Please allow me to get stat-nerdy for this week's Crew column.

Please allow me to get stat-nerdy for this week's Crew column.

You see, we're in the thick of August, a historically bountiful month for the Black and Gold. As someone who has been following the Crew since day one, August always reminds me of Major League Soccer's 1996 inaugural season and the hot streak that helped lift Columbus from a deep hole into the playoffs.

That summer the Crew plunged to incredible depths, nearly falling out of playoff contention by July in a division where four out of five teams made the cut.

After assistant coach Tom Fitzgerald took over for Timo Liekoski and U.S. national team goalie Brad Friedel joined the fold, the team rattled off nine wins in their last 10 matches, starting with an Aug. 4 shootout victory at L.A. (That was back when MLS settled ties with a hockey-style shootout.) They eventually clinched a playoff spot on the last day of the season.

The ensuing Augusts were nearly as exciting. The Crew didn't lose in regulation in August until 1998, and they didn't suffer a losing record in August until 2006, in the depths of Sigi Schmid's rebuilding era.

Consecutive 3-1 August records in 2008 and 2009 played a major role in locking up consecutive Supporters Shields. When the Crew notoriously tied its way to the Supporters Shield in 2004, its August record was, of course, 1-0-4.

All in all, with shootout wins and losses factored as draws, Columbus is 36-20-14 all time in August, good for a .614 winning percentage. That's significantly better than the club's .514 overall average.

So far this month, Columbus has tallied a 1-1-0 record in MLS play after road contests at Philadelphia and Salt Lake. Home games this Saturday against Colorado and next Saturday against Dallas offer America's Hardest Working Team a good chance to continue their string of success during summer's dog days.

Columbus Crew August results

(S hootout wins and losses factored as draws)

1996: 4-0-2

1997: 4-0-1

1998: 4-1-0

1999: 3-2-1

2000: 2-2-1

2001: 4-2-1

2002: 2-1-1

2003: 2-2-1

2004: 1-0-4

2005: 2-2-0

2006: 1-3-0

2007: 0-2-2

2008: 3-1-0

2009: 3-1-0

2010: 1-1-0

All-time August record : 36-20-14 (.614 winning percentage)

All-time results: 166-154-108 (.514 winning percentage)