Here is a look at Ranger Front suspension: The Ford Ranger Front Suspension
2001 Explorer front end would be a no on 2000 Ranger
Find a 1997 or older Ranger front end
Assuming explorer is a 5.0l V8, if not then no on that swap as well.
If it is a V8 then do that swap first, you don't need to have front drive shaft connected.
But really have to agree that converting a 2WD vehicle to 4WD when you can just buy a factory 4WD version of same vehicle is a waste of time and money.
But your time and your money, it isn't for me to say.........even though I did, lol.