Weekly games 12/28 Donate or not?

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Dlan
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Weekly games 12/28 Donate or not?

Unread post by Dlan » Wed Dec 30, 2020 10:36 am

Here is an interesting hand.
You're sitting in first, now if dealer (south) turns-down the jack, you most likely have a much-needed point in diamonds. Yet, if the dealer has a lone, the game is over.

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Richardb02
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Unread post by Richardb02 » Thu Dec 31, 2020 4:20 pm

No, Donating in this situation is not reasonable at all.

You have merely substituted the nearly impossible task of winning being down 1-8 with the unlikely possibility that your team can take a point. Passing has the better EV.

The likely situation from passing is being down 1-7. Without hitting the textbooks, I calculate an 8% probability of winning being down 1-7 vs. a 4.5% probability of winning down 1-8. (Using a geometric progression).

I also consider the emotional side of Euchre. You can always play another game. Who wants to use their emotional energy when down 1-6. Give your opponents an opportunity to take 4 and put you out of your misery! Then beat the crap out of them the next game!!

I chalk this Donation up to auto-pilot, bravado, frustration or just a mistake. (BTW, I am good with all those motivations, LOL)!

It is reasonable to Donate when you can afford the cost. If you are up by 3 or more, Donating absolutely makes sense. You can afford the 2 points (unless opponents are at 8 or 9 of course). If the score is low the threshold can be lower. I have no problem being down 0-3 or 0-4, during the course of a game. Why should it concern me if I’m down 0-2 and a Donation situation occurs. Donate, it makes sense.

Do you want to fully understand how important Donating is to winning Euchre? Join os Monday nights, 850 PM ET at worldofcardgames.com

Wes (aka the legend)
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Unread post by Wes (aka the legend) » Thu Dec 31, 2020 5:52 pm

Meh 8-)

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Dlan
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Unread post by Dlan » Thu Dec 31, 2020 10:23 pm

In the end, blocking kept the w/e team in the game. After seeing how the hand played out, it hard to argue with the result.

There are times when a player will 'just have a gut feeling' about a hand. Was it the correct call, probably not? Was it the right call, yes.

Richardb02
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Unread post by Richardb02 » Fri Jan 01, 2021 11:46 am

I’ll agree that it was an appropriate play, in the right situation!

Using a sports metaphor, if it was the deciding game, yes, it is appropriate. If it was game 6, or earlier of a 7 game series, no. However, Monday nights is playoff caliber practice. There is no reason not to test the theory or gut instinct, on Monday night. I enjoyed the hand, the game and the discourse!

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LeftyK
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Unread post by LeftyK » Fri Jan 01, 2021 1:08 pm

"I also consider the emotional side of Euchre. You can always play another game. Who wants to use their emotional energy when down 1-6. Give your opponents an opportunity to take 4 and put you out of your misery! Then beat the crap out of them the next game!!"

- I can go another sports metaphor. In tennis when down triple break, it's best just to let your opponent win that set and save your energy for the next set. === also I did not enjoy that hand because my walkoff loner was taken away :) we went onto win that game big anyways.

Wes (aka the legend)
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Unread post by Wes (aka the legend) » Sat Jan 02, 2021 3:34 pm

Richardb02 wrote:
Thu Dec 31, 2020 4:20 pm
No, Donating in this situation is not reasonable at all.

You have merely substituted the nearly impossible task of winning being down 1-8 with the unlikely possibility that your team can take a point. Passing has the better EV.

The likely situation from passing is being down 1-7. Without hitting the textbooks, I calculate an 8% probability of winning being down 1-7 vs. a 4.5% probability of winning down 1-8. (Using a geometric progression).
It think we should just go with that probability chart. It's not perfect but it's the best we got: https://members.tripod.com/borf_books/euchprob.htm

Down 7-1 with the deal our team would have approx 11% equity. Down 8-1 with our deal we would have approx 6% equity. So when I donate down 6-1 my implied claim is I believe my team has 6% or less equity* based on the upcard + the cards I can see in my hand.
*: If somehow I knew my team had exactly 6% equity based on the upcard + my seen cards this would create an apparent point of indifference between donating and passing but donating doesn't always lead to a euchre plus even if it was a tie we'd still wanna donate to smooth out the variance. Not all ties are equal! Give me the 6% that doesn't involve my opponents winning the game on a loner up 6-1 vs the other 6%.
Richardb02 wrote:
Thu Dec 31, 2020 4:20 pm
I also consider the emotional side of Euchre. You can always play another game. Who wants to use their emotional energy when down 1-6. Give your opponents an opportunity to take 4 and put you out of your misery! Then beat the crap out of them the next game!!

