakest calls from 1st seat, after the dealer passes. Let's say you only have a couple of next and no side aces. Would you lead "next" first or one of your junk cards? I think this is a tough one because you don't know for sure that your partner is strong in that suite. I guess he/she needs to be though if you are going to get a point.



RedDuke
Posts: 268
Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2018 2:22 am

Post by RedDuke » Mon Sep 09, 2019 11:33 am

First of all, there are two reasons to call next:

1. Your partner is more likely to have a bower in that color than the dealer or second seat because if the opposition had a bower in that color then they probably would have accepted the turn card.
2. You don't want second seat or the dealer to go alone.

The first reason is very likely if a jack was turned down. In that scenario, it's pretty likely that the opponents have some serious strength in reverse next. It's a generally accepted rule here that you don't turn down a jack if you have any other cards in the same suit so if that happens, it's a safe bet that the dealer is loaded to the teeth with reverse next.

A next call works better against aggressive players. In my experience, and in that of many other players on these forums that have played a lot of games, most euchre players turn down a lot of hands that could have easily made a point. In some cases, you may even see someone turn down a card when they're holding something like left+1 and a side ace. Against players like this, a next call is less likely to be successful.

Now, with those caveats out of the way, how weak of a next call did you make? If you're holding a couple of next, then your best lead is probably going to be one of those cards, hoping that your partner can take it with a bower. Even if your partner can't take the trick, such a lead would still clear the enemy out of trump, which will hopefully let your partner make any aces that he holds good later in the hand.

If you're holding total trash, say something like this:

(Card_10-D) (Card_Q-S) (Card_10-S) (Card_Q-C) (Card_9-C)

where diamonds is trump, I'd probably lead one of the queens hoping that either my left-hand opponent takes it (giving me last play on the next trick) or that my partner does. Ultimately, the first lead will depend on how many trump I'm holding. Two or three, I'm leading trump. In the example above, turn one of the queens into the nine of diamonds and I'm leading the nine.

If you're in a scenario where the opposition is holding a hand that's going to euchre you no matter what (say they're holding all of the aces and jacks - your partner has total junk too), then you probably just saved your team from a 4 point loner sweep from second seat or the dealer.

Wes (aka the legend)
Posts: 279
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2018 3:03 pm

Post by Wes (aka the legend) » Wed Sep 18, 2019 7:48 pm

jblowery wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 10:40 am
These are typically the weakest calls from 1st seat, after the dealer passes. Let's say you only have a couple of next and no side aces. Would you lead "next" first or one of your junk cards? I think this is a tough one because you don't know for sure that your partner is strong in that suite. I guess he/she needs to be though if you are going to get a point.
If I have no voids I always lead trump from this configuration. If I have at least 1 void I follow the recommendations from this site:
In a hand where you only hold two small cards in next but no power, try leading an off suit that you think your partner may be able to trump. You may need the trump to make your point.

Source:https://ohioeuchre.com/E_next.php
The idea of "leading an off suit that you think your partner may be able to trump" doesn't really make sense to me. It's mostly just guessing. The main thing to do here is to make sure you don't lead the suit that your opponents are likely to trump, and that suit is the turn down suit. Never lead that if you can help it. Other than that I tend to veer towards leading singleton green cards figuring if my partner has the Ace of that suit he is least likely to get trumped, and if my partner is void in that suit he is least likely to get overtrumped.

I actually talked about this topic in another thread, I'll just copy/paste that and put it here (at first I talk about the Right + 1 scenario but then I digress to this topic):
Wes (aka the legend) wrote:
Thu Aug 01, 2019 8:58 pm
Richardb02 wrote:
Tue Jul 30, 2019 10:05 pm
(Card_J-D) down Seat Round 2 Down 5-7 Aggressive & Equal Players
(Card_J-H) (Card_9-H) (Card_9-C) (Card_10-D) (Card_Q-D)
Would you call Next?
If you call Next, what would you lead and what is your plan to play your cards?
Sometimes the correct option presents itself due to the fact that your other options are THAT toxic. This is one of those times.

