I might have voted for Cruz, but probably would have written in a 3rd party. And I know addressed this above, but I don’t think Cruz is comparable to Hillary. She might have been hated by the right, but she was definitely the accepted candidate of mainstream Democrats. Most establishment Republicans HATE Cruz’s guts. The only reason they supported him was he was the last alternate to Trump standing, so there were no other options (and too little too late to boot).
I’d peg Rubio, Pence, or even (pre-Trump lapdog) Christie as the Republican nominee in your bizzaro world. Liked by their own party, hated by the grass roots of the other party, but at least respected and a ‘known quantity’ that the mainstream opposition party could deal with.