Isn't RA1 your most played though?
I would have thought a not-so-good ladder would be far better than no ladder at all. Competition motivates a lot of people to play, stream etc which is all good for the game.
Dodging matches existed 20 years in Westwood Online so it'd be no different to then. Also I don't really see the big issue with players not playing to avoid a loss? If this really is an issue then it seems like its a balance issue with points won per game, in other words small configuration changes that won't take a lot of time to fix.