Firstly, good call. Absolutely critical. When the dealer turns down a red card and you have NO SPADES and one baby club you should be scared to death to pass. Order this hand at ANY score. The only ostensibly debatable scores are when your team is up 9-8 or tied 8-8. At those scores you have to tighten up your Next calls a bit. Calling Next after all is a defensive strategy. Playing strong defense loses most of its value when getting euchred = game over. HOWEVER, your marginal holding of Right + 1 and nothing else is juuuuuuust strong enough offensively to justify calling at 9-8/8-8. You'll score a point often enough + prevent the 2 seat from a closeout black call often enough to make up for the game losing euchres.

But you have to play it right. What are the toxic options I refer to that we must avoid here. Well, number one, we never wanna lead the turn-downed suit here, that toxic lead will almost surely give your enemy the first trick and this could seriously cripple your team if your partner is sitting on the Ad--which he is statistically more likely to have since your opponents turned down a diamond. Ok so don't so that.

The next lead you don't wanna make is leading the Right bower. You are marginal with 2 trump and no off aces, and we cannot be sure what our partner holds. Although it's true that your enemy passing in the first round positively correlates with your partner having offsuit aces that is certainly not enough information to take on faith. With your marginal holding and no off aces to promote the last thing you want to happen is for your team to blow two trump on one lead.

Well that leaves only one option left. It's a pretty meh/neutral option, but the clear best option nonetheless. Lead the (Card_9-C).

By taking this line you maximize whatever ruffing power your partner might have, I.E. you're preserving his trump to hopefully trump in if he has a void somewhere, and by taking this line your partner now doesn't have to have much for you guys to eke out a point. Sometimes your partner can have no trump and just the (Card_A-C) and you guys can still make it. I.E. his Ac walks on the first lead and he leads back a spade that you trump in with your (Card_9-H) and bingo you guys score a point. Or your partner could have just one trump, the Ah, and no off aces and you guys eke out a point due to your 9h trumping your void and your partner playing the Ah later, and your Jh now secures a point. By not leading trump you open up all kinds of opportunities for your team to eke out a point with not very much and that's PRECISELY want you want to try to do when you have a marginal offensive hand like Right + 1 and nothing else.

Here's a quote from this website on a situation similar but not perfectly analogous to your example:
In a hand where you only hold two small cards in next but no power, try leading an off suit that you think your partner may be able to trump. You may need the trump to make your point.

Source:https://ohioeuchre.com/E_next.php
I believe the above extrapolates seamlessly to Right + 1 but no power scenarios. In fact it actually fits "Right + 1 but no power scenarios" better than the actual advice for two small trump!

For example, let's say your team is up 3-0. The dealer just turned down the (Card_Q-S)

You're in the 1 seat with (Card_K-C) (Card_10-C) (Card_K-S) (Card_10-S) (Card_9-H)

You correctly call next knowing that passing with this holding is unacceptable given that you block nothing and have a nearly dead hand on a red call. Ok what should you lead? Well according to this site you should lead the 9h. Interesting to note I have talked about this spot with the 2 best players in my euchre tournament (one of them was Tbolt65). They both say to lead trump (in this case the Tc). I frankly am not sure what's best here. It isn't as clear to me like the Right + 1 scenario.

With the Right + 1 but no power scenario you have juuust enough offensive strength where you don't really need that much help from your partner, so it's best to not lead trump to maximize whatever help he may have. With the 2 low trump scenario, now it's clear you need your partner's help as it's clear you actually have to hit your partner somewhat to score a point. If's that's the case, that's a decent argument for going against the recommendations of this site and leading a low trump from KcTc example hand.

But that said, I'm still not convinced. I'ved tried playing the two low trump example both ways, and frankly I'm not sure what comes out ahead. Sometimes not leading trump saves my team, sometimes it hurts my team, and vice versa. If I had that mythical euchre simulator this would be one of the first spots I would try out.

