September 28, 2022

*** This hand was suggested by HaydenSr
55*-55  ?
Total votes: 244
HaydenSr7 was cut.
2500 votes

Joined: March 2017

Wednesday 3:03 AM
Sometimes y’all just keep what ya can and toss what’s left…this is that kind of hand.
Congratulations Rob winning the TOC. Was nice to finally meet you.
Ras2829 says: Hi Goatman: Heard through the grapevine that you had made the playoffs in the Omaha Grand National. How did that go? Am curious as need a loan! No kidding?
Goatman says: Hi Ras. I qualified in the Cornhusker Classic but nothing in the GR. I got knocked in the third round…took it to five games.
3720 votes

Joined: June 2013

Wednesday 3:21 AM
Not many cards will increase the value of this hand, and Pone probably won't give me a 5 card to go with the 9A. That said, eight points is eight points.
As John pointed out the other day, two thirds of the deck are not X cards, so chances are you'll be disappointed if you choose to keep A44 together hoping for one.
7c reply to an X lead might bring 31/8 if paired, or 31/2 if another X is played. Regardless of that, my second card will either be another 7 or another club suit.
3502 votes

Joined: February 2011

Wednesday 3:31 AM
Definitely not overthinking this one.
3959 votes

Joined: October 2008

Wednesday 3:50 AM
We are nearly half way through this game, and the score is TIED at Hole 55, as both players are jockeying in an attempt to become the first player to deal from 'at or beyond' the Third Street Par Hole 70, which is Fifteen Holes 'yonder' ... in the distance.

While we are virtually certain in two deals hence to become the Dealer at or beyond this pivotal target, what's not yet clear is whether our Opponent will get there by completion of THIS deal or not, and Pone's primary objective is therefore to try to wrest the Positional Advantage away from us.

But doing so will require our Opponent to navigate Fifteen Holes by completion of this deal, which is Five Points or 50% above average! I think that this probably translates into our need to adopt a somewhat Defensive Posture, even though we are the Current Dealer.

The options we have look very straightforward, because there is only one way to 'split' these six cards and retain Eight Points in our Hand, and that is after we Keep (4 4 7 7) and Toss (A 9).

If we were desperate to try to 'squeeze' more combined points from this arrangement, we might seek to retain either the A-4-4 or the 7-7-9 clusters, but our position in no way demands or even hints at a need to obtain a Dozen Points, especially not at the risk of actually ending up with less than the sure Eight Points we are promised after Toss (A 9)!

If we did, for example, Keep (A 7 7 9) and Toss (4 4), even after the nearly 9% chance of an 8 Card Cut, we would only have Fourteen Points in our Hand, and Keep (A 4 4 9) and Toss (7 7) fares much worse, unless we strike 'pay dirt' in our Crib, and as such, that is thus more of a hope and a prayer and a promise than it is a good discard!

And, with Keep (4 4 7 7) and Toss (A 9), we also have Four Cuts (44, 77) that can deliver us Fourteen Points or more, and in fact HALF of them will produce Twenty Points! Meanwhile, if that same 8 Card Cut appears, it 'reels in' a Dozen Points ANYWAY, even if we Toss (A 9).

Furthermore, I see no real differences in our need to peg defensively with almost any conceivable way we might divide up these cards. Retaining those Two PAIRS might in fact be our best Defensive Pegging Hand, ANYWAY!

We shall therefore assign Keep (A 7 7 9) and Toss (4 4) into a distant Second Place; and, while it also still shows up 'on the podium' today, Keep (A 4 4 9) and Toss (7 7) commands an even-more-distant Third Place.

Let's Keep (4 4 7 7) and Toss (A 9) today, and do so with confidence.

After the Ace Cut, we now have a respectable Ten Points in our Hand, with prospects for a good Crib. It might even be a GREAT Crib, and we just don't know it yet!

The pegging process should be intuitive, since we can safely PAIR any lead, and otherwise we 'duck and dodge' Pone's cards as best we can. Two PAIRS is typically a "safe" Pegging Hand, but the ranking of these cards does involve some inherent dangers.

There is some risk that Pone could "connect" one of our 4 Cards with one of our 7 Cards into a Run-of-Four (or more, nevermore) ... which sounds a bit like a line from Edgar Allan Poe!

Our "worst fear" or danger during the pegging would be if Pone had one or both remaining 4 Card(s), and thus might "trap" our 4 Card(s); in over fifty years of play, this has happened to me only once that I can recall.

It was an "unforced error," since having more than one choice, I mistakenly played a 4 Card, bringing the Count up to Nineteen, and then, after my Opponent PAIRED it, I believe I had no choice but to take PAIRS Royal and bring the Count up to Twenty-Seven; and of course, my Opponent had the 'case' 4 Card, and landed a whopping (31-14) to conclude a painful volley of pegging in which during one exchange I gave up Sixteen Holes and only obtained Six Points in return!

