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   STICKMAN'S STANCE - MONTHLY ARTICLES BY STICKMAN
Craps Training

Come Bet Ramblings - Part 2

Last month I gave some background about myself and talked about the 5-Count. The math of the game states that using Pass and Come bets with odds is the best bet on the table. After all, you have an 8-to-4 (or 2-to-1) edge over the house on a come-out roll decision. It seemed to me, however, that I was experiencing nowhere near the 2 to 1 edge the math dictated.

Research was in order and research was done. Every Pass Line or Come bet decision that affected my bankroll was recorded. In fact, every Pass Line or Come bet decision that affected any of the GTC instructors that played at a table with me was recorded. Most of the decisions were the same, but not always. When betting on random throwers, less is more. The less money you bet, the more you save. Some GTC folks wait longer than the 3-count to place their first Come bet maybe the 4-count, the 5-count or even more. This changes the timing of the decisions and actually added additional data to my research base without adding more playing time.

I could have just plopped a notebook on the rail and wrote down each decision as it occurred. Doing this, however, would draw unwanted attention. When playing the game of Craps as an advantage player, one gets enough attention. I like to do everything possible to eliminate additional attention-grabbers and try to appear as much like a degenerate gambler as possible. I chose to use chips to track each Come-Out win or loss. A red chip was used for a win and a white chip for a loss. Transferring this information to paper was done at the end of the session or when there was a break in the action, such as several people buying-in.

Alas, even this method brought attention. During the second session, a dealer saw the growing barber pole of chips and commented, "I see we have a roll-counter." I made some comment about trying to decide the best time to place a bet by determining when a winner is "due," which seemed to satisfy him.

After two sessions, the count of wins to losses was 21 to 16 - not exactly 2 to 1, but better than it seemed while playing at the table. I realized at this point that there was one important statistic that was not being captured winning the Pass Line or Come bet, but losing money on currently established Pass Line or Come bets. This situation occurs when a Come-Out 7 is rolled with Come bets established, or on a 7-out with a bet in the Come area. You win a one-unit bet, and lose one or more Pass Line or Come bets sometimes with odds. Another color was added to the tracking scheme green for a losing win.

Tracking continued for over twenty sessions. There were streaks of wins (12 being the longest) and streaks of losses (6 was the longest). Although there may not be much significance to the streak lengths, it is interesting to note that the win streak is twice the loss streak maybe there is something to the 2-to-1 advantage.

The final tally is as follows:

Total Wins: 273

Losing Wins: 46

Losses: 154

Taking the total wins, which includes the losing wins, and dividing by the losses we get 1.78 to 1. Very close to the 2 to 1 number for this small a sample. But why does it seem like I am not winning at this rate. If we subtract the losing wins from the total wins (273-46 = 227) and divide that number by the losses we get 1.47 to 1. Still not bad. Heck even if we count the losing wins as losses and divide 227 by 210 we still get 1.08 to 1 still a winning percentage. Also keep in mind that these numbers do not count any of the Pass Line and Come bet wins that occurred after the Come-Out.

I have the bankroll to support three Come bets with odds and these results convinced me that Come betting is the way to go with random shooters. You just have to learn to take the "losing winners" in stride. When that Come-Out 7 knocks down your two Come bets, it is all part of the total game. You still have the lowest house edge on these bets.

In the long run, however, you will lose on random rollers. That is in the math, too.

And remember; keep your words soft and sweet in case you have to eat them.

Stickman

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