For now tho if I do have a hand like (Card_K-C) (Card_10-C) (Card_K-S) (Card_10-S) (Card_9-H)

I play it like the site recommends, I lead the (Card_9-H)

However if we change our hand to this:

(Card_K-C) (Card_10-C) (Card_K-S) (Card_9-D) (Card_9-H)

I would absolutely head low trump EVERY TIME.

With no voids, and thus no chance to trump in on a fresh suit we REALLY need to hit our partner, and when that's the case it's imperative to lead trump right away. So at the very least I strictly disagree with this site's recommendation on how to play two low trump + no off suit power next calls, becuz it actually matters whether you have a void or not.

Wes (aka the legend)
Posts: 279
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2018 3:03 pm

Post by Wes (aka the legend) » Wed Sep 18, 2019 8:06 pm

RedDuke wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 11:33 am
If you're holding total trash, say something like this:

(Card_10-D) (Card_Q-S) (Card_10-S) (Card_Q-C) (Card_9-C)

where diamonds is trump, I'd probably lead one of the queens hoping that either my left-hand opponent takes it (giving me last play on the next trick) or that my partner does. Ultimately, the first lead will depend on how many trump I'm holding. Two or three, I'm leading trump. In the example above, turn one of the queens into the nine of diamonds and I'm leading the nine.
If I only have 1 trump I follow the recommendation of Natty Bumppo:
"And if I call “next” with only one trump – which I do not at all infrequently – I lead it, whether it is the nine, the right bower, or anything in between, including the unguarded left bower – because my partner probably needs it and expects it, if for no other reason."

--Natty Bumppo

http://borf_books.tripod.com/ecolum22.htm#Nextwhy
If you're calling with 1 trump it's basically a pure donation. You need to hit your partner HARD to make a point. If that's the case, assume your partner HAS that strong hand and do what you would normally do if your partner called from 3rd. Lead trump.

RedDuke
Posts: 268
Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2018 2:22 am

Post by RedDuke » Thu Sep 19, 2019 3:18 am

Of course, there's always the possible case here where the guy in second seat is holding something like this:

(Card_J-C) (Card_J-D) (Card_J-S) (Card_J-H) (Card_A-H)

and turns down a red card as trump. If that's the case, not much you can do.

Richardb02
Posts: 173
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2018 8:57 pm

Post by Richardb02 » Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm

I just played this hand and it reflected this post:
Seat 1 Round 2 Score 1-4 Ave & Equal players
(Card_Q-C) Down
(Card_10-D) (Card_9-C) (Card_10-C) (Card_Q-S) (Card_K-S)
I called Next (Spades). I had no choice, in my mind, and according to this post.
I lead one of my trump, which went against Wes' current favorite lead.
The result:
(Card_Q-S) (Card_A-S) (Card_10-S) (Card_J-S)
S4, Dealer won the trick & lead:
(Card_A-D) (Card_10-D) (Card_9-D) (Card_J-D)
S4, Dealer won the trick & lead:
(Card_K-C) (Card_9-C) (Card_K-D) (Card_A-C)
S3, Partner won the trick & lead:
(Card_Q-D) (Card_10-H) (Card_K-S) (Card_A-H)
S1, Me, I won the trick and lead:
(Card_10-C) (Card_9-S) (Card_Q-H) (Card_J-H)
My questions:
1. Does anything jump out at you about how this plan played out?
2. Would this hand have played out better if I had lead (Card_10-D) ?
Last edited by Richardb02 on Sat Sep 28, 2019 12:41 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Wes (aka the legend)
Posts: 279
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2018 3:03 pm

Post by Wes (aka the legend) » Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:31 pm

Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
1. Does anything jump out at you about how this plan played out?
Yes, you guys guys are playing with a 25 card deck given that your partner has two (Card_Q-D)

:)
Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
2. Would this hand have played out better if I had lead (Card_10-D) ?
Not sure yet. You'll have to redo that post and fix the Qd problem.

