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Turning 'Trash' Into Treasure - Part 1

An abundance of point-cycle craps numbers (2, 3, 11, and 12) pose an interesting predicament for the skilled shooter.

~Do we ignore the 'trash' and continue shooting for the box-numbers that we already have active bets on?

~Do we interrupt our rhythm and order up some high-vig prop-bets in hopes of capturing lightning in a bottle?

~Do we formulate a betting-plan that recognizes those craps-numbers in the same advantage-play light as we would with any other validated opportunity?

It really depends on two things:


Quality and Quantity
Whether or not an abundance of point-cycle craps numbers pose a bona-fide and legitimate advantage-play situation depends on the quality and the quantity of the trash numbers that you routinely throw.

In this case as always, your mileage will vary depending on your own validated long-term results.

Ergo, one shooter’s trash can be another shooter’s treasure.

Determining whether your point-cycle craps outcomes are trash or treasure comes down to being honest with yourself.

~If you merely think you have an edge and you won’t go to the trouble of actually quantifying it; then chances are you are still a gambler who likes to think of himself as an advantage-player in order to ease the guilt of losing.

~If your unverified perceived edge is really nothing more than wishful thinking in order to justify and rationalize more negative-expectation ‘gambling’; then don’t kid yourself…you should fully expect to lose and you probably will.

On the other hand…

~A combination of good quality and ample quantity of mid-hand trash numbers make everything near-perfect in terms of taking advantage of it.

Let’s look at how much quantity you actually need and how good the quality of that trash has to be before you start chasing after the junk-wagon with your money.

By the Numbers

~The Horn-bet is composed of the 2, 3, 11, and 12.

~There is one way each to roll a 2 or a 12.

~There is two ways each to roll a 3 or 11.

~The Horn-numbers combine to represent 6-out-of-36 possible dice-outcomes on randomly thrown dice.

~That represents 16.67% of all expected random outcomes.

~The Horn-bet itself pays carries a house-edge of 12.5%.

~A Horn-high 2 or 12 has a house-edge of 12.78%, while a Horn-high 3 or 11 has a house-edge of 12.22%.

~A straight-up bet on the 2 or 12 pays 30-to-1 and carries a house-edge of 13.89%

~A straight-up bet on the 3 or 11 pays 15-to-1 and carries a house-edge of 11.11%

~The Any Craps (2, 3, and 12) pays 7-to-1 and carries a house-edge of 11.11%

~The World-bet (whirl) covers the 2, 3, 11, 12, and 7, and carries a house-edge of 13.33%

When you look at those house-edge figures, you quickly realize that your shooting has to overcome a very tall hurdle in order to overcome the vig. That explains why most astute dice-influencers with modest skill stay away from those center-of-the-table props.


Quantity is One Thing…Quality is Something Completely Different
When we talk about “quality”, we’re really talking about which one of the craps numbers you generally throw the most of. For example, if you throw a preponderance of 3’s, but not 2’s, 11’s, or 12’s; then it doesn’t make any sense to bet the Horn.

Even if you throw what seems like an inordinate number of point-cycle 3’s; you still have to determine whether you throw enough of them to make it economically feasible. It’s also important that you determine how often you are able to throw closely-grouped clusters of those numbers, since the closer they are grouped together; the more exploitable they are.


Quantify Your Edge

The first thing a dice-influencers should to do with any bet or set of bets they are contemplating; is to find out how much of an edge they can normally expect to have over it.

If you are making wagers over which you have no edge; then you do not have an advantage…so it’s not an advantage-play opportunity.

Now let me say something that should go without saying:

~With enough practice, most players can develop a validated advantage over the low-vig bets like the PL w/Odds, and some Place-bets; but when it comes to being able to constantly overcome the vig of an 11 or 13% house-edge bet…then most dice-influencers are sadly mistaken.

~If you can overcome such a high-vig bet with your dice-influencing; then you can make much more money by focusing that same talent on lower-vig wagers where you’ll have an even bigger advantage over the house and where your money is subject to way less volatility.

The rest of this article (and especially Part Two) is focused on those players who CAN steadily beat the house-edge on those high-vig prop bets and who want to make point-cycle prop-bets part of their A-P regimen.


Is There Room in the A-P World for “See a Horn…Bet a Horn”?
~Eight or ten years ago if you asked me that question I would have said, “Uh, that's not for me.”.

~Five years ago if you asked me that question I would have said, “No”.

~Three years ago if you asked me that same question, I would have said, “Hell NO!”

~Today, I say, “Sometimes yes, but most times no”.

Why the change of heart?

Well, a few years back, Irishsetter proposed assembling a team of skilled shooters to run a progression on the Horn-bet whereby multiple dice-influencers in a row would shoot for Horn-wins.

The idea was to hit a winner before running out of skilled shooters, but in the event that that happened; then they would wait until the first dice-influencer on the team got the dice back into his or her hands before restarting the Horn-bet progression where it left off.

I was encouraged by the success that he reported, and it emboldened me to try the same thing, albeit, strictly on my own shooting and without a team.

To do this on a solo basis, it’s best if you are the lone player at a table. However if there are other random-rollers and you haven’t hit the Horn-progression on your own shooting; then you simply wait for the dice to cycle back around to you before you recommence betting on the Horn.

Though the Horn-Progression isn't strictly based on Heavy's see-a-Horn-number-outcome-and-then-bet-on-the-Horn concept; it's inspiration was clearly sourced back to that original idea.

I played the Horn-Progression for literally hundreds of sessions, but I stopped doing so after several months. Frankly it was starting to attract a little too much attention, even in casinos that have a high loss-tolerance and a laissez-faire attitude. Admittedly I was using some fairly high-dollar wagers to start the Horn-progression with, and on occasion I had to progress my bets to a point where the eventual payoff was very near the table limit.

The thing that it proved to me in the process however, is that even a high-vig gaming lore concept like H’s “See a Horn…Bet a Horn” method, can be a legitimate weapon in your A-P arsenal…as long as you accurately quantify your edge…and as long as that profit-making edge is equal to or greater than the advantage you have on other, lower-vig opportunities.

Coming up…

Part Two of Turning 'Trash' Into Treasure

Until then,

Good Luck and Good Skill at the Tables…and in Life.

The Mad Professor
Copyright © 2007-2008

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on August 11, 2008 1:07 PM.

The previous post in this blog was A Compelling Reason to Use Put-bets in Casinos that Allow Them.

The next post in this blog is Turning Trash Into Treasure - Part 2.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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