Pone might also conclude the pegging by leading from a 5-6 combo, and whether we're holding onto a 4 Card or a 7 Card, Pone could conclude by pegging either Six Points or Four Points, unopposed, respectively. That's an awful lot of worrying over some very remote pegging concerns.

The poster of this puzzle says a 7 Card Cut occurred in the actual game, and I'm curious to know if Pone relinquished an 8 Card into the Dealer's Crib, since if any were dealt, it would have been unlikely that there was a 7 Card companion sitting alongside it!

In spite of all the current storm systems wreaking havoc in Puerto Rico, Cuba, and Florida, and with Venice under (too much) water, and ... wait for it ... even Canada is taking a few weather punches ... I still cannot help but believe that this hurricane season was and overall is actually a mild one, while other problems seem to be distributed across almost every continent, and as the Northern Hemisphere plunges toward winter, we wonder:

"Will there be enough heat?" and "Will there be enough food?" and "Will it be hunger, or cold, or bacteria, virus, chemical or nuclear agent, financial chaos or inflation, political turmoil, and the list never seems to get shorter.

It was forty-three years ago this week that I travelled West, from Ohio, through Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, and over Raton Pass and on into New Mexico, the "Land of Enchantment"; and while it was spectacular and sunny in Albuquerque amidst the 1979 Hot Air Balloon Festival, it had indeed been "Snowin' on Raton" (rhymes with 'alone') as we made our way through the Sangre de Cristo Mountains and over that mystical mountain pass. "Ratón" means "mouse" in Spanish, and it sounds like "rat-on" as in, "I woke up with a 'rat on' my pillow!"

We sometimes have to remind ourselves that by almost any measure, in the aggregate, that over the centuries, the world has actually steadily improved for millions upon millions of people each decade, and while we all get older and perhaps have reasons to be pessimistic or cynical, someone born today will likely have more freedom and opportunities than every generation that preceded it: or at least that's been the case thus far.

With this optimistic spirit, I post my thoughts above regarding today's "Hand of the Day" Cribbage Puzzle, and here's a song to go along with it: "Snowin' on Raton" by Townes van Zandt:
Eolus619 says: Townes had a way with words for sure. I might add, our family ranch in the San Juan Mountains of SW Colorado has the 3rd most senior water right on the western slope. So we keep a good eye on water availability. The worst mega drought in the last 1200 years continues. The upstream reservoirs for Lake Powell are losing their ability to send water down the Colorado River to generate power for some 5.8 million people…as well as provide them water for their other various uses. How 46 million people ended up in a desert with less than 20” of moisture a year is another story. We have a water crisis…there is no known substitute for Mark Twain once the American west whiskey is for drinkin and water is for fightinj
6142 votes

Joined: April 2008

Wednesday 3:51 AM
7-7 for about .0005 second. Too much thought? dec
1265 votes

Joined: February 2009

Wednesday 4:15 AM
With the crowd today-nice to meet you Terry-see you down the road
5519 votes

Joined: March 2008

Wednesday 4:17 AM
A sure 8? I'm keeping my points.
918 votes

Joined: April 2021

Wednesday 4:22 AM
Any other choice is too great a sacrifice. No pairs to the crib today, just throw the "garbage", and we should be able to maintain a solid advantage as long as pone did not get a great hand. This hand also contains a couple of "magic 11"s) and safety in numbers, which is just fine in our present situation.
1008 votes

Joined: January 2021

Wednesday 6:22 AM
Not thrilled with the crib toss, but that's the way it goes sometimes. 8 in hand with pegging 11s while on track to deal first (well) above 70 as long as pone doesn't hit a big hand and/or pegging score.

Keeping defensive on the pegging knowing we have at least 13 today. Not pairing any 4s or 7s unless we're close enough to 31 to avoid the possibility of giving up 6.
2830 votes

Joined: November 2014

Wednesday 6:31 AM
Keep the points. 8 in the hand is worth more than 2 in the hand, 2 in the crib.
1141 votes

Joined: June 2020

Wednesday 6:58 AM
First…about yesterday. Ras has returned & posted late. Read him if you didn’t see his comments. Again yesterday, as to Hal posting about win % chances, none were more than 25%. That seems awfully low for just the first hand and the potential scoring of Pone. But if this is true, it is another example of Ras’s evidence that 3 of 10 games are lost on first hand. Today…straight forward for me. With Pone 16 away from 70 , I like my board position and chances for first deal above 70. I have decided to keep the eight starting points.