Wes (aka the legend)
Posts: 279
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2018 3:03 pm

Post by Wes (aka the legend) » Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:46 pm

Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
I just played this hand and it reflected this post:
Seat 1 Round 2 Score 1-4 Ave & Equal players
(Card_Q-C) Down
(Card_10-D) (Card_9-C) (Card_10-C) (Card_Q-S) (Card_K-S)
I called Next (Spades). I had no choice, in my mind, and according to this post.
I lead one of my trump, which went against Wes' current favorite lead.
The result:
(Card_Q-S) (Card_A-S) (Card_10-S) (Card_J-S)
S4, Dealer won the trick & lead:
(Card_A-D) (Card_10-D) (Card_9-D) (Card_J-D)
S4, Dealer won the trick & lead:
(Card_K-C) (Card_9-C) (Card_K-D) (Card_A-C)
S3, Partner won the trick & lead:
(Card_Q-D) (Card_10-H) (Card_K-S) (Card_A-H)
S1, Me, I won the trick and lead:
(Card_10-C) (Card_9-S) (Card_Q-D) (Card_J-H)
My questions:
1. Does anything jump out at you about how this plan played out?
I'll assume the second Qd is actually the Qh and move forward.

What jumps out for me is the dealer made a curious pass in the first round. He passed with Left + 2 and an off ace. There is a time to consider passing such a strong holding. That is when you have a euchre hand, everything blocked with 2 tricks in every suit. The dealer in your example had approx two tricks in Next and 2 tricks in hearts, but he only had 1 trick in diamonds. So strictly speaking he only had a stopper hand not a euchre hand. This makes his pass a little bit more dicey. I wouldn't do it. I would order in the first round, but his pass is by no means terrible. Having all suits blocked and approx 2 tricks in Next ain't a bad spot to be in.
Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
2. Would this hand have played out better if I had lead (Card_10-D) ?
No, this hand is doomed no matter how you play it as far as I can tell. Those are the breaks, but that's the kind've defensive call you gotta make when you block nothing. And never feel bad about this type of euchre. It's a good euchre.

RedDuke
Posts: 268
Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2018 2:22 am

Post by RedDuke » Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:49 pm

Wes (aka the legend) wrote:
Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:31 pm
Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
1. Does anything jump out at you about how this plan played out?
Yes, you guys guys are playing with a 25 card deck given that your partner has two (Card_Q-D)

:)
Wish I was playing with a 25 card deck! I'd love to have

(Card_J-D) (Card_J-H) (Card_A-D) (Card_J-D) (Card_A-S)

and name diamonds trump. ;)

Richardb02
Posts: 173
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2018 8:57 pm

Post by Richardb02 » Fri Sep 27, 2019 6:34 am

Wes (aka the legend) wrote:
Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:31 pm
Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
1. Does anything jump out at you about how this plan played out?
Yes, you guys guys are playing with a 25 card deck given that your partner has two (Card_Q-D)

:)
Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
2. Would this hand have played out better if I had lead (Card_10-D) ?
Not sure yet. You'll have to redo that post and fix the Qd problem.
I changed the post to (Card_Q-H) from (Card_Q-D)
Sorry, my notes said diamond toss
Last edited by Richardb02 on Sat Sep 28, 2019 12:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Wes (aka the legend)
Posts: 279
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2018 3:03 pm

Post by Wes (aka the legend) » Fri Sep 27, 2019 4:57 pm

Richardb02 wrote:
Fri Sep 27, 2019 6:34 am
I changed the post to (Card_K-D) from (Card_Q-D)
Sorry, my notes said diamond toss
Now there's two KDs :-)

Richardb02
Posts: 173
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2018 8:57 pm

Post by Richardb02 » Sat Sep 28, 2019 12:46 pm

Wes (aka the legend) wrote:
Fri Sep 27, 2019 4:57 pm
Richardb02 wrote:
Fri Sep 27, 2019 6:34 am
I changed the post to (Card_K-D) from (Card_Q-D)
Sorry, my notes said diamond toss
Now there's two KDs :-)
LMAO! How did I know that if I changed my post in a hurry, I would screw it up. I switched to Wes' assumption of a (Card_Q-H).

