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Rag Cards

by Shirley Rosario
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Rag Cards
Rags – Cards low in rank, and are considered “bad” to play.


Rags usually refer to a pair of hole cards that do not work well together and are low in value. In Texas Hold’em, a hand like 72 would be considered rags.

Rags do not have much potential to improve (unless a miracle combination of cards appears on the flop/board) and are usually folded immediately. Even hands like Q3 or K2 can be considered rags because the cards don't work together and they can be problematic if the high card pairs leaving kicker problems.

A rag card, unto itself, is usually a low card appearing on the board that has no apparent impact on any player’s likely holding. For example, on a final board of Ks-Kd-Qs-Jd-2h, the deuce of hearts would commonly be referred to as a rag on the river because the chances it helped anyone is very small given the other cards in play and the action leading up to it.

Sometimes a low rag card is called a baby card. In straight high games, these are the worst cards to try to complete a Holdem hand with. Tight players will not include these cards in their starting hand selection, even if they have a pair. Only the loosest of players will play these cards regularly. This means that when baby cards hit the board you can discount somewhat the likelihood that your opponent will be holding them. Although baby cards tend to be worth less than the bigger cards in high only games, they can form premium starting hands in High-Low Split and Lowball games.

Usage: Rag Cards, Ragged Board, Ace Rag, Rags

Previous Poker Term: Ragged
Next Poker Term: Rail

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(c) Shirley Rosario

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