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Table Games Hitting 16 against a 7 in DD Blackjack

Discussion in 'Table Games' started by NickPapageorgio, Nov 23, 2014.

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  1. NickPapageorgio

    NickPapageorgio OG of the Sal Sagev Hotel

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    I play mostly double deck downtown..... I'm having a harder and harder time justifying hitting 16 versus a dealer 7 (especially after watching 3 undercards being drawn prior to my position)..... It's a no-brainer versus an 8,9,face or ace, but it's a close call versus the 7.

    I understand that the math supports hitting, however....

    How close mathematically is it to 50/50 in double deck?

    Thanks, Nick:beer:
     
  2. hillwood24

    hillwood24 High-Roller

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    I have a friend that won't hit 16 vs 7 for the same reason you mentioned. However, the best article I've read on this play is Fred Renzey's article where he breaks down the math. I'll copy and paste below.



    "You see it so much at the blackjack tables. The dealer has a 7 showing, and the player steps out of line and makes a bad play. Why? It's because most players don't respect or fear a dealer's 7 up.

    A fellow player just the other night stood with 7/5/2/2 against a 7 saying, "If she doesn't have a 10 or an Ace in the hole, she's gotta' draw." He said that as if drawing means she's going to bust.

    Well, do you know how often the dealer busts when she has a 7-up? The answer is 26% of the time. The rest of the time, you better have a made hand – or you lose.

    Following is a list of other scattered mistakes I see made against a dealer's 7 up. Have you made any of these?

    Splitting two 6s
    Standing on Ace/6
    Doubling with Ace/6
    Doubling down with 9

    All of these plays hurt you in a shoe game. The most common mistake by far, though, is:

    Not Hitting 16: I'm sure the average player doesn't realize that the dealer will make a completed hand with a 7-up nearly as often as with a 10-up (26% vs. 23%). Yet, a 7-up is so much easier to beat than a 10-up the times you hit and don't bust. To show you what I mean, here are some stats.

    Whether you're hitting your 16 against a dealer's 7 or against a 10, you've got exactly the same chance to bust, 62%. The other 38 times when you catch an Ace, 2, 3, 4 or 5, you'll end up beating a dealer's 10-up 23 times (counting pushes as a half win and half loss). That's a 23-15 record for all the times you hit and don't bust.

    But if you're against a dealer's 7 when you catch that little card, you'll beat her 29 times, to go 29-9 (adjusting in the same way). Taking the gamble and hitting your 16 is much more likely to pay off against a 7 than against a 10. There are many times when you actually should stand with 16 against a 10 (as discussed in other columns). But against a 7, you've got to hit it every time, even if it's a 4/4/4/4.

    Splitting two 6s: This is actually a fairly small mistake against a dealer's 7, but a mistake nonetheless (unless you're playing single or double-deck with loose rules). In any shoe game, you'll come out of the hand cheaper off if you just hit your 12 and be done with it. Playing the 12 once is less costly than playing 6 twice.

    Standing on Ace/6: Playing for a tie here is far too conservative, especially since your 17 against a dealer's 7 actually loses more often than it wins. Hit it like a man and if you make a "stiff", hit it again. That strategy will convert you from an underdog to a favorite on the hand, overall.

    Doubling with Ace/6: Now that would be going too far. You may need a second, or even a third hit with this hand. While just hitting will make you an overall favorite against a 7, limiting yourself to one card by doubling down will leave you as an underdog – and for twice the money.

    Doubling Down with 9: It's easy to see how this might look like a sensible play. In fact, for every time you do double down here, you'll actually win the hand 53% of the time and make some net profit. Only problem is, had you just hit it, you'd have won it 59% of the time – and made more profit. Hit the hand."
     
  3. Turtleman

    Turtleman VIP Whale

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    Without going into the long story, I spent a very, very, very long time writing my own blackjack simulation software to test this very thing, as well as all of the basic strategy and various betting schemes. I had hoped to uncover a "flaw" or two; but after "reinventing the wheel" found that the good ol' bs, as we've come to know and love it, is completely accurate! While some of the decisions are nearly "too close to call" over the short term, they are the correct decisions. I'll add that how you play borderline hands is almost irrelevant compared to your overall betting strategy!
     
  4. klawrey

    klawrey High-Roller

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    I will add much of the same that the previous posters have stated the statistically right play is to hit and it's based in mathematics.

    As for preference and table "vibes" and "camaraderie," I prefer to be at a table with players playing by the book even though their decision don't theoretically have an effect on my winning or losing, it's more of a karma type thing. With that said, most of all I prefer consistency at the table. So if you are going to hit 16 vs 7, please hit 16 vs 7... EVERY TIME. Same goes with players that struggle with 12 vs 2, don't hit one time and stay the next. BE CONSISTENT and most players can live happily with your decisions. The only time I've had a semi-meltdown at a table and said something to another player was to a player that would hit 12 vs 2 then stay the next time then stay on 16 vs 9 then hit it later on. It just created a bad vibe at the table and I was not the only one to voice my displeasure.
     
  5. flysrb

    flysrb Hey Now!

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    Hey Now!
    I always play 3rd base, and always play BS. Funny how much grief I get when I hit a 16 vs 7. "You took the dealers bust card!!!"
    I just grin and say "Hey Now!"
     
    HEY NOW! NYE in AC!!!!!!!
  6. flysrb

    flysrb Hey Now!

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    double post-sorry!
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2014
    HEY NOW! NYE in AC!!!!!!!
  7. Turtleman

    Turtleman VIP Whale

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    Of course, if someone is more on the swift side rather than just plain stupid, hitting or standing on these marginal hands may best be decided by observing the distribution of high or low cards. Aside from counting, if there hasn't been a single 10 dealt to a full table, it might be wise to stand on that16.

    While I often hear that you need to be consistent, I've never understood the reasons. Personally, I couldn't care less if someone is consistent or not or how they play their hands. In the nearly 30 years I've been playing BJ, I don't think I've ever seen anyone get upset when a player isn't consistent on those iffy hands. However, they can sure ruffle some feathers with the bigger blunders like splitting 10's, hitting their 16 against the dealer's 6, and so on. "Vibes and comradery?" ... Oh, never mind! :goofy:
     
  8. Tree DA

    Tree DA High-Roller

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    I agree.I don't really care if another player is consistent; I would just think that for their own peace of mind it's better otherwise they'll be laboring over decisions that should literally be no brainers.

    Keep in mind too that these 'inconsistencies' may be the work of an advantage player who knows exactly what he's doing and has very good reasons for it.
     
  9. mescalita

    mescalita Low-Roller

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    Good advice from hillwood 24. 16 vs dealer 7 is nowhere near a borderline play. Hitting in this situation is one of the most "basic" basic strategy plays.
    One small tidbit about downtown double deck games - El Cortez and Downtown Grand both allow DAS, which makes splitting 6's against a dealer 7 the proper play. I love the incredulous looks I get when following basic strategy on this one.... :)
     
  10. jimbondo

    jimbondo Tourist

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    go with one or the other and always stick to it...
     
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