Richardb02
Posts: 173
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2018 8:57 pm

Post by Richardb02 » Sat Sep 28, 2019 7:25 pm

Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
I just played this hand and it reflected this post:
Seat 1 Round 2 Score 1-4 Ave & Equal players
(Card_Q-C) Down
(Card_10-D) (Card_9-C) (Card_10-C) (Card_Q-S) (Card_K-S)
I called Next (Spades). I had no choice, in my mind, and according to this post.
I lead one of my trump, which went against Wes' current favorite lead.
The result:
(Card_Q-S) (Card_A-S) (Card_10-S) (Card_J-S)
S4, Dealer won the trick & lead:
(Card_A-D) (Card_10-D) (Card_9-D) (Card_J-D)
S4, Dealer won the trick & lead:
(Card_K-C) (Card_9-C) (Card_K-D) (Card_A-C)
S3, Partner won the trick & lead:
(Card_Q-D) (Card_10-H) (Card_K-S) (Card_A-H)
S1, Me, I won the trick and lead:
(Card_10-C) (Card_9-S) (Card_Q-H) (Card_J-H)
My questions:
1. Does anything jump out at you about how this plan played out?
Wes' reply:
Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
I'll assume the second Qd is actually the Qh and move forward.

What jumps out for me is the dealer made a curious pass in the first round. He passed with Left + 2 and an off ace. There is a time to consider passing such a strong holding. That is when you have a euchre hand, everything blocked with 2 tricks in every suit. The dealer in your example had approx two tricks in Next and 2 tricks in hearts, but he only had 1 trick in diamonds. So strictly speaking he only had a stopper hand not a euchre hand. This makes his pass a little bit more dicey. I wouldn't do it. I would order in the first round, but his pass is by no means terrible. Having all suits blocked and approx 2 tricks in Next ain't a bad spot to be in.
As usual I had to work hard to unpack Wes' wisdom.
Dealer held:
(Card_J-S) (Card_A-D) (Card_K-C) (Card_10-H) (Card_J-H)
The up cad was: (Card_Q-C)
Dealer passed, despite having a very strong order.
Wes said the pass was, "by no means terrible."
It wasn't a perfect Euchre hand, but like Loners, you do not need a perfect hand.
Dealer has (Card_J-S) (Card_A-D) for 2 tricks in Next

Dealer has (Card_J-H) (Card_A-D) for 2 tricks in Hearts
Dealer has (Card_J-H) (Card_A-D) for not quite 2 tricks in Diamonds
That's 5 out of the 6 tricks needed for an euchre hand, 83%, and the opportunity to earn 2 points.

So my first take-away is that was not sandbagged. I got euchred by an astute pass.

My 2nd takeaway, is really a question! Wes, and others, where would you draw the line on an Euchre hand? I actually like the Dealer passing on this hand with 5 of the 6 tricks needed! Would you pass?

And 2A, would you pass with a very strong order but only 4 of the 6 tricks needed for an euchre hand?
I can't make an example hand using the 3 cards in the kitty(is that the correct term)?

RedDuke
Posts: 268
Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2018 2:22 am

Post by RedDuke » Sun Sep 29, 2019 3:59 am

Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 28, 2019 7:25 pm
Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
I just played this hand and it reflected this post:
Seat 1 Round 2 Score 1-4 Ave & Equal players
(Card_Q-C) Down
(Card_10-D) (Card_9-C) (Card_10-C) (Card_Q-S) (Card_K-S)
I called Next (Spades). I had no choice, in my mind, and according to this post.
I lead one of my trump, which went against Wes' current favorite lead.
The result:
(Card_Q-S) (Card_A-S) (Card_10-S) (Card_J-S)
S4, Dealer won the trick & lead:
(Card_A-D) (Card_10-D) (Card_9-D) (Card_J-D)
S4, Dealer won the trick & lead:
(Card_K-C) (Card_9-C) (Card_K-D) (Card_A-C)
S3, Partner won the trick & lead:
(Card_Q-D) (Card_10-H) (Card_K-S) (Card_A-H)
S1, Me, I won the trick and lead:
(Card_10-C) (Card_9-S) (Card_Q-H) (Card_J-H)
My questions:
1. Does anything jump out at you about how this plan played out?
Wes' reply:
Richardb02 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:27 pm
I'll assume the second Qd is actually the Qh and move forward.

