Four generations of Yankees in four separate essays by four ranking sports-writers. Robert Creamer on Ruth and Gehrig goes back to the team's beginnings--as the Highlanders until newspapermen protested that eleven letters wouldn't squeeze into a one-column headline. Dave Anderson writes on the DiMaggio years with proprietary enthusiasm for Joe's ""class"" on and off the field; his importance, like everyone else's here, is measurable in stats--ten pennants and nine Series championships in 13 Yankee years. Harold Rosenthal picks up the ball with Casey Stengel's stewardship over Mantle & Co. in a piece that extends to the start of that ten-year hiatus between Yankee pennants. Finally, the new era: Murray Chass reviews Steinbrenner's restoration of the team's ""rightful throne"" (with and despite Billy Martin), under the free-agent system. A table of Records and Rosters rounds out the sidelong chronicle--a familiar story that no one seems to mind hearing again.