I chalk this Donation up to auto-pilot, bravado, frustration or just a mistake. (BTW, I am good with all those motivations, LOL)!
There is no emotion involved. Everything I do is cold and calculated. But that doesn't make it correct! There is room for debate on many of the moves I make. That's the way it's gonna always be until we get those simulations. And I can tell you right now, my overall donation strategy has not won many friends. I've mentioned this before but when the opposing dealer has a Jack upcard I subscribe to the Irishwolf school of thought: the score doesn't really matter. Specifically, my working hypothesis is vs a jack upcard I am always donating no matter what the score (obv not at 8-9) IF I have the following hand configurations:

1) No trump, no aces
2) No trump, 1 ace
3) 1 trump, no aces

One exception: if the opposing team has 7 pts I only donate on 1) and maybe 3) if my 1 trump is not the Left.

BTW in theory it would be easy to prove my donate strategy is right or wrong. All you'd have to do is take 4 bots of equal strength, but tweak one team to follow my donate prescription vs the Jack upcard. Run a million games and see who wins the most (and hope it's statistically significant).
Richardb02 wrote:
Thu Dec 31, 2020 4:20 pm
It is reasonable to Donate when you can afford the cost. If you are up by 3 or more, Donating absolutely makes sense. You can afford the 2 points (unless opponents are at 8 or 9 of course). If the score is low the threshold can be lower. I have no problem being down 0-3 or 0-4, during the course of a game. Why should it concern me if I’m down 0-2 and a Donation situation occurs. Donate, it makes sense.
I think the Jack upcard is a special situation vs all other donate situations. And if we have one of those 3 hand configurations above it's a very dangerous situation. So much so that what the score is and what kind of hand we have in the 2nd rd, is virtually irrelevant. Again tho, that's just a working hypothesis. You're free to disagree.
Last edited by Wes (aka the legend) on Sat Jan 02, 2021 7:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Wes (aka the legend)
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Unread post by Wes (aka the legend) » Sat Jan 02, 2021 5:43 pm

Since we're on the subject of donating, I'll post 3 additional hands where I think egregious non-donating mistakes were made. Me and Edward are currently playing in a big money cash game* in the after hours of our tournament every Thursday night. It's probably the toughest euchre game in the world as it's Me and Edward squaring off against two euchre veterans who have won the Las Vegas euchre championship multiple times. Everyone in this game is donating in the spots below.
*: by big money I mean $5 per game.


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Up 8-1 with no trump and only 1 off ace it is imperative for East to donate. Always protect big leads. With 2 off aces I would not donate. If I had 2 low trump and an off ace I wouldn't donate either. If I had one trump + an off ace and a 2nd rd hand I wouldn't donate vs a Queen (but maybe I should), but I would if I had no where to go or didn't have good defense in the 2nd rd.

Image

https://worldofcardgames.com/#!replayer ... %3A1%7D%5D

Up 9-3 with one trump+no aces this is a MUST donate vs all upcards. Versus an Ace upcard it's even riskier to pass. At say 0-0 I'm not sure what to do. You have the Left which does take out some loner combos and you have a decent 2nd round loner. I think passing is fine, probably best, but I'm not sure. At 9-3 tho, protecting that nice lead is paramount. There's nothing to debate at that score.

Image

https://worldofcardgames.com/#!replayer ... %3A1%7D%5D

Up 8-4 with no trump, no aces, this is an absolute must donate vs all upcards. If the enemy gets a 4 pt loner your equity drops to 54%, essentially a coinflip. Up 8-6 with the deal your team's equity is 74%. You need to protect that equity. With no trump, no aces, one should be scared to death to pass in this spot.

Richardb02
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Unread post by Richardb02 » Sat Jan 02, 2021 6:29 pm

Wes, I applaud your methodical and consistent approach to Donating! 8-)

I doubly applaud you agreeing that we can disagree!! 8-) 8-)

You have convinced me to Donate in an additional situation! On Monday nights, I will endeavor to Donate if I am in S1 and you (or Dlan, he was warm to the Donation), are my Partner in S3! If I don’t Donate, you are likely to Donate from S3! You have my permission to remind me, if I fail to deliver.