What jumps out for me is the dealer made a curious pass in the first round. He passed with Left + 2 and an off ace. There is a time to consider passing such a strong holding. That is when you have a euchre hand, everything blocked with 2 tricks in every suit. The dealer in your example had approx two tricks in Next and 2 tricks in hearts, but he only had 1 trick in diamonds. So strictly speaking he only had a stopper hand not a euchre hand. This makes his pass a little bit more dicey. I wouldn't do it. I would order in the first round, but his pass is by no means terrible. Having all suits blocked and approx 2 tricks in Next ain't a bad spot to be in.
As usual I had to work hard to unpack Wes' wisdom.
Dealer held:
(Card_J-S) (Card_A-D) (Card_K-C) (Card_10-H) (Card_J-H)
The up cad was: (Card_Q-C)
Dealer passed, despite having a very strong order.
Wes said the pass was, "by no means terrible."
It wasn't a perfect Euchre hand, but like Loners, you do not need a perfect hand.
Dealer has (Card_J-S) (Card_A-D) for 2 tricks in Next

Dealer has (Card_J-H) (Card_A-D) for 2 tricks in Hearts
Dealer has (Card_J-H) (Card_A-D) for not quite 2 tricks in Diamonds
That's 5 out of the 6 tricks needed for an euchre hand, 83%, and the opportunity to earn 2 points.

So my first take-away is that was not sandbagged. I got euchred by an astute pass.

My 2nd takeaway, is really a question! Wes, and others, where would you draw the line on an Euchre hand? I actually like the Dealer passing on this hand with 5 of the 6 tricks needed! Would you pass?

And 2A, would you pass with a very strong order but only 4 of the 6 tricks needed for an euchre hand?
I can't make an example hand using the 3 cards in the kitty(is that the correct term)?
I hate the term sandbagging. It implies a certain degree of deception and underhandedness. While you certainly can be deceptive, it's also very good strategy to pass with a euchre hand and most experienced players know this.

To my mind, a euchre hand is one that is almost certainly likely to take two tricks regardless of what gets called as trump. At the same time, it is not strong enough to take all five tricks in most cases. The classic example is this:

(Card_J-C) (Card_J-D) (Card_J-S) (Card_J-H) (Card_A-S) .

No matter what trump is, this hand will take at least two tricks since it contains both bowers of any trump suit. That ace also has a good chance of taking a trick no matter what trump is. This hand probably won't be able to take five tricks though since the two reverse next jacks are most likely losers.

The hand that you show is also a decent euchre hand, albeit a weaker one. Actually, the one you show might actually be one of the weaker ones that I can think of. That's because of the weakness in diamonds. Left+Ace is not good for two tricks. If first seat names diamonds and leads with the right, that'll eat one of your two diamond trumps. Actually, in my experience, a left+ace will only take one trick more than 50% (maybe even 75%) of the time.

The dealer has an advantage when it comes to euchre hands. This is due to the fact that he doesn't have to have all four jacks to have a very good one. A hand like this:

(Card_J-C) (Card_J-D) (Card_J-H) (Card_A-S) (Card_9-D)

is actually a pretty strong euchre hand for the dealer if the upcard is a spade. Even if it's something like the nine. This is because if the dealer passes then he's got a pretty high likelihood of getting two tricks no matter what the opponents do. If first seat orders up the spade, he's also got a pretty good shot at euchring him considering that he's got last play. This same hand is not a euchre hand though from any other position.

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