Blackjack Strategy: Pair Splitting on Aces

Yesterday I talked about blackjack strategy in regards to pair that you do not split when you are dealt them. And it does not matter whether you are playing online blackjack or blackjack in a brick and mortar casino, you still do not split those two pairs.

So today I thought we would talk about pairs that you always, always, always split. First up is a pair of Aces.

Logically you have to split a pair of Aces. Do the math and it just seems smart to do so. An Ace is worth 11 or 1, with 11 being the first value given; if that 11 does not work in the hand it is then reduced to 1. So a pair of Aces first adds up to 22, which is a bust. So naturally one of the Aces is reduced to 1, giving the player a hand total of 12. Nasty hard 12.

You can see why any smart blackjack player would split that pair of Aces.

Once split you have two hands that are starting at 11. Not only that you have half of what you need to make 21. If you are playing blackjack in a brick and mortar casino and also happen to be a card counter, and the deck is running with high cards, that would be a good time to split those Aces since your chances of being dealt the cards for a hard 19, 20 or 21 are increased.

Even if you are not a card counter or are even playing blackjack online, it is good blackjack strategy to split a pair of Aces. Doing so takes your hand from a weak position to a stronger one.

Blackjack Strategy: Pair Splitting on 10s

This morning I talked about a pair that, according to good blackjack strategy is never ever split: a pair of 5s. But there is one more pair that is never eve split either: a pair of 10s.

A pair of 10s could be literally two 10 cards. Or it could be two face cards, not necessarily the same two face cards, meaning a pair could be a Queen and a Jack. Or a pair of 10s could be a 10 card and a face card. The whole point to the pair is that the two cards have the same value.

There are two mistakes that happen when a blackjack player uses some misguided blackjack strategy and splits a pair of 10s. Either he is ill-informed or he is just all caught up in being dealt a pair and cannot resist splitting it.

Mistake number one is that the split is made with the idea that the player can then double down on each of those 10s. First off, not all blackjack games allow for doubling after splitting. This rule is typically found at blackjack tables in casinos and not found at all in online blackjack.

The problem with this strategy, aside from the instances in which doubling after splitting is not allowed, is that the player is giving up a strong hand for something weaker. True, starting a hand with 10 is not too bad of a building block. But it is weaker when compared to an unsplit pair of 10s.

The other mistake that the player forgets about doubling after splitting, and is intent on trying to build two strong hands. But, again, the player is giving up strong blackjack ground for weaker ground.

The reason why you do not split a pair of 10s is right in front of the player

Blackjack Strategy: Pair Splitting

Like any game of skill, blackjack requires strategy. Any good game of skill worth the trip to an online gambling site requires good strategy. The most commonly used strategy tool in both online blackjack and blackjack played in a brick and mortar casino is basic strategy.

Basic strategy comes in the form of a chart with player hands running down the left hand side and all of the dealer up cards running across the top. When using basic strategy you find your hand and run it across the line until it intersects with the line of the card the dealer is showing. The play at the intersection is the best statistical play for you to make.

But if you look at a basic strategy chart you notice that it is somewhat divided into three sections based on the player

Splitting 8

When it comes to blackjack strategy it is important to understand that not all of your strategy should be focused on offensive playing. Meaning, it should not all focus on making money for you. Not every part of blackjack is in good order for you to win. If blackjack was a game that let you win all the time then online casinos and brick and mortar casinos would not offer it.

Anyway. Defensive blackjack strategy.

Regardless of whether you are playing online blackjack or blackjack in a brick and mortar casino you must understand that there will be times when you are dealt a losing hand. It sucks. But it happens. And it is not the time to try to make money. So you play some defensive blackjack and try to minimalize your losses.

Being dealt a pair of 8

Types of Pair Splitting Part II

Yesterday I wrote a post about the types of pair splitting there is in blackjack. Pair splitting happens no matter if you are playing blackjack online or in a casino. In order to make the most of pair splitting in terms of strategy and improving your blackjack odds, you need to know when to split pairs.

Basic strategy is the first place to start. A basic strategy chart can be used in blackjack as the most basic way to gain an advantage through splitting pairs. But eventually, once you have mastered basic strategy, you can begin to work in other little bits of strategy. These other little bits offer you the chance to tweak your strategy to increase your blackjack odds a little more.

In yesterday

Types of Pair Splitting

Knowing when to split pairs is according to basic strategy is one thing. Knowing the difference between types of pair splits in blackjack is another. Sometimes you have to deviate from what basic strategy tells you to do. It all has to do with the type of pair splitting that is necessary.

Pair splitting happens no matter if you are playing regular blackjack or online blackjack. So you will have to eventually decide how to split a pair whether you are at a blackjack table or playing blackjack online.

There are four types of pair splitting in blackjack: Offensive, Aggressive, Defensive and Reckless.

I am going to show you how these types play into improving your blackjack odds. All of the money figures are based on a $10 wager

In the case of Offensive pair splitting you are starting with an average or potentially losing hand and improving your odds. An example of this would be if you were dealt a pair of 7s and the dealer is showing a 5. If you were to stand you could expect an average of a $3.30 loss. But if you split you have a net average of about $1.20. This taking a loss and turning it around, making it an offensive pair splitting.

With an aggressive split you are taking a good hand and pushing the limits on it. For this example we are going to say that you have been dealt a pair that you would probably normally stand on: a pair of 9s and the dealer has a 6 showing. You could expect a $2.80 profit on standing, but by splitting you could expect $4.40 in profit. That is taking a strong hand and pushing it for something more.

Defensive pair splitting is when you have a pair that you know you are probably going to lose with no matter what, and your play is to try to minimize the loss. Let