Tbolt65
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Unread post by Tbolt65 » Sun Jan 03, 2021 2:21 am

I used to be a fan of donating alot. I have with over time adjusted that to be a bit more selective and not leak points away as much. I disagrees with Wes in certain spots as to donate in. In my thinking, the 6 to 1 donates should not be used at all on a must donate with the prerequisites that Wes outlined out. I feel you give up too many 2pts vs the rare 4pts and the game that may happen. Im not totally against donating while being down. Its just at those scores of a great divide like 6 to 1 you constantly put your team at a great disadvantage. Plus when this really hurts is against teams that do not go alone very much. Its a double whammy because your giving free points to a team that only go alone with the most premium of hands.

However euchre you have to sometimes have to play unconventionally at times and if you must. Make sure that you arent just doing it because your hand is total crap. The up card, the opponents and your partner all have to factor in here along with score. You can make educated gueses from time to time in Euchre but do it for the right reasons and not just for sake of. If these plays are default always, you will be giving up too much in the long run.

Wes would like concrete math on this but my observations over the many 10s of thousands of games have shown me vs a wide range of players of when I have done this as a method or rule of thumb. You will be giving up too much from my experience. So thats why I have adjusted my play. Can you have success? Sure. You just have to be a bit more selective.


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Edward

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LeftyK
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Unread post by LeftyK » Sun Jan 03, 2021 4:32 pm

I agree with Edward here and I go by the Natty B donation situations......I just think you guys donate too much on Monday nights :)

RedDuke
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Unread post by RedDuke » Sun Jan 03, 2021 6:37 pm

Earlier today, I basically gave a couple people an important lesson on donating.

Score was 8-6 in their favor. I was dealer holding (Card_J-D) (Card_A-H) (Card_9-C) (Card_A-S) (Card_Q-S)

Upcard was (Card_J-H) .

First seat actually wound up passing with a hand full of black cards. He had no trumps. His partner also passed.

There was no next hand...

If you've got no trump, the opponents have 6 or 7 and you have either 8 or 9, you always want to donate against a jack upcard.

I'd probably donate against just about any other upcard too in that situation unless I've got something that'll stop a lone in that suit.

Tbolt65
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Unread post by Tbolt65 » Sun Jan 03, 2021 8:34 pm

Wes (aka the legend) wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 5:43 pm
Since we're on the subject of donating, I'll post 3 additional hands where I think egregious non-donating mistakes were made. Me and Edward are currently playing in a big money cash game* in the after hours of our tournament every Thursday night. It's probably the toughest euchre game in the world as it's Me and Edward squaring off against two euchre veterans who have won the Las Vegas euchre championship multiple times. Everyone in this game is donating in the spots below.
*: by big money I mean $5 per game.


Image

https://worldofcardgames.com/#!replayer ... %3A1%7D%5D

Up 8-1 with no trump and only 1 off ace it is imperative for East to donate. Always protect big leads. With 2 off aces I would not donate. If I had 2 low trump and an off ace I wouldn't donate either. If I had one trump + an off ace and a 2nd rd hand I wouldn't donate vs a Queen (but maybe I should), but I would if I had no where to go or didn't have good defense in the 2nd rd.

Image

https://worldofcardgames.com/#!replayer ... %3A1%7D%5D

Up 9-3 with one trump+no aces this is a MUST donate vs all upcards. Versus an Ace upcard it's even riskier to pass. At say 0-0 I'm not sure what to do. You have the Left which does take out some loner combos and you have a decent 2nd round loner. I think passing is fine, probably best, but I'm not sure. At 9-3 tho, protecting that nice lead is paramount. There's nothing to debate at that score.

Image

https://worldofcardgames.com/#!replayer ... %3A1%7D%5D

Up 8-4 with no trump, no aces, this is an absolute must donate vs all upcards. If the enemy gets a 4 pt loner your equity drops to 54%, essentially a coinflip. Up 8-6 with the deal your team's equity is 74%. You need to protect that equity. With no trump, no aces, one should be scared to death to pass in this spot.

Theses are easy spots to donate and I am in total agreement here with Wes but, if the opponents are weaker at calling loners then that might be the one spot to pass if you think they will not be going alone.

Tbolt65
Edward

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LeftyK
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Unread post by LeftyK » Tue Jan 05, 2021 5:02 pm

the 2nd one up 9-3 I just don't agree with. It's just not my style. ....and the if I was dealer in the 1st situation down 1-8 yeah I'm going alone with king high two suited. (nothing else to lose at the point almost).

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