658 votes

Joined: April 2021

Wednesday 9:30 AM
I will make it unanimous from the posters. Maybe pone was forced to put a 5 in the crib and we get more than 2 points in the crib.
4953 votes

Joined: November 2008

Wednesday 10:29 AM
Choosing offense as a strategy, holding the 8 points is the only way to fly. Had the bottom three cards been A-A-4 instead of A-4-4, the pair of sevens would have been a viable discard. Not so with these. After seeing the starter card, knowing dealer has guaranteed peg, ten points in hand, and a known two points in crib, will down shift to an optimal pegging strategy. Take seemingly safe pegs and don't give up six pegs on a triple. Want to keep n/d short of that third Street CPZ (69-73).
1286 votes

Joined: January 2012

Wednesday 10:57 AM
Maybe the better question here is - if your opponent leads a 6, how are you playing this hand?
Ras2829 says: Hi jmath714: Would limit the pegs of n/d if possible, play the seven giving up three possibly rather than taking chance on giving up five pegs with play of 4 on a six lead. If had pitched a couple of fives to the crib, would then drop a four on the six lead. Hopefully you'll get other responses this day.
MiketheExpert says: This reminds me of the hand approximately one week ago, where I picked (4 4 5 7) as the "desperation" hold to keep to give myself best chances to win in the endgame, though not met with the greatest of support, as it certainly entails some risk on many potential pone plays. This is somewhat similar in that it's generally quite a safe hand which will not give up a lot, however under the right circumstances (such as a 6 opening by pone), could also potentially give up a lot. In some ways, the "5" is a safer play (especially when we hold 2 4's and 2 7's), but here we don't have that luxury, and would have to agree with RAS and play the 7 in order to try and minimize any potential damage, unless I knew the position of a couple of the outstanding 5's. I think the "8" would be a rather uncommon reply for 3 (but seeing as I didn't 15 him with a 9), he could risk this at the cost of giving up a 31-2....Then it is trying to prevent any more damage....but will respond back with the 4 for 4 pts if instead he scores (6-7-5) for 3.
5418 votes

Joined: October 2007

Wednesday 1:51 PM
I think it's between 4-4-7-7 (A-9), A-4-4-9 (7-7) and A-7-7-9 (4-4) and perhaps A-4-4-7 (7-9):

4-4-7-7: 8pts + 3½pts (Schell: 3.40) = 11½pts

A-4-4-9: 2pts + 5¾pts (Schell: 5.94) = 7¾pts

A-7-7-9: 4pts + 5¾pts (Schell: 5.63) = 9¾pts

A-4-4-7: 4pts + 5¾pts (Schell: 5.92) = 9¾pts


4-4-7-7: Improves with 44, 77, 8888 = 8 cuts = 8/46 = 17.4% up to 12/14/20pts with all cuts.

A-4-4-9: Improves with AAA, 2222, 44, 5555, 6666, 77, 999 + 16xXs = 38 cuts = 38/46 = 82.6% up to 6/8pts with AAA, 2222, 44, 6666 + 16xXs = 29 cuts.

A-7-7-9: Improves with AAA, 5555, 6666, 77, 8888, 999 = 20 cuts = 20/46 = 43.5% up to 8/12pts with AAA, 77, 8888 = 9 cuts.

A-4-4-7: Improves with AAA, 3333, 44, 6666, 77, 8888 + 16xXs = 35 cuts = 35/46 = 76.1% up to 8/10/12pts with 3333, 44, 77 + 16xXs = 24 cuts.


On average we should be at or past 3rd street positional hole as Pone for next deal while opponent is unlikely to reach it. As we've reach positional hole first we will have the positional advantage so I'll play offense but with caution.


I think A-4-4-7 will peg best as it has 3 low cards and a middle card plus it has a magic eleven.


4-4-7-7 has the best starting value by 1¾pts over A-4-4-7 and A-7-7-9 but it has very few cuts for improvement although these are from 12-20pts. A-4-4-7 has many more cuts for improvement and 24 cuts for 8-12pts and also it should peg better. So I'll throw a 7-9.
Coeurdelion says: Oops!
5129 votes

Joined: February 2008

Wednesday 1:54 PM
At 55*-55 playing a Defense strategy for the pegging the dynamic expected averages and Win/Loss %s are:

Defense___Hand_Pegs____Crib_Total____W5 %____W6 %
A-7-7-9____5.96+(-2.09)+5.26= 9.13____42.4____57.0
A-4-4-9____5.04+(-1.91)+5.79= 8.92____40.7____53.0
A-4-4-7____6.83+(-2.07)+3.99= 8.75____41.4____52.9

Defense_______L5 %____L6 %

4-4-7-7 is best for expected averages by 1.46pts and is considerably best for Win %s and lowest for Loss %s. So I'll select A-9 to discard.

After the A cut I'll play Defense to the lead.
Danish Viking
12 votes

Joined: December 2009

Wednesday 2:14 PM
A 7 cut for a sweet 14! Play the7 on a 10 lead.
Ras2829 says: Hi Danish Viking: Nice to hear a new voice in the choir. It's a fast-moving train with few stops. Welcome aboard and hang on!
Danish Viking says: Thanks nice to be here. I have been away since 